The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the Deutsche Gesellschaft f√ºr Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) have partnered with the Green Climate Fund (GCF) to organise an international workshop on Climate Change Financing and the Green Climate Fund at the Barbados Hilton Hotel, Bridgetown, Barbados, on July 11 and 12, 2013. This workshop brings together Board Members of the GCF, international experts, technicians and practitioners in the field of development and climate finance. It builds on work initiated by the GCF Board members who represents the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and Least Developed Countries (LDCs) constituencies on the 24 member Board - Zambia and Barbados. "Our extreme vulnerability to climatic events exacerbated by climate change is like a sword of Damocles hanging over our development. However, historically countries from the Region have not received their fair share of international climate change support due to our capacity constraints and accessing multilateral funds remains a challenge for us," said Hon. Christopher Sinckler, Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs of Barbados. The Board of the Fund has recognised that some developing countries will need support to develop the necessary in-country infrastructure for formulating quality projects to be submitted to the Fund and for meeting the required standards to directly access the Fund. International and Regional intermediaries, such as the CDB, will have a crucial role in facilitating access of their members. "The early operationalisation of the Green Climate Fund is of the highest priority for our Region and the CDB is determined in playing an active role in facilitating access to the Fund in the immediate term and to gain direct access in the longer term," said Dr. Warren Smith, President of CDB. "The Fund must advance in the immediate term and in meaningful manner its programme of work on climate finance readiness and preparatory support, including by working with partner institutions such as international, Regional and national development banks." The expected outcomes of the workshop include the identification of specific needs and potential institutional arrangements and activities for enhancing climate finance readiness and preparedness in recipient countries. Specific modalities of such support will be discussed in Bridgetown and the outcome of the workshop will directly inform decisions to be taken by the Board on this matter at its September meeting. "An early start of readiness support will improve the results and the effectiveness of future investments," said Alexander Fr√∂de who heads the Climate Finance Work in GIZ. "It is a unique opportunity to have developing and developed countries at the table as well as implementers and think tanks to think about how to enhance country preparation to the Green Climate Fund. We all have experience and perspectives to contribute and share." The Green Climate Fund was established in 2010 under the United Nation Framework Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC). The GCF was created to be the main global fund for climate change by channeling billions of new financial resources to developing countries. The Fund will support projects and programmes that help developing countries reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to the impacts of climate change. A key strategic priority of the Fund is the consideration of the needs of developing countries particularly vulnerable to climate including SIDS and LDCs. The Fund is currently in the final stages of its design and is expected to be fully operational sometime in 2014. CAPTION: CDB President, Dr. Warren Smith said the early operationalisation of the Green Climate Fund is of the highest priority for our Region CAPTION: Members of the head table at the launch of the international Green Climate Fund Workshop on Climate Finance Readiness at the Hilton Barbados. (L-R) Mr. Rawleston Moore, Senior Climate Change Specialist, Global Environment Facility; Hon. Christopher Sinckler, Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs, Barbados; Alexander Fr√∂de, Division Environment and Climate, GIZ and Dr. Carla Barnett, Vice-President (Operations), CDB.