France wants to join Bangladesh's efforts in terms of adapting to climate change with financial and technical assistance, taking some inspiration from Bangladesh which is at the forefront of vulnerability to climate change.

"You have started to adapt to climate change long ago because you are at the forefront. So your experience is quite pioneering. And we want to take some inspiration from that and support you, at the same time with financial and technical assistance," French Ambassador to Bangladesh Marie Masdupuy told a small group of journalists including UNB correspondent at her residence on Wednesday.

Bangladesh and France are likely to sign a Climate Adaptation Pact worth 1 billion euro ($1.1 billion) during a planned visit by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to France this year.

"You are all aware that we are going to endorse an adaptation pact aimed at supporting your country in adapting to the effects of climate change. This will be endorsed during the upcoming visit of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to France. A date is still being searched," said the ambassador.

She said this adaptation pact is coming with a 1 billion euro package, which are mainly concessional loans.

It will mainly be implemented through Agence Française de Développement (AFD) with the government of Bangladesh in association with civil society and local actors.

"Because adaptation has to be a bottom up approach as it touches the people in their territories where they are based," said the ambassador.

She said the government is here to support and implement some investments in various areas, which will enhance the adaptation capabilities of Bangladesh's people, especially in some areas, like coastal areas.

"So there will be a range of projects, investments by our development bank - AFD. In cooperation with your government, relevant ministries with other actors including civil society organizations and the youth who are very active and knowledgeable," she said.

She laid emphasis on engaging with academia because research is fundamental.

The ambassador said France and their partners in Europe are particularly mobilized to push for accelerated decisions when it comes to transitioning out of fossil fuel, and all the different issues which are on the table within the framework of the COP.

Building on Hasina's visit to France in November 2021, at his invitation, President Emmanuel Macron paid a bilateral visit to Bangladesh from 10-11 September 2023.

Bangladesh and France believe in the strength of bilateral and international cooperation in the face of the climate emergency.

Following up on the Paris Summit for a New Global Finance Pact, whose recommendations Bangladesh endorses, Bangladesh and France jointly called for the swift implementation of the Paris Pact for People and the Planet and for the mobilization of additional financing from all sources for development, climate and biodiversity, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs here.

Bangladesh and France also believe global efforts to facilitate access to climate finance for developing countries should be accelerated further.

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