Egyptian Parliamentarian Sahar Albazar has launched the “Ubuntu Initiative”, a global initiative by parliament members from Egypt, Ghana, Senegal and Indonesia that seeks to create a new financial architecture that eases the debts facing lower middle-income countries and place them on the path to a greener economy.
The title comes from the South African philosophy of “Ubuntu”, which translates to “I am because you are,” and reflects the shared struggles of mankind.
The initiative has already drawn support from 42 countries, including Ukraine, and has been raised to figures such as French President Emmanuel Macron, G20 Sherpa of India Amitabh Kant, US Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen, the President of the World Bank Group Ajay Banga and Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund Kristalina Georgieva.
It covers three main steps to achieve its goals, the first being the implementation of debt swaps for climate change investments.
Countries facing debt can swap it for investments in climate-friendly projects, freeing them of debt pressures and encouraging sustainable development paths.
The next stage of the initiative is pausing debt services. This will allow countries to instead direct their financial resources towards efforts for adapting and mitigating climate change.
It will also give lower middle-income countries the space and freedom to invest in renewable energy and environmentally friendly initiatives without sacrificing their economic growth.
And the last step involves establishing a transparent debt-relief framework for lower middle-income countries.