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11 May 2022

Panama’s Partnership Plan Demonstrates Enhanced Ambition

From Left: Dr. Pablo Vieira, NDC Partnership Global Director; Dr. Ligia Castro de Doens, Climate Change Advisor at the Ministry of Environment of Panama; and Dr. Guadalupe González, Electricity Director, National Energy Secretariat

To support the implementation of its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), the Government of Panama launched its Partnership Plan in March of 2022 before a community of Development Partners and implementing agencies. Based on its updated 2020 NDC, Panama’s Partnership Plan is firmly aligned with 15 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and provides increased transparency and advanced action for Panama’s ambitious climate agenda.

In 2019, the Government of Panama began the process of developing its Partnership Plan. After submitting its updated NDC to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in December of 2020, the Government of Panama reviewed and identified their national priorities through extensive consultations with partners across academia, the public sector, the private sector and civil society, including youth and indigenous communities. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of Panama is now focused on stabilizing and balancing its fiscal accounts, reactivating economic growth, and reducing poverty. Panama’s 2020 Economic Recovery Plan included short- and medium-term measures to mitigate impacts from the pandemic.

Building on the work of the Economic Recovery Plan, the newly updated NDC and Partnership Plan address infrastructural, ecological, and human vulnerability to climate change. The updated NDC represents an opportunity to innovate and advance solutions to three of the main development challenges facing Panama: poverty, gender inequality, and intergenerational gaps. In addition, Panama’s updated NDC and the resulting Partnership Plan demonstrate a paradigm shift where climate resilience, circular economy principles, and low-carbon development are placed at the center of the development agenda, and climate targets can be considered within development priorities and policies.

Panama’s Partnership Plan is a milestone for the country, as evidenced by the number of people who joined the in-person event and the nearly 200 people that joined remotely to learn about Panama’s climate targets. The launch event was attended by regional representatives of implementing agencies and multilateral banks, such as the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), United Nations Development Program (UNDP), Inter-American Development Bank (IDP), World Bank, Development Bank of Latin America (CAF), and multiple representatives from Panama’s Diplomatic Corps and sectoral entities responsible for compliance with Panama’s NDC. 


Panama’s ambitious goals will only be achieved if they are met with a high level of support from international donors and implementing agencies. The launch of the Partnership Plan highlights efforts underway by the Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) and the Ministry of the Environment (Miambiente) to mainstream climate change in public investment planning, including a national tagging system that tracks climate expenditures and measure national efforts to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to increase resilience to climate change. As a result of the collaboration between Miambiente and MEF, the Partnership Plan included concrete targets that will help optimize the capture, use, and tracking of international climate finance. The collaboration between the MEF and the financial sector to track climate financing and measure climate risk will also serve as an effective reference point for the wider region.

The Panama Partnership Plan is now open to expressions of interest from donors and Implementing Partners. In less than two months, the Plan’s proposal has received responses from seven members of the NDC Partnership, covering more than 60% of requests for support, while other members are still reviewing the proposal to offer their contributions. The Partnership Plan aligns with Panama’s NDC, including key priorities: 

  1. Establishing the National Climate Financing Plan for the Ministries of Environment, Economy and Finance as well as for national banks, 

  1. Increasing the participation of the private sector in circular economy plans in Panama, 

  1. Promoting the Energy Transition Agenda in Panama, 

  1. Improving national GHG inventories in alignment with the modalities, procedures and guidelines for the Enhanced Transparency Framework of the Paris Agreement, 

  1. Promoting transversality through the inclusion of indigenous regions and rural populations, the implementation of the Gender and Climate Change Plan, and the sustainability of the Youth Leadership Academy on Climate Change in Panama, 

  1. Implementing pilot projects in communities and sectors, including municipal action plans, the Reduce your Corporate Footprint program, the Reduce your Water Footprint program, and restoration projects in mangroves and peatlands to reduce GHG emissions, and 

  1. Developing an updated and more ambitious NDC, and monitoring and evaluating implementation progress. 

For more information or a copy of Panama's Partnership Plan, please reach out to Julianne Baker-Gallegos at julianne.baker-gallegos@ndcpartnership.org

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