Phnom Penh, 28-29 July 2016: General Secretariat of the National Council for Sustainable Development (GSSD) in cooperation with the Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology (MoWRAM) and the Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT) with support of Cambodia Climate Change Alliance (CCCA) organized individual workshops to present the result of work done to improve integration of climate change in the investment programmes and budget submissions of the ministries of water resources and meteorology, and public works and transport.
The meetings were chaired respectively by H.E.Vasim Sorya, Director General of Administration of MPWT, and H.E. Ponh Sachak, Director General of Technical Affairs of MOWRAM. In each ministry, three of the investments proposed for the 2017 budget have been analyzed through a cost-benefit analysis comparing the performance of climate-proofed and non-climate-proofed designs in the context of climate change. For five of the six case studies, climate-proofing costs represented an 8 to 11% increase on standard costs, but they provided much higher benefits because they could continue to operate under worsening climate conditions (such as flood and drought). An initial group staff has been trained on these techniques, and both ministries have requested continuous support from CCCA in this area. This is expected to help MOWRAM and MPWT negotiate for climate-proofing of their investments with both development partners and Ministry of Economy and Finance.
Mr. Ma Chan Sethea, Department Director of Administration, Planning and Finance, GSSD, emphasized that this is the second year that CCCA provides this type of support, after an initial pilot with MAFF in 2015. Climate-proofing of agriculture and infrastructure programmes is essential to ensure continued services to the people, even during extreme climate events such as the drought this year. This was officially mentioned as a requirement in the budget circular for 2017.
Next steps have been agreed to use this analysis in the budget negotiations with MEF, and to improve the way climate change is reflected in the sector strategies, in the Budget Strategic Plans and budgets of both ministries. Additional analysis and training may be conducted next year.
The workshops were organized separately by the ministries and attended by 23 and 27 senior officials respectively from MOWRAM and MPWT. CCCA also held a briefing with MEF officials and with H.E. Ros Seilava, Under-Secretary of State at MEF, to share the results of this analysis, and discuss recommendations to further improve climate change mainstreaming in public financial management reforms. In particular, it was agreed that NCSD and CCCA would support the integration of climate-smart indicators in the programme budgets of the Government.