Financing Sub-Saharan Africa’s Climate Action

Implementing Green Public Finance Management (PFM) in Debt Distressed Countries


Green growth - where economies grow without adding to their carbon intensity - is evident across sub-Saharan Africa’s major geographies. In the West, East, and Southern Africa (excluding South Africa) regions, carbon intensity is currently the same as it was a decade ago, despite high levels of economic growth over this period.

Nonetheless, sub-Saharan Africa is the region most vulnerable to climate change. African countries need $2.8tn during 2020-2030 to implement their climate action commitments. At the same time, the global supply of bilateral and multilateral funding is not nearly enough to cover this. 

Woman working on a solar panel installation.

The Paris Summit on a New Global Financing Pact (convened in June 2023) certainly made progress in building a consensus on what the future of climate funding needs to look like. However, as noted by the Climate Action Network International, a lot more money is needed to make this new consensus a reality. African governments are unable to finance their climate responses beyond the 10% of cost already committed due to existing high levels of public debt.


This report looks at how a focus on Green PFM will enable indebted countries to transform their financial management towards a more sustainable fiscal position and climate-focussed public expenditure, and gives practical examples of how governments can approach debt management.


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Craig Kesson

Craig Kesson

Director | Public Sector and Infrastructure Transformation Capability Leader, PwC South Africa

Tel: +27 (0) 21 529 2000

Nasreen Mosam

Nasreen Mosam

Director, PwC South Africa

Tel: +27 (0) 11 287 0973

Lullu Krugel

Lullu Krugel

Director | Africa and Southern Africa Sustainability Platform Leader, PwC South Africa

Tel: +27 (0) 82 708 2330

Christie Viljoen

Christie Viljoen

Senior Manager, PwC South Africa

Tel: +27 (0) 82 472 8621