Leading the charge is ICLEI, which operates the Transformative Actions Program (TAP). The TAP Program is designed to support local and regional governments in project preparation and accessing finance for low-carbon and climate-resilient development. Together with UTMC, TAP recently organized a Virtual Marketplace on November 22, 2023, in collaboration with the Global Covenants of Mayors ().
Financing Opportunities and Schemes Unveiled
The event, attended by 45 participants, focused on presenting diverse funding sources and innovative financial schemes tailored to facilitate sustainable urban development. This included a live session of project pitching where four cities showcased ambitious urban development ideas. The jury panel, featuring representatives from Catalytic Finance, UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), and Cities Commission for Climate Investment (3Ci), provided direct and constructive feedback, fostering collaboration and knowledge-sharing.
Session 1: Financing Opportunities and Schemes
Representatives from international financial institutions (IFIs) and Project Preparation Facilities (PPFs) presented their initiatives and services. The presentations covered a wide range of topics, including:
- The City Climate Finance Gap Fund, which provides technical assistance and funding for urban projects in the planning or strategy development stages.
- The International Municipal Investment Fund (IMIF), which supports the development of sustainable investment-ready projects in secondary cities located in least developed countries.
- The Subnational Climate Fund (SCF), which provides capacity building, blended finance, and technical support for cities developing mid-size climate resilient and low-carbon infrastructure projects.
- The Cities Commission for Climate Investment (3Ci), which offers blended finance models, a National Net Zero project pipeline, and the Investible Cities Facility to support local authorities in delivering investment-ready projects.
Session 2: Project Pitching
Prior to the event, each city underwent tailored preparation and assistance through the TAP Program. The Project Pitching session allowed cities to test their project ideas in front of a jury, empowering them to understand criteria and expectations of financial partners, getting connected to relevant organisations, and learning about upcoming opportunities to further their urban sustainable infrastructure projects.
The four cities that presented their ambitious urban development ideas using the TAP methodology were:
- Malang, Indonesia: “Decarbonization Plant: Energy Recovery in Supit Urang Sanitary Landfill to Achieve Circular Economy of Integrated Waste Management in Malang”
- Oldham, Greater Manchester, United Kingdom: “Oldham Green New Deal Community Energy Partnership”
- Contagem, Brazil: “Contagem and sustainable climate through photovoltaic energy”
- Menjez, Lebanon: “Production of green electricity from wind turbines to complement the existing hybrid system PV Generators”
Key Takeaways and Recommendations
The jury’s recommendations focused on clear problem descriptions, expected results and impact, financial indicators, and connection with and eligibility for financial and technical opportunities. Participants gained a better understanding of existing opportunities and learned that proper project preparation is crucial for success.
Enhancing Collaboration and Future Opportunities
The event not only facilitated direct interaction between local governments and financial institutions but also strengthened collaboration between cities, IFIs and PPFs. The mentoring process served as a valuable capacity building exercise, strengthening technical and conceptual aspects of projects and crafting compelling pitch narratives. This acquired knowledge will empower local governments to be more successful in future project presentations.
Recommendations received will be further explored at the ICLEI World Congress 2024 in São Paulo, Brazil, offering additional opportunities for discussions, marketplaces, trainings, and workshops on sustainable urban development with finance as a primary focus.
In conclusion, the UTMC project and the recent TAP Marketplace stand as forerunners for local governments seeking financial support for resilient urban development, fostering collaboration and knowledge exchange on a global scale.
If you missed the event, watch the recordings here: