Climate Webinar #6: Green Finance - A Step towards a Greener Economy

Wednesday, July 21

Mr. Krzysztof Michalak, Senior Program Manager, Environment Directorate, Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development
Ms. Farah Hussain, Senior Financial Officer and Sustainable Finance Specialist, Treasury, World Bank

Ms. Tatiana Evdokimova, Economist, Joint Vienna Institute

This sixth webinar of the JVI webinar series on climate change economics focused on the topic of green finance. The transition to a low-carbon economy requires substantial investments and mobilization of financial resources. Scaling up green finance is one of the key factors for delivering on ambitious climate change mitigation targets. A well-functioning financial system with a clear focus on sustainability is capable of channeling much needed funding towards green projects, technologies and research. Yet the lack of clarity about which activities can be defined as green remains an impediment to green finance development. At the same time, the benefits of creating harmonized and consistent global climate disclosure standards are becoming increasingly relevant. While some countries have already made considerable progress towards better climate-related data disclosure, others are still only at the start of this journey.

Farah Hussain presented guidelines for financial sector regulators to develop national green taxonomies. Krzysztof Michalak gave an overview of green finance developments in the EECCA (Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia) region in recent years. The panelists named fragmented sources of domestic finance, low project preparation capacity and shallow domestic financial markets as the key challenges of scaling up green finance in the region. The speakers recommended to stimulate green finance development by strengthening statistical information, creating pipeline of green projects, mainstreaming environmental concerns and incorporating green measures in the COVID-19 related economic recovery packages.

The JVI focus on climate change 

If greenhouse gas emissions continue unabated, global temperatures will keep on rising at an unprecedented pace, with catastrophic implications for lives and livelihoods worldwide. Economic policy has a pivotal role to play in changing the ways we produce and consume in order to slow climate change. 

Countries in the JVI region will not be spared the economic costs of rising temperatures nor the difficult task of transforming their economies within the next thirty years to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Yet, this transformation also holds opportunities for countries in the region, such as public investment-triggered growth, good quality green jobs, and better health from reduced air pollution. 

In this context, the JVI will offer two new courses on the economics of climate change. The first one, “Climate Change and Green Finance”, coordinated by the Austrian Federal Ministry of Finance and the Austrian National Bank, took place for the first time June 14-18, 2021. The second one, “Climate Change Economics”, coordinated by the JVI faculty, will take place September 13-17, 2021. We encourage you to visit the course page and apply. 

To accompany these two courses, the JVI is running a webinar series on selected issues in climate change economics. In discussion with experts from the JVI partner organizations, academia, central banks, and other institutions, we are shedding light on topics such as the political economy of climate change, carbon taxation, the role of financial sector oversight, and macroeconomic modelling – with a special focus on the JVI region.

Tatiana Evdokimova, Economist, JVI


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