Meeting of Climate Action Coalition chaired by Minister of Finance Vanhanen as cooperation was joined by United States, Japan and South Korea
Climate and economic policies were discussed by the finance ministers of over 60 countries at the meeting of the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action on 6 April 2021. In its spring meeting, the Coalition acquired eight new member countries, including the United States, Japan and South Korea.
The meeting was co-chaired by Finland’s Minister of Finance Matti Vanhanen and his counterparts Rodrigo Cerda from Chile and Sri Mulyani Indrawati from Indonesia. After the meeting, the Coalition will continue its work with Finland and Indonesia as chairs.
“I warmly welcome the new members of the Coalition. This demonstrates the Coalition’s growing role and the importance of its work in the global climate debate. Our work is based on building trust and confidence, sharing experiences and strengthening expertise and knowledge,” said Minister of Finance Vanhanen.
The most actively debated topics were the challenges of green recovery, the reforms necessitated by a carbon-neutral economy, and the impacts of climate change on financial stability. In his closing remarks, Minister Vanhanen hailed the outcome of the meeting and called on the Coalition to collaborate with stakeholders and relevant organisations with a view to assembling a set of concrete tools. The discussions of the Coalition today were extremely relevant also from the perspective of the Climate Summit, to be hosted by the United States on 22 April 2021.
The Coalition meeting gathered finance ministers from more than 60 countries. Participating for the first time were the new members the United States, Japan and South Korea, and the meeting was also attended by China and India that are not members of the Coalition. Among the observers were countries such as Russia and Pakistan. The meeting, which brought together the world’s largest economies, was also attended by US Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen and China’s Minister of Finance Liu Kun.
Dialogue with stakeholders
In a dialogue with stakeholders, the finance ministers discussed climate and economic policy priorities and the work of the Coalition. The topics included:
- post-pandemic economic recovery, economic growth and the transition to a carbon neutral economy
- the role of finance ministers and central banks in managing climate risks
- promotion of a carbon-neutral economy (discussion with the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the Institute of International Finance, and the International Chamber of Commerce).
The spring meeting was also attended by institutional cooperation partners. The International Monetary Fund was represented by its Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva; the World Bank by President David Malpass; the OECD by Secretary-General Angel Gurria; the EU by Vice-President of the Commission Valdis Dombrovskis; the European Investment Bank (EIP) by President Werner Hoyer; the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) by President Odile Renaud-Basso; the London School of Economics by Professor Lord Nicholas Stern; the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra by President Jyrki Katainen; the Network for Greening the Financial System (NGFS), a cooperation body for central banks and supervisors, by Chair Frank Elderson; and the World Resource Institute by President and CEO Andrew Steer. The debate on the promotion of a carbon-neutral economy was also attended by the Global Leader of Climate & Energy at WWF Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, President and CEO of the Institute of International Finance (IIF) Tim Adams, and Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) John Denton.
Bringing climate into economic policy
The Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action aims to bring climate change into the planning of economic policy and financing solutions. Launched in Washington DC in April 2019 on Finland’s initiative, the Coalition now has 60 member countries, each committed to a set of principles known as the Helsinki Principles. The membership rose by eight ahead of the meeting and during it, as the Coalition was joined by Belgium, Burkina Faso, South Korea, Japan, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia, Rwanda and the United States.
The Coalition meeting took place virtually in the margin of the Spring Meetings of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund, held during 5–11 April.
Pekka Morén, Senior Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 295 530 290, pekka.moren(at)vm.fi
Riikka Pakarinen, Special Adviser to the Minister, tel. +358 40 580 0833, riikka.pakarinen(at)vm.fi