Mobilising Investment for Clean Energy in EMDEs (MICEE) 

5 December 2023 | 4 PM 

Boardroom of the International Emissions Trading Association (IETA) Business Hub Pavilion - Blue Zone



1. I would like to thank the World Economic Forum (WEF) for having me here. Based on what we have seen in the COP28, the fact is that financing and its various facets is likely THE key topic when it comes to climate action

2. While I represent Malaysia, I think this sentiment is shared across Southeast Asia and indeed, Asia or even beyond as my colleagues in government here may attest to. How to pay for climate action, in a way that is effective, inclusive and transparent, seems to be the missing piece in addressing climate change. 

3. There have been many debates and these will likely continue even after COP28, although it must be stressed that some very welcome progress has been made. As such, this initiative on mobilising investment for clean energy in emerging markets and developing economies (EMDEs) is very welcome and necessary. 

4. There is an excellent panel ahead of us and so, with your indulgence, I will limit my remarks to briefly introduce what Malaysia is doing as well as some general thoughts on the subject. 


5. Malaysia’s energy transition is marked by several key announcements and initiatives: 

a) Ambitious Renewable Energy Goals: Malaysia has set a target of achieving 70% renewable energy installed capacity by 2050.

b) The National Energy Transition Roadmap (NETR): which seeks to position Malaysia as a regional leader in energy transition and the renewable energy industry, including via 10 flagship projects 6 of which are championed by the NRECC and its various agencies. 

c) We have lifted a ban on cross-border renewable energy trading and hope that this can foster collaboration with neighbouring countries. 

d) We have also relaxed solar rules to allow more domestic users, factories, and offices to boost solar power adoption nationally. 

e) By 2024, Malaysia will establish a Renewable Energy (RE) exchange. 

f) We’re also developing a National Carbon Market Policy to help reduce emissions. 

g) We have and will continue to support efforts towards the realisation of an ASEAN Power Grid

6. Malaysia has proactively done a lot. We could and would still do much more; and be even more ambitious, if we had more support, whether financial or technical. 


7. To put things into perspective, Malaysia alone needs RM1.2 trillion (approx. USD260 billion) between 2023—2050 for its energy transition—what more the wider ASEAN region. Within this decade alone, Malaysia requires between RM60—90 billion (approx. USD12.9—19.3 billion) to fund projects critical to our transition

8. This includes the expansion of public transportation, the strengthening of grid infrastructure, and the upskilling of our workforce. I would say a particular need will be a robust, flexible grid to accommodate the growing share of renewable energy sources. The needed investment required for grid development is substantial, totalling an estimated RM180 billion (approx. USD38.6 billion) up until 2050 to develop a grid capable of accommodating our clean energy ambitions. 

9. Also, considering the countries' respective circumstances, including the fact that some have nascent decarbonization technologies, it must be acknowledged that the transition progress to a certain extent depends on alternative energy sources and robust regional and international collaboration. 


10. The goalposts should not keep changing. It should not be the case that some countries, who are wealthy now but who have benefitted from exploiting the environment of other countries in the past, are allowed to be “pragmatic” when it comes to climate change, while developing ones are held to stricter, uncompromising standards. That surely is an unacceptable form of climate injustice that must be addressed, including via climate finance. 

11. We welcome the recent announcements regarding The Loss and Damage Fund and we congratulate the COP28 Presidency on what it has accomplished. Still, we hope that it can be made available to all developing countries and not just the least developed or small island states.

12. Also, other global financial institutions, such as the European Investment Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the Asian Infrastructure and Investment Bank and African Development Bank Group ought to be involved. One institution should not have a monopoly. We hope that adjustments can be made in the spirit of common sense and fair play. 

13. We hope that the international private sector will see that a successful, equitable energy transition will be crucial to ensuring that not only is climate change addressed, but that it will also help the EMDEs to move up the value chain, strengthening them as investment propositions and even contributing to the global economic recovery. 

14. Malaysia is certainly prepared to consider ways the private sector can be accommodated into our energy transition. There is much work to be done. I trust today’s session will provide us with more insight on how we can keep moving things forward. Thank you.