Climate challenge needs coordinated actions from key stakeholders: OICCI

27

Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry (OICCI), the collective body of over 200 foreign investors, on Friday launched a white paper on climate challenges at a round-table conference attended by OICCI office bearers, media persons, and representatives from academia, corporate and social sector organisations.

The white paper titled, “Synergizing the Climate Ambition: A Blueprint for Achieving NDCs through Private Sector Engagement in Pakistan” called for coordinated and the earliest actions by the key stakeholders to escape further human and material losses.

The prominent speakers include; the Chairperson of the Pakistan Stock Exchange and former governor State Bank of Pakistan Dr. Shamshad Akhtar, Waqar Hussain Pulpoto from Sindh Government, Ali Tauqeer, OICCI’s Vice President Aamir Paracha and Secretary General Abdul Aleem, senior journalists and international climate experts.

The white paper incorporates the key learnings and insights from Pakistan Climate Conference 2022, organized by OICCI in Karachi on March 16, 2022.

The white paper said Pakistan made an ambitious commitment of reducing 50 percent emissions by 2030 in the Nationally Determined Contributions targets presented at the 26th Conference of Parties (COP26).

Under Pakistan’s NDCs, about 15% of the total proposed emissions reduction is unconditional whereas the remaining 35% is to be achieved subject to conditional support from bilateral and multilateral sources.

Dr. Shamshad Akhtar mentioned that PSX launched ESG taskforce and interaction with all the corporates in Pakistan. ESG compliance was very important for attracting foreign direct investment and is a very attractive instrument to attract long-term investment.

Vice President OICCI and CEO Unilever Pakistan Amir Paracha said that with ever-rising greenhouse gas concentrations and accumulated heat, the past eight years have been the warmest on record. Heatwaves, droughts, and floods had affected millions making it evident that climate change is a grave and mounting threat globally.

Pakistan was the 5th most vulnerable country despite having less than 1 perc greenhouse gas emissions. Taking the right actions could move us towards a fairer, more sustainable world by addressing climate change, he added.

The industries would require, as per OICCI white paper, transforming business models that could open new revenue streams and drive innovation.

However, the industry partners cannot work alone without the support from government, civil society, and consumer bodies. Coordinated actions, behavioral change, financial commitments, and compliance with regulatory frameworks will be needed, highlights the white paper.

The OICCI’s recommended roadmap aimed at harmonizing the efforts, sharing learnings of OICCI members such as Shell Pakistan and Siemens, Total Parco and Nestle.

The monitoring and evaluation mechanism suggested in the working paper will help consolidate data and efforts for promoting collaborations as well as support the industry and government stakeholders to streamline the projection and demonstration of their work.

“Pakistan is at a crossroads, the decision it takes today will impact the sustainability of its future” commended M. Abdul Aleem, Secretary General of OICCI adding that, “a key outcome proposed by OICCI through this white paper was the recommendation to the Government to adopt three primary resolutions to mobilize climate action amongst stakeholders across the country which would include setting up a Climate Change and Corporate Implementation Task Force, to establish a Steering Committee that reviews and gradually raises the bar for improving the Climate-Related Disclosures thoughtfully and develop a Pakistan Climate Knowledge Sharing Initiative.