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CVF emerged as legitimate voice under Bangladesh’s leadership, says PM

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina speaks at the UN General Assembly 76th session General Debate in UN General Assembly Hall at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City, Sept 24, 2021. REUTERS
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina speaks at the UN General Assembly 76th session General Debate in UN General Assembly Hall at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City, Sept 24, 2021. REUTERS

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Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina says the Climate Vulnerable Forum has risen to be a legitimate voice for most climate-affected countries under the leadership of Bangladesh.

She hoped it will continue to push developed countries to deliver on their commitments made under the Paris Agreement, reports

"The CVF is now a significant presence in the international climate setting. It has emerged as the legitimate voice for countries most affected by climate change under Bangladesh's presidency. The rise in CVF membership is proof of that," Hasina said.

The prime minister virtually addressed a ceremony to hand over the leadership of CVF from Bangladesh to Ghana on Wednesday.

"I believe our presidency's most important legacy will be to shift the narrative from climate vulnerability to resilience and prosperity."

Hasina added that Bangladesh is developing Mujib Climate Prosperity Plan. "We believe it can provide a template for other vulnerable countries in their own context."

According to her, 1.5 billion people in CVF member countries are facing climate emergencies.

"Despite the ongoing geo-political tension, we cannot allow the world to take away its attention from the looming climate crisis. The developed countries must deliver on their commitments on financing and technology under the Paris Agreement.

“[Under Ghana's leadership] we shall continue to press for our unmet demands with CVF's trademark moral force and reasoned arguments", she said.

The prime minister said it is with great pleasure Bangladesh passes on the CVF Presidency to Ghana.

"I thank President Nana Akufo-Addo for his kind presence on this occasion. I wish the Ghana presidency all success."

She brought up Bangladesh taking over the CVF presidency in 2020 for the second time.

"We managed to steer the forum's work through the COVID-19 pandemic. We feel relieved that we could achieve most of our objectives and more. From the outset, our Presidency remained focused on COP26 outcomes."

Despite the pandemic, the CVF under Bangladesh's presidency held the world's attention to the climate crisis and launched the Midnight Survival Deadline for countries to raise their climate ambitions, Hasina added.

"We urged them to submit their NDCs by Dec 31, 2020. Some 70 nations responded to our call. We also created the CVF-V20 Joint Multi-Donor Fund to support members in their climate action. Bangladesh and Marshall Islands provided the seed funding."

She also highlighted Bangladesh hosting the Climate Vulnerable Finance Summit in 2021 which pressed for a delivery plan for the $100 billion climate finance in the next five years.

"We realised it in Glasgow," she said, adding that the Dhaka-Glasgow Declaration is a summary of CVF's core demands and commitments.

"We renewed our call for high-emitting countries to keep the 1.5°C pledge alive and raise their climate ambitions annually. We secured a commitment for increased adaptation financing and international dialogue on loss and damage."

Hasina said they are proud of the work done by the CVF's five thematic ambassadors appointed during Bangladesh's term.

"We have high hopes from the mandate-holder for climate change and human rights. We shall maintain our advocacy for displacement and migration caused by climate change. The CVF-V20 Parliamentary Group has a critical role to play in building public opinion for climate action."

She expressed her confidence that CVF leadership will be in steady hands under President Akufo-Addo's watch and as a member of the Troika, Bangladesh will continue to extend all necessary cooperation to Ghana.

The prime minister fondly recalled her personal engagements with the late Kofi Annan, former UN secretary-general, saying, "I am sure he would have been happy to see this connection through the CVF between Bangladesh and Ghana."

She said, "We are extremely grateful to the CVF and GCA secretariats for their tireless work during our presidency. We acknowledge the trust reposed on us by our Troika members, Ethiopia and Marshall Islands. We owe it to the COP26 Presidency for giving sufficient space to CVF."

The prime minister also appreciated the role played by his cabinet colleagues and their respective ministries.

"I also recognise the support given by some of our members of parliament and academic experts. I thank in particular my CVF special envoy for a job well done," she said.

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