|European Commission Directorate-General For International Cooperation And Development|
|European Investment Bank (EIB)|
|Agence Française De Développement (AFD)|
The European Commission's Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development is committed to sustainable urban development finance by leveraging domestic and international public and private finance through the EU blending mechanism: a combination of EU grants with loans or equity from private or public financiers, such as the European Investment Bank (EIB) or the Agence Française de Développement (AFD). This approach complements the provision of official development aid and supports domestic revenue generation. Over the past eight years, around EUR 2 billion worth of EU funds have financed over 240 blended projects. 24% of these funds were invested in social infrastructure related to access to clean water, waste treatment, housing, health, urban development, as well as preserving the environment. The EU blending framework is a prime example of how to mobilise resources through partnerships – based on the principle of equity and solidarity with people in vulnerable situations. The event will explore how both traditional and more innovative forms of blending could be applied in the context of urban challenges faced in the Africa-Caribbean-Pacific and Southern Neighbourhood countries, by drawing on several examples from both within and outside the European Union. It will underline the importance for national urban policies (which set legal and policy frameworks) to integrate and streamline financial strategies (funding and financial management aspects) for sustainable urban development in line with territorial approach to local development. It will also demonstrate how public grants can be used more strategically, and in a catalytic way, to mobilise other means of implementation and maximise their impact. Finally, the event will showcase concrete examples of co-financing with the EIB and the AFD illustrating innovative possibilities for local authorities to be directly benefitting from operations financed by international sources.