The Coalition was proud to be invited by the Austrian Ministry of Finance to present the flagship guide at a panel shaped event. We learned that the Austrian Ministry of Finance, alongside other departments, has coordinated and taken a number of important actions to mainstream climate change into their operations.  These actions include:

  • Austria has targeted net zero by 2040, one decade before the rest of the EU.
  • No new coal investments.
  • 100% renewable energy by 2030.
  • Further implementing the pricing of CO2 emissions within the framework of the national ETS, conducted in gradual manner, whilst preparing for the implementation of EU ETS 2, an ongoing process of interdepartmental cooperation will be intensified.
  • Expanding the green Budget screening methodology to the regional and sub- national levels through spending review and integrating greenhouse gas estimates in the green budgeting framework.
  • Eco-Social Tax Reform 2022- aims at strengthening social inclusion and combating climate change, thus contributing to expected annual greenhouse gas emission savings of 2.6 million tons by 2030 compared to the baseline-scenario. To reach such objectives, the reform introduces a national CO2 price on fossil energy sources(starting at € 30 in 2022 and to be gradually lifted to € 55 in 2025, followed by market-based price formation from 2026 onwards), and a tax relief worth of € 18 billion by 2025 for people and businesses, comprising i.a. lower personal and corporate income tax rates, a higher “Family Bonus Plus” and relief measures for low-income households. A “Regional Climate Bonus” serves to mitigate the impact of carbon pricing on individuals.
  • Financial sector reform – by expanding “Green Financial literacy”, strengthening of green project financing, issuing of green bonds and securities and measurement and monitoring of climate-friendly financial flows.
  • Implementing recovery and resilience plan, which includes a spending reviews analysis of the subsidies and incentives with climate and energy policy.

Director General Harald Waiglein, Directorate of Economic Policy and Financial Markets at the Austrian Ministry of Finance opened the proceedings, before handing over to Coalition-Sherpa for Austria, Elisabeth Vitzthum to chair the event.

Pekka Morén, special representative for the Ministry of Finance of Finland and country champion of the Coalition’s Helsinki Principle 2 workstream, then introduced the flagship guide. Technical experts and lead Institutional Partner in producing the flagship guide, Nick Godfrey and Anika Heckwolf from the LSE Grantham Institute, gave a technical presentation of the framework offered in the guide, before Pekka Morén linked the guide to the next steps of capacity building by the Coalition (slides of the presentation are available here).

A panel discussion then followed. Director General Harald Waiglein, Anika Heckwolf, and Pekka Morén, were joined by Fabio Rumler, Head of the Department of International Economics at Oesterreichische Nationalbank and Frank van Lerven, Coordinator at the Coalition’s Secretariat and lead of C3As debt sustainability hub.