AfDB Launches African Urban and Municipal Development Fund

  • The African Development Bank has launched the Urban and Municipal Development Fund
  • The multi-donor trust fund aims to scale up interventions in urban development and drive sustainable growth in cities across the African continent.

The launch event, held last Wednesday, 3 April 2019 at the Bank’s Abidjan headquarters, was attended by members of the business and diplomatic community in Cote d’Ivoire, development partners and donors, senior management of the Bank, representatives of municipalities from several African countries, and key players and stakeholders in the urban development space.

Senior Bank officials at the launch described it as a timely response to the challenges of rapid urbanization in Africa and the strong need for integrated city planning expertise. They also thanked the initial donors – the Nordic Development Fund (NDF), Wallonia Export Investment Agency (AWEX) and the Secretariat of Economic Affairs of the Swiss Confederation – for their commitment to the fund.

Discussions and presentations centred on how the UMDF could assist cities in drafting their master plans for urban development, support dialogue between national and local governance structures and create learning opportunities between cities. The first oversight meeting between the partners was also held after the launch event, to discuss practical implementation of the fund and the eligibility of cities for accessing the fund.

The UMDF is designed to improve resilience and better manage urban growth, by means of tailored technical assistance to municipalities and urban entities in the areas of urban planning and mobility, project preparation, and municipal governance and finance.

The fund will focus on areas identified as being detrimental to accessing finance, the main ones being the preparation, management and implementation of bankable projects by municipalities, updates to master plans, the review of the regulatory environment to facilitate access to market financing and the use of tools to manage and deliver municipal services.

Author: Bryan Groenendaal

 

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