Development banks commit to a blue finance roadmap

Cartagena, Colombia, Sep 5 (EFE).- A group of eight public development banks pledged this Tuesday in the Colombian port city of Cartagena to jointly work towards a “blue finance roadmap,” aiming for the protection and sustainable use of oceans and marine and coastal ecosystems.

Former Colombian Minister of the Environment, Carlos Correa, a senior member of the NGO Conservation International, said that the world had lost 1.1 million hectares of mangroves in the last 20 years and emphasized that “the goal is to restore half of what we’ve lost.”

“We will also promote green infrastructure programs that combine the restoration of nature, mangroves, and marine green meadows with approaches that safeguard blue carbon ecosystems,” he added.

He highlighted this “broad coalition that includes public development banks” for the roadmap. Its progress will be presented at the next United Nations Conference on Oceans to be held in France in 2025.


This collaboration is named “A Call to Implement Positive Actions for the Ocean.” Participants include the French Development Agency (AFD), the Asian Development Bank (AsDB), the Development Bank of Latin America and the Caribbean (CAF), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), and the European Investment Bank (EIB).

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), Germany’s KfW Development Bank, and the West African Development Bank (WADB) have also committed to this endeavor.

The idea is to improve coordination among public development banks to align their interventions.

“The ocean (…) provides us with oxygen to breathe and contributes to food security, nutrition, jobs, and decent livelihoods. However, unsustainable exploitation, pollution from chemicals and plastics, and the climate crisis – with its impacts on temperature and ocean acidification – threaten species and marine ecosystems worldwide,” the statement underscores.

“The protection and sustainable use of the oceans are key to achieving sustainable development and eradicating poverty.” This is why “the world urgently needs to address these issues and invest on a large scale in oceanic solutions.”

“In this inaugural cooperation of public development banks on the oceans, the blue finance roadmap will bring together the knowledge and experience from all oceanic investments made by participating organizations, ensure accountability, and identify remaining funding gaps and realistic funding opportunities,” the eight signatories added.

EIB Vice President Ricardo Mourinho stated that with collaboration, the banks will work for “the planet and the ocean, critical assets.”

Meanwhile, the Manager of Climate Action and Positive Biodiversity of the Development Bank of Latin America, Alicia Montalvo, noted that “there is no green without blue,” and “there is no blue without green.”

“In the Caribbean, 80% of the people depend on the ocean, and in Latin America, 50% of us depend on the oceans. We’re talking about water and people. We need to change the way we work for that,” she said.


The banks committed to support “a sustainable blue economy” by financing the reduction of oceanic pollution through wastewater, stormwater, and solid waste infrastructures.

They will also invest in protected marine areas, ecological ports, greener maritime transport, renewable oceanic energies, circular economy, and other less traditional sectors such as sustainable aquaculture, blue biotechnologies, ocean data, restoration, and blue carbon sequestration.

The idea is to “do no harm” to the ocean and adopt a proactive approach by “doing the most good.” EFE



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