South Africa is the most industrialized country on the African continent and has experienced economic growth averaging 1.9% per capita since 2000. However, income disparity has been widening and unemployment remains high. South Africa´s industrialization, along with its reliance on coal and natural resources has resulted in high greenhouse gas emissions and a large ecological footprint. Recognizing these challenges, the South African government is set on transitioning towards an environmentally sustainable, climate-change resilient, low-carbon economy and just society. A member of the BRICS, South Africa is increasingly taking responsibility for global environmental challenges becoming a leader in its region in green economic policies. South Africa’s vision is outlined in numerous national policies including in the National Strategy for Sustainable Development and Action Plan, the New Growth Path, and the National Development Plan. With innovative policies for green funding and green jobs in place, South Africa has already embarked on its green economy transition.
PAGE objectives in South Africa
South Africa has made significant strides in developing an enabling policy framework for the promotion of a green economy transition, with the hallmark adoption of the Green Economy Accord in 2011 and National Development Plan in 2012, infusing significant political support to address the interdependence between economic growth, social protection and the natural ecosystem. Public resources have backed investments in a range of economic sectors, and national programmes have been initiated to promote the country’s transition to a climate-resilient, resource-efficient and pro-employment development path.
PAGE offers South Africa a unique set of tools, expertise and networks that would respond to the diverse and rapidly evolving opportunities for greening the South African economy. PAGE intends to contribute to better policy coordination, support collaboration and help improve human capacities. Support will focus on implementing the existing national green economy policies, through capacity building among learning institutions, national and provincial Government institutions and collaborating partners. PAGE support is being designed to reinforce and complement other support programmes on green economy such as those initiated by GIZ and UN agencies, such as SWITCH Africa Green (by UNEP and UNDP) and International Climate Initiative programme implemented by GIZ in South Africa.
South Africa has developed a set of priorities for PAGE action which are integrated and mainstreamed into existing national processes. The country outcomes formulated for South Africa, while aligned with PAGE global outcomes, highlight the key inception activities of PAGE which have been endorsed by national partners:
COUNTRY OUTCOME 1: Improved Collaboration and Coordination of Green Economy Policy, Planning and Implementation Processes through Multi-stakeholder Collaboration and aligned with the SDGs and Nationally Determined Contributions under the Paris Agreement. The initial activities which have been identified under this outcome include:
- Green Economy Inventory for South Africa
- Green Economy Knowledge Platform
- Multi-Stakeholder Dialogue
COUNTRY OUTCOME 2: Potential and Enabling Factors for Green Opportunities in Selected Economic Sectors / Industrial Segments Explored, Informing Proposals for Sector Reform. The inception activity which has been initiated is the South Africa Green Economy Trade and Industry Analysis
COUNTRY OUTCOME 3: Strengthened Capabilities through Enhanced Green Economy Learning including Training Courses and Knowledge Sharing
- Green Economy Learning Assessment for South Africa
South Africa Joins PAGE
PAGE Inter-agency Scoping Mission
National Steering Committee constituted
National Multi-Stakeholder PAGE Forum convened during Sustainability Week
Stakeholder Roundtable held on the Green Economy Learning Assessment
National Workshop convened to share the findings of the Green Economy Inventory
National Workshop held to share the findings of the Green Economy Learning Assessment