Preparatory meetings of the GRULAC were chaired by Nicaragua and the rapporteur from Chile. More than 75 delegates from the countries of the region, the Secretariat members and one delegate of CSO as observer participated in the meetings. The Executive Secretary Ibrahim Thiaw made the opening inviting the parties to identify paths and join efforts to fight against desertification and remembered that Latin America and the Caribbean have been severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic increasing the consequences of land degradation and drought. Six presentations were made by Secretariat members.
The main points addressed during the meetings were – to establish a new fund for the improvement of financial support mechanisms for transformative projects and programs or make the LDN Fund, led by Mirova, more flexible, and that profitability and Internal Rate Return criteria should not be an impediment to accessing the financial support in land investments; – improve the definition of drought and formulate policies based on early warning of risk management, while also remembering that cooperation between stakeholders is necessary to fight drought with programs or projects that cover regions and not just a specific country; – crucial participation of communities in the understanding of vulnerability, resilience and adaptation to extreme drought events. During the second preparatory meeting, Mr. Pablo Motta a CSO’s observer requested the floor and presented to the Parties, members of GRULAC, the draft CSO statements for CRIC19 on policy frameworks related to gender, drought and land tenure.