金立群:现在迫切需要对气候适应性进行投资

亚洲基础设施投资银行行长金立群出席全球财富管理论坛2021北京峰会并作主题发言时表示,当前全球尤其是亚太地区面临的气候挑战亟须机构投资者通过资产配置方式帮助全球实现气候目标,同时履行对投资者的托管责任。但是应对气候变化的投资面临资金瓶颈。因此,鼓励私营部门参与投资是当前亟须政策层努力的工作。加强技术应用建立早期预警机制和完善基础设施建设可以减少私营部门对非流动资产表现不确定性风险的担忧,推动全球绿色发展。当前,亚投行及合作伙伴正在寻找解决阻碍基础设施瓶颈的一系列方法,如更长的久期和适合加杠杆的融资工具,致力于建立一个有利于金融基础设施的完整生态系统,鼓励私人资本进入市场,并用最佳实践框架进行项目管理。


在全球财富管理论坛2021北京峰会上的发言

金立群

各位嘉宾,女士们先生们:

我很高兴今天有机会与大家交流。

接下来,我将谈谈全球,尤其是亚洲面临的独特气候挑战,以及机构投资者在履行受托责任的同时,利用自身资产帮助世界实现全球气候目标的迫切需要。

这些天,许多地区都遭受了毁灭性的洪水袭击。在德国西部莱茵兰-普法尔茨州,100人下落不明。房屋被冲走,桥梁和道路被摧毁,几个城镇中心成为一片废墟。一位德国政坛老将表示:“我的整个职业生涯中,从未见过后果如此严重的洪灾,造成如此多的人死亡,如此多的人失踪”。

欧洲从来没有遭受过如此大规模的自然灾害。事实证明,即便是这样一个受到专属庇佑的地区,也无法逃脱如今这种毁灭性的自然灾害。

亚太地区受到不同程度的气候变化影响。在新冠肺炎疫情大流行之前,2019年10次最具破坏性的灾害都与气候和天气有关。根据联合国的数据,到2030年,气候相关风险可能会让该地区每年损失约1600亿美元。
迄今为止,关于气候行动的全球讨论集中在减缓方面,也理应如此。必须将增加对可再生能源的投资,减少对煤炭的投资以及控制温室气体排放列为优先事项。在亚洲基础设施投资银行,我们认同,要实现根据《巴黎协定》作出的承诺,积极的缓解措施绝对至关重要。

与此同时,我们认为世界必须更加重视气候适应性。这对于亚洲和太平洋地区这样的地区而言尤其重要,在该地区的许多发展中国家已经在应对气候变化对耕种模式、供水和自然灾害的不利经济、环境和健康影响。对许多低收入国家来说,过渡期可能会很长。现在迫切需要对气候适应性进行投资。

2018年,全球气候融资超过6000亿美元。但由于几乎所有的资金都用于减缓方面(可再生能源、能源效率等),只有5%的资金用于适应性方面。在这一小部分资金中,只有大约1%来自私营部门。

根据联合国的数据,每年的适应性融资缺口目前约为700亿美元。确保在适应性方面进行足够的投资远非亚洲独有的挑战。对许多发展中国家来说,这也是一项紧迫的任务。

正如我已经指出的那样,私营部门正在回避适应性投资,把适应性投资留给政府和多边开发银行来提供资金。但压力重重的政府资产负债表面临着气候变化和从疫情中复苏的双重挑战。这意味着目前的可用资本不足。

那么,谁会挺身而出呢?

如今,环境、社会责任及公司治理(ESG)投资作为资产管理领域的下一个增长前沿,其重要性与日俱增,可持续性因素也融入到投资决策中,我们开始看到全球市场行为有意义的重塑。然而,持续转向可持续投资及其实施将需要领导力、创新文化和所有利益相关方的有效参与。

我们认为,在支持气候融资的投资方面,私营部门具有巨大潜力的一个领域是扩大相关技术使用范畴以应对气候变化。技术进步可以通过数据收集和利用分析为更好的决策提供信息,从而提高相关基础设施的强度和安全性。技术创新可以把干旱地区的空气变成水。新技术可以为面临极端天气事件的社区提供早期预警系统。这些技术可以拯救生命,使得应对气候变化能力成为基础设施投资的主流,使我们更接近全球气候目标。

基础设施领域确实已经存在少量新技术使用和创新,但应用一直很迟缓。这是因为许多发展中国家对其在工业和基础设施中的潜在用途缺乏认识。例如,在基础设施领域,有64%参与方将“缺乏了解”列为采用适当技术的主要障碍。然而,新冠肺炎疫情迅速提高了人们对技术的多种多样用途的认识,从而改变了游戏规则。

但气候适应技术的更广泛应用还面临其他挑战,尤其是巨大的数字鸿沟以及对于基础设施技术(即“infratech”)而言缺乏有利的生态系统。根据亚洲基础设施投资银行的研究,到2040年,超过50%的全球数字基础设施缺口将在亚洲。虽然私营部门已经积极投资于这个不断增长的市场,但这还不够。新冠肺炎疫情已经证实了数字鸿沟的深度,缺乏可靠的互联网导致许多国家在线上转型中苦苦挣扎。

正是因为缺乏专门用于应对气候变化技术创新的资金,因此需要激励私营部门参与。而基础设施投资者对基础设施技术解决方案产生兴趣的最大障碍是,他们担心这种流动性不足的资产可能表现不佳,并有陷入困境的风险。亚洲基础设施投资银行及其合作伙伴正寻求提供解决方案以应对阻碍数字基础设施投资瓶颈,如更长的久期和适合加杠杆的融资工具。

最终,我们需要的是一个生态系统,即一个鼓励机构投资者加大适应性融资力度的有力金融基础设施体系。亚洲基础设施投资银行将一如既往地帮助并支撑这一生态系统构建,在动员私营资本参与新兴市场缓解和适应气候变化投融资方面继续发挥重要作用。在对自身项目采取基于最佳实践的审慎框架的同时,我们正在建立新的伙伴关系,致力于吸引更多私人资本参与到可持续基础设施项目中来。

疫后复苏为政策制定者提供了一个机会,使其将公共政策更紧密地与气候目标保持一致,从而限制了锁定碳密集型基础设施的风险。可以设计一揽子刺激计划,以促进在节能、可再生能源以及低碳技术和解决方案方面增加投资。

女士们、先生们,促进国际团结以应对气候变化是朝着正确方向迈出的一步。要实现经合组织国家、中国和其他发展中国家所承诺的到2050—2060年实现净零碳排放的目标,就需要作出艰苦努力,而这种努力不应在今后三、四十年中中断。除此之外,别无选择。

亚洲基础设施投资银行希望帮助我们的成员国实现跨越式发展,因此为实现可持续发展的未来设计和创建了基础设施项目。对于那些心怀参与气候变化解决方案的愿景,并致力投身其中的人来说,投资机会比比皆是。

 

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am delighted to have the opportunity to speak to you today.

I am going to talk about the unique climate challenges facing the world, particularly Asia, and the urgent need for institutional investors to leverage their assets to help the world meet its global climate goals, while living up to their fiduciary responsibilities.

These days, many areas have been hit by devastating flooding. In the western state of Rhineland-Palatinate of Germany, 100 people were unaccounted for. Houses were swept away, bridges and roads were destroyed and several town centres were left in ruins.  A German political veteran said, “in my entire career in Germany I have never seen such a flood with such terrible consequences, with so many deaths and so many people missing.” 

Europe has always been free of natural disasters on such a magnitude. And it turns out that even such regions of single blessedness cannot escape the devastating natural catastrophes as seen today. 

The Asia-Pacific region is disproportionately affected by climate change. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the 10 most devastating disasters in 2019 were all climate and weather-related. According to the United Nations, climate-related risks could cost the region around USD160 billion a year by 2030.

So far, global discussions on climate action have focused on mitigation. And rightfully so. Investing in more renewables, moving away from coal and curbing greenhouse gas emissions must be prioritized. At the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank we agree that aggressive mitigation measures are absolutely critical if we are to reach the commitments made under the Paris Agreement. 

At the same time, we believe the world must pay greater attention to adaptation. This is especially relevant to a region like Asia and the Pacific where many developing countries are already dealing with the adverse economic, environmental and health impacts of climate change on farming patterns, water supplies and natural disasters. For many low-income countries, the transition period is likely to be protracted. Investment in climate adaptation is acutely needed now. 

In 2018, climate finance amounted to more than USD600 billion globally. But with nearly all of that spent on mitigation (renewable energy, energy efficiency, among others), only five percent was invested in adaptation. And of that small portion, only about one percent came from the private sector.

The annual adaptation financing gap now sits at around USD70 billion, according to the UN. Ensuring sufficient investment in adaptation is far from a uniquely Asian challenge; it is also an urgent task for much of the developing world.

As I have already noted, the private sector is shying away from adaptation investments, leaving them to governments and multilateral development banks to fund. But stressed government balance sheets are faced with the dual challenge of climate change and recovery from the pandemic. This means the current pool of available capital is inadequate. 

So who will step up?

Now with the increasing relevance of ESG investing as the next growth frontier in asset management, and the integration of sustainability factors in investment decisions, we are starting to see a meaningful reshaping of behavior in global markets. However, the continued shift to sustainable investing and its implementation will require leadership, a culture of innovation and effective engagement with all stakeholders.  

One area where we see great potential for the private sector to support investing in climate finance is in the scaling up of technology for climate resilience. Advancements in technology can increase the strength and safety of infrastructure through data collection and utilizing analytics to inform better decisions. Innovations can turn air into water for drought plagued areas. New technologies can provide early warning systems to communities facing extreme weather events. These technologies can save lives, mainstream climate adaptation and resilience into infrastructure investments and bring us closer to global climate goals.  

Pockets of new technology use and innovation do already exist in infrastructure, but their application has been sluggish. This is because of a lack of awareness in many developing countries of their potential use in industry and infrastructure. For example, 64 percent of stakeholders in infrastructure cite lack of understanding as the main barrier to adopting appropriate technology. COVID-19 has, however, been a game changer by rapidly heightening awareness of the many and varied uses of technologies.  

But there are other challenges to more widespread use of climate adaptation technology, not least the huge digital divide and the lack of a conducive ecosystem for infrastructure technologies, or “infratech”. According to AIIB research, more than 50 percent of the global digital infrastructure gap will be in Asia by 2040. Although the private sector is already actively investing in this growing market, it is not enough. The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the depth of the digital divide, with a lack of reliable internet causing many countries to struggle with the transition online. 

Funds specifically earmarked for innovation in climate adaptation are lacking and the private sector therefore needs to be incentivized. The biggest dampener on infrastructure investors’ interest in infratech solutions is the fear of an illiquid asset that is likely to underperform and become stranded. AIIB and its partners are looking to offer solutions to the bottlenecks blocking digital infrastructure investment, such as longer maturities and appropriate financing instruments that leverage their balance sheets. 

Ultimately, what is needed is an ecosystem. A propitious system of financial infrastructure that will encourage institutional investors to ramp up their efforts for adaptation financing. AIIB will continue to play an important role in mobilizing private capital into emerging-market climate mitigation and adaptation finance by helping to shore up this ecosystem. We are forging new partnerships and committing to projects that crowd in more private capital to sustainable infrastructure projects while applying a rigorous framework of best practices to our own projects. 

The post-crisis recovery presents policymakers with an opportunity to align public policies more closely with climate objectives, thereby limiting the risk of locking-in carbon-intensive infrastructure. Stimulus packages can be designed to promote greater investment in energy efficiency, renewables and low-carbon technologies and solutions.

Ladies and gentlemen, fostering international solidarity to combat climate change is a step in the right direction. Attaining the goal of net-zero by 2050-2060 as pledged by OECD countries, China and other developing countries calls for strenuous efforts which should not be disrupted for the next three to four decades. There can be no other option. 

AIIB wants to help our members to leapfrog, so that infrastructure projects are designed and created for a sustainable tomorrow. Investment opportunities abound for those with the vision and the commitment to be part of the solution on climate change.

 

2021年7月30日
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