CDB puts spotlight on Caribbean at high-level event on climate resilience

President of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), Dr. Wm. Warren Smith, on Tuesday welcomed the global community’s commitment to scale up support for climate risk management in the world’s most vulnerable countries. He was speaking during the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP23) at a high-level event for leaders of international organisations, Ministers and insurance sector stakeholders.


high-level event on climate resilience COP23CDB President (fourth from left) joins officials for a group photo during one of five high-level events convened by the COP23 Presidency in Bonn, Germany.


The President highlighted the importance of risk-transfer innovations such as CCRIF SPC (formerly known as the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility), which has issued more than USD120 million in payouts to member countries since its inception in 2007.

“We are very proud that we were one of the early contributors to the capital of that fund,” said Smith, speaking of CCRIF SPC during the session titled, “Towards a resilient future: Frontiers of risk sharing”.

However, he noted that CCRIF SPC needed increased capitalisation to boost coverage so that it can better respond to the risks inherent in vulnerable small island developing states and coastal countries in the Region.

 “We are very pleased to announce here this morning that the Caribbean Development Bank is contributing a further USD14 million of new capital to the CCRIF, thanks to the generosity of one of our shareholders, Mexico,” the President added.


high-level event on climate resilience - COP23CDB President, Dr. Wm. Warren Smith (third from left) chats with moderator, Melinda Crane (right), during the COP23 Presidency Event, “Towards a resilient future: Frontiers of risk sharing” on November 14, 2017 in Bonn, Germany.


CDB contributed USD50 million to the initial capitalisation of CCRIF SPC and last month at its headquarters in Bridgetown, Barbados, its Board of Directors approved the grant of USD14 million to the Facility.

The event also marked the launch of a new initiative, the InsuResilience Global Partnership.  The Partnership aims to provide vulnerable countries with financial protection to manage climate risks and responds to the G20’s 2017 Climate and Energy Action Plan for Growth in which it welcomed the creation of a “Global Partnership for Climate and Disaster Risk Finance and Insurance Solutions”.

Participants in the session included Hon. Frank Bainimarama, COP23 President and Prime Minister of the Republic of Fiji; Hon. Allen Chastanet, Prime Minister of Saint Lucia; and Thomas Silberhorn, Parliamentary State Secretary to the Federal Minister for Development Cooperation and Development.

The high-level event was one of five convened by the COP23 Presidency to examine topics such as resilience and risk insurance; UN policy coherence, climate change and health; climate change and human rights; and long-term strategies to 2050. These events are exploring how each of the topics fits into the bigger picture of increasing global ambition, action and collaboration now and towards the implementation of the Paris Agreement.