Airtel Africa Urges Enhanced Public-Private Collaboration For Climate Action In Africa At COP28

Group CEO of Airtel Africa plc, Segun Ogunsanya, has reaffirmed the  importance of an enabling policy environment for sustainable development and climate action in  partnership with Africa’s private sector at COP28. 

Mr. Ogunsanya, a member of the United Nations Global Compact’s African Business Leaders  Coalition (ABLC), addressed a distinguished audience at a COP28 side event co-hosted by Airtel  Africa and the ABLC. Guests included the President of Botswana, His Excellency Mokgweetsi Masisi; the Finance Minister of Nigeria, Mr. Wale Edun; the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory Nigeria,  Mr. Nyesom Wike; Ms. Sanda Ojiambo, the Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations Global  Compact (UNGC); Chairman of BUA Group Nigeria limited, Abdul Samad Rabiu and several business  leaders from across Africa.  

The Group CEO of Airtel Africa urged African business leaders and governments to join forces to  advance sustainable growth, development, and prosperity across the continent. He said: “We stress  the importance of an enabling policy environment for sustainable development and climate action  in partnership with Africa’s private sector. Livelihood and living must go together.” 

He also shared details of Airtel Africa’s environmental stewardship initiatives. These include ‘Project  Green,’ launched in 2022, and focused on circular economy practices, especially in the responsible  replacement of end-of-life equipment to minimize potential adverse environmental impacts.  Furthermore, in March 2023, Airtel Africa joined the multi-stakeholder partnership to eliminate open  waste burning from Africa. This collaborative effort with local authorities, private companies,  community groups, civil society and development partners targets a 60% reduction by 2030 and  complete elimination of open waste burning by 2040.  

Mr. Ogunsanya declared: “Airtel Africa’s corporate purpose, our driving force, is to ‘transform lives.’  This is not simply a slogan but a genuine passion that informs every aspect of our operations and  every decision we take.” 

He concluded: “It is our firm belief is our firm belief that African businesses, including Airtel Africa,  stand ready to leverage global markets to accelerate the transition to a future-fit economy. We must  deliver economic development, inclusive growth and GHG emissions reduction at the same time to  enjoy the fruits of sustainability.” 

The United Nations African Business Leaders Coalition (ABLC) is a collaborative initiative  comprising African business CEOs committed to fostering sustainable growth, prosperity, and  development throughout the African continent. Members in the coalition, including Airtel Africa,  committed to escalating the adoption of renewable energy, investing in climate-adaptation  solutions, and ensuring an equitable transition. During COP28, the ABLC released a policy  recommendation urging governments to establish conducive regulatory frameworks that facilitate  collective climate action. The recommendation further advocates for the setting of decarbonization  targets and the acceleration of initiatives such as green minerals and climate adaptation programs and calls for increased access to climate financing to support these endeavors.

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