Guatemala faces challenges around loss of natural resources, deforestation, increased soil and water pollution, and growing waste levels. These impact the natural environment and have socio-economic consequences, compounding vulnerability and exclusion. The country’s Environmental Fiscal Strategy presents a set of fiscal instruments to improve pricing of harmful economic activities, thus supporting national climate change and sustainability objectives.
Guatemala joined PAGE in 2018 to help reformulate economic policies around sustainability to support social inclusion, green jobs and green growth.
PAGE first met with national counterparts in September 2018 to set the objectives for the programme. Possible entry points explored include:
1) Operationalising the National Development Plan K’atun Nuestra Guatemala 2032, through implementation of the Environmental Fiscal Strategy;
2) Assisting development of a public investment strategy for climate change adaptation and mitigation;
3) Supporting sectoral policy reform concerning greenhouse gas emissions, solid waste and water management, renewable energy and energy efficiency; and
4) Supporting national commitments to the SDGs and NDCs.
In 2018, the Ministry of Public Finance was restructured. This was followed by general elections in 2019, with a new President to assume office in January 2020. As a result, the inception phase has been extended to 2020, with focus on completing a national green economy stocktaking, a joint PAGE mission to identify priorities and mobilise stakeholders, and foundational capacity development.
- Guatemala joins PAGE
- Mission to Guatemala conducted to set the objectives of PAGE work
- Ministry of Public Finance restructured
- General elections held, with the President to assume office in January 2020
- Terms of reference for a national inventory of IGE related policies/initiatives and national coordinator developed
- Workplan and budget for Guatemala’s inception phase developed
- Discussions regarding South-South exchange with Uruguay following Green Economy Academy
- Memorandum of understanding prepared to serve as the framework for cooperation under new administration (to be signed in early 2020)
- Joint PAGE mission to Guatemala planned to engage new government
Progress in 2019: A snapshot
Establishing the foundation for PAGE support
Through an official letter, the Minister of Public Finance reconfirmed commitment to PAGE and requested support for the development of a National Inventory of Policies and Initiatives related to green economy along with capacity development activities. On this basis, PAGE is proceeding with the recruitment of the national coordinator and initiation of a green economy stocktaking study. A joint PAGE mission is planned in early 2020 to engage with new members of the administration, launch PAGE and build momentum. A workplan for Guatemala’s inception phase was agreed. These start-up activities will build the foundation for achieving outcome one aimed at shaping national policymaking around IGE principles and contribute to SGD 17 by supporting multi-stakeholder partnerships.
Building capacity to support change
A key feature of the 2019-2020 country workplan is foundational capacity building to raise awareness on options for a green transition and facilitate inclusion of private sector, academia and civil society stakeholders, thus broadening the green economy discourse in the country. For example, a stakeholder roundtable with public, private and civil society stakeholders on measuring and framing progress towards a green economy through indicators is planned.
Additional trainings on natural resource protection and green industrial policy will be delivered in collaboration with local partners to promote behavioural change in various economic sectors. These activities are designed to contribute to SDGs 4, 8, 12 and 17 by ensuring all stakeholders acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable production and consumption patterns, and by enhancing partnerships for Sustainable Development. They will serve as the basis for achieving outcome three.