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15 July 2020

Strategic partnership between ICLEI and the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) will expand access to climate finance for local and subnational governments

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This partnership builds on the previous work of the two organisations to bring to bear innovative ways of blending public and private finance, ultimately enabling local governments to access funding for sustainability projects and a just economic recovery.

A new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between ICLEI Africa and the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) will enable the two organisations to align efforts and better facilitate the flow of finance to local and subnational governments to plan and implement context-specific sustainability projects.

"The DBSA’s integrated approach to infrastructure development puts the bank in a unique position to sustainably drive economic growth and social development in South Africa, and the rest of the African continent. Our role working with municipalities increases government capacity and addresses market deficiencies along the entire project development, financing and management value chain, ensuring sustainable interventions that improve quality of life for all South Africans. This MoU with ICLEI Africa complements these capabilities, ensuring that we lead with an expanding knowledge and expertise base on sustainability matters across all our local government initiatives."
Mohale Rakgate
Group Executive: Project Preparation Division , DBSA

This strategic partnership allows ICLEI Africa and DBSA to work together and co-develop programmes focused on the following:

  1. Climate finance access, including project packaging, planning and support
  2. Tools and resources, such as the Transformative Action Program (TAP), that assist subnational governments in gaining access to climate finance
  3. Training and capacity building for subnational and national government staff to actively promote financing for sustainability
  4. Networking opportunities between subnational government officials to share experiences and good practices on financing sustainability initiatives

The DBSA brings to this partnership their deep knowledge and experience of facilitating the flow of finance and packaging project pipelines to attract financing. ICLEI Africa understands sustainability processes and action at local government level, both regionally and globally, with access to an extensive body of knowledge, methodologies and tools across its more than 20 offices across the world.

"This MoU provides the means for the organisations to partner on initiatives that are appropriate for a city or region’s unique needs and context. It is timely in that consequent joint activities can assist cities and subnational governments to recover from the pandemic in a resilient way that considers not only the needs of people, but also the available natural resources in the long term."
Kobie Brand
Regional Director, ICLEI Africa

About the organisations

Development Bank of Southern Africa promotes economic development and growth, human resource development and institutional capacity building by mobilising financial and other resources from the national or international private and public sectors for sustainable development projects and programmes. The DBSA is one of only two accredited entities in South Africa for the Green Climate Fund – the biggest climate fund in the world.

ICLEI is a global network of more than 1,750 local and regional governments committed to sustainable urban development. Active in 100+ countries, ICLEI influences sustainability policy and drives local action for low emission, nature-based, equitable, resilient and circular development. Its members and team of experts work together through peer exchange, partnerships and capacity building to create systemic change for urban sustainability.

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