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António Guterres (UN Secretary-General) at the Finance in Common Summit, Paris Peace Forum
12 Nov 2020 -  Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
This year, amid the pandemic and the associated emergency that affects lives and livelihoods worldwide, we mark the fifth anniversary of the Paris Agreement and the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals.
These two agendas go hand in hand.
The decisions we make now will determine the course of the next 30 years and beyond: emissions must fall by half by 2030 and reach net-zero emissions no later than 2050 to reach the 1.5C goal.
Science is clear: if we fail to meet these goals, the disruption to economies, societies and people caused by COVID-19 will pale in comparison to what the climate crisis holds in store.
And so our shared responsibility is equally clear: redouble our efforts to recover from the economic and social crisis, and get on track to achieve the SDGs and build a sustainable, inclusive and resilient future.
This will require an unprecedented mobilization by all of us. Global solidarity is imperative to defeat the virus and recover better.
I am encouraged by the growing number of countries committing to the net zero target.
The European Union has pledged to become the first carbon-neutral continent by 2050, and has aligned its COVID-19 recovery package with that objective.
The United Kingdom, Japan and the Republic of Korea, together with more than 110 other countries, have pledged carbon neutrality by 2050, and China has pledged to get there before 2060.
This means that 50 per cent of the world’s Gross Domestic Product, and about 50 per cent of global carbon dioxide emissions, are now covered by a net-zero commitment.
This coalition of governments, joined by many cities and businesses, is growing in strength because leaders from around the world understand we have no alternative and because they recognize the opportunities that are there to be seized.
But we are not there yet. No such bold commitments have yet been made to mobilize the finance necessary to achieve the net zero commitment by 2050 nor, more broadly, the SDGs.
Public development banks are uniquely positioned to play a leading role in this transformation, and I am encouraged by your stance towards the SDGs and the Paris Agreement during this Summit.
You can provide concessional finance where it is most needed, and leverage private finance for a shift of the whole financial system.
This is essential to reboot our economies and put them firmly on the path to a carbon-neutral, sustainable future.
We know what needs to be done. Let me highlight five key steps.
First, the mandates of public development banks need to be aligned with commitments to get to carbon neutrality by 2050 and the SDGs.
Setting climate finance targets is not enough.
In 2019, multilateral development banks set a collective target of at least $65 billion by 2025, with $50 billion targeted to low- and middle-income countries, and an increase in adaptation finance of $18 billion.