Monday, November 19, 2018

Save the Children calls for halt in Gavi vaccine subsidies to two pharma giants

 
The donor-funded vaccine alliance Gavi has over the last decade spent more than USD 1.2 billion out of its special fund for pneumonia vaccine, the AMC, on two Western pharma giants GSK and Pfizer. The AMC was supposed to encourage new suppliers to enter the market. Save the Children now wants Gavi to reserve the remaining AMC money for the Indian supplier Serum Institute.
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Swedish caretaker government: aid at 1% of GNI in 2019, few clues about priorities

The current Swedish administration, which is acting as a caretaker government, proposes that aid remains at 1 per cent of Gross National Income (GNI) next year, but provides few details about priorities.
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Back to Bujagali. Stepping stone for SN Power to expand in Africa

The partly aid-financed Norwegian hydropower investor SN Power bought a major stake in Uganda’s Bujagali hydropower project in July. Fifteen years ago, SN Power turned down a World Bank offer to become an owner in the project, but now the company sees its newest acquisition as a stepping stone for expansion in the African market, CEO Torger Lien tells Development Today.
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GFF health initiative fails to reach USD 2 billion replenishment target

The Global Financing Facility (GFF), a World Bank-managed trust fund for health and nutrition, raised only a fraction of the new money it needed to achieve a USD 2 billion target at its first replenishment meeting in Oslo this week.
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How Finnfund can take more risk in fragile states and pioneering projects

Finnfund raises half its project funding from private markets and is less capitalised than its Nordic sister organisations. A new special guarantee scheme is designed to make Finnfund able to invest in pioneer projects and fragile states, without jeopardising its trust with lending banks. 
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Doubts cast about GFF’s projection of 35 million lives to be saved

Global health experts question the accuracy of the Global Financing Facility’s claim that it can save up to 35 million lives by 2030. The figure is based on overly-optimistic projections of increased health spending by poor-country governments, they tell Development Today.
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Sweden turns down Norwegian-sponsored GFF health initiative

Sweden will not pledge funding for the Global Financing Facility (GFF) health initiative at a donor meeting in Oslo next month. “We have a health architecture that is already very crowded, and we do not think that we need a new structure,” says Anders Nordström, Sweden’s Global Health Ambassador, to Development Today.
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What killed budget support: ‘Schizophrenic’ donors couldn’t let go of aid conditionality

What killed budget support: ‘Schizophrenic’ donors couldn’t let go of aid conditionality

General budget support, a popular instrument in the aid tool box during the 2000s, was effective and cheaper than project aid. Donors abandoned it because of their latent mistrust of recipient governments, a new study concludes.
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Indonesia-Norway climate forest deal. Six years behind schedule, but still relevant

Norwegian result payments for Indonesian forest protection have not materialised nine years after a cooperation agreement was signed. An evaluation urges Norway to make its first carbon payment by 2020 and concludes that the bilateral deal is still relevant.
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Solheim in hot water, navigating to regain donor trust

Solheim in hot water, navigating to regain donor trust

A team of experts from UN headquarters in New York is helping the Nairobi-based UN Environment Program get its financial house in order. Following a critical audit, a new deputy has been given a key role in the agency’s sweep up, and Erik Solheim pledges to spend less time on the road.
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Travel audit rattles UNEP. Wary donors hold back EUR 16 million

The stakes are high for the UN environmental agency (UNEP) in the wake of an on-going audit which reveals excessive travel costs incurred by the agency’s leadership. Denmark, the Netherlands and Sweden are holding back EUR 16 million in grants that were originally planned to be disbursed this year.
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Report: Norway’s inefficient and confusing aid administration

In a donor landscape where most aid management is either delegated to a separate directorate or integrated into a foreign ministry, Norway is the only OECD country that splits grant management between a ministry and its aid agency, according to a new report commissioned by Development Minister Nikolai Astrup. This, the report concludes, creates both inefficiency and confusion.
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Risk of GFF health scheme becoming a debt trap for poor countries

As the Global Financing Facility (GFF) gears up for its first replenishment next month, there are warnings that by making poor countries take up World Bank loans, the ambitious health scheme could lead to increased indebtedness.
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Fragile states, energy investments top priority in Norwegian budget

Thematic priorities like clean oceans and renewable energy investments are winners in a growing Norwegian aid budget. Support for fragile states, stemming migration and combatting terror are other top priorities, while civil society and core funding to UN agencies benefit less.
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USD 2 billion replenishment target for newest global health initiative GFF

USD 2 billion replenishment target for newest global health initiative GFF

A World Bank mechanism established in 2014 to expand funding for health and nutrition is gearing up for its first replenishment meeting in November where it hopes to raise USD 2 billion from donors. The Global Financing Facility (GFF) differs from traditional health aid, its Director Mariam Claeson tells Development Today, because it links up to billions of additional dollars. How much of this money is actually new remains unclear.
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DFIs should expand, but cannot fill SDG funding gap

DFIs should expand, but cannot fill SDG funding gap

The current fad in the world of international aid is all about moving from “billions to trillions” through the mobilisation of private capital combined with blending for impact investing. Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) can and should expand and blending can help. But even with the best of intentions and efforts, DFIs will not be able to plug anything more than a fraction of the SDG funding gap.
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First Nordic test of new reporting rules for refugee aid beefs up ODA

Denmark, being the first Nordic country to use the OECD’s new reporting regime for counting domestic refugee expenses as official aid, has concluded that it can increase reporting of such aid by 60 per cent for 2017. 
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Donors hold back direct funding, betting on more UN grants to local NGOs

Western humanitarian organisations’ own progress reports on promises made in 2016 to massively increase funding to Southern-based actors are “inherently biased,” and provide little evidence of change, according to a review by ODI. Some donors are betting on UN country funds taking the lead in increasing grants for local NGOs.
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Denmark scales up education aid, part of broader strategy to stem migration

Denmark will scale up education efforts and private sector aid next year, but at the heart of the aid budget is managing “irregular migration and fighting its fundamental causes.” The Danes will expand their use of aid as a tool to return asylum seekers to their home countries in a tit-for-tat approach.
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Collier attacks ‘ideological NGOs’ for hampering development in Africa

Collier attacks ‘ideological NGOs’ for hampering development in Africa

The British economist Paul Collier delivered a frontal attack on Western NGOs at a conference in Oslo this week. “Africa needs our firms, but got … our NGOs,” he told the audience. In an interview with Development Today he nuanced his perspective. Some NGOs are “the latest manifestation of imperialism,” others are doing a great job, he said.
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Yet another lean year, but light in the tunnel for Finnish aid

The Finnish government proposes EUR 994 million in aid next year, marking the fourth lean aid budget in a row since the historic aid cuts announced in the summer of 2015. Nevertheless, the Finnish aid community sees a light in the tunnel.
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An alternative DFI: FinnChurchAid kicks off new investment firm

In a pioneering move, the Helsinki-based NGO FinnChurchAid (FCA) has launched an investment company that will manage a EUR 16 million loan from the Finnish government to be invested in small businesses in African and Asian countries, the first of its kind in the Nordic countries.
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Report: Norway’s inefficient and confusing aid administration

In a donor landscape where most aid management is either delegated to a separate directorate or integrated into a foreign ministry, Norway is the only OECD country that splits grant management between a ministry and its aid agency, according to a new report commissioned by Development Minister Nikolai Astrup. This, the report concludes, creates both inefficiency and confusion.
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Norway’s International Forest and Climate Initiative – 10 years of kissing frogs

Norway’s International Forest and Climate Initiative – 10 years of kissing frogs

The organisers of the Oslo Redd conference are profiling a little Tanzanian frog that has been named after Norway, apparently in thanks for ten years of Norwegian climate forest efforts. The Executive Director of Rainforest Foundation UK Simon Counsell takes a more sobre look at the ten-year-old initiative.
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MARKET UPDATE

SN Power buys major stake in Bujagali

SN Power, a hydropower company fully owned by Norfund, has bought two-thirds of the shares in Bujagali Energy Limited (BEL) from the investment company Blackstone. 
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IFU invests in thermal power in Mali

IFU and BWSC are investing in the 90-megawatt thermal power station in Kayes in Western Mali.
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Swedfund invests in clean energy through JCM Power

Swedfund commits to invest USD 15 million in shares of JCM Power, which develops, builds and operates solar and wind power plants in developing countries.
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IFU invests in Ukrainian solar power

In cooperation with NEFCO and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, IFU has invested in a new 36-megawatt solar cell park in the Ukraine. With a total investment of EUR 35 million, Yavoriv Solar will produce renewable energy and help to reduce carbon emissions.
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Multiconsult wins GET FiT Zambia

The Norwegian consulting firm Multiconsult has been selected to manage KfW’s renewable energy financing facility GET FiT in Zambia. It aims to provide up to 200 megawatts from small renewables. The firm has managed a similar fund in Uganda for the past four years.
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Danish investment in Ethiopian wind energy

Development Minister Ulla Tørnæs has approved DKK 600 million through Danida Business Finance for co-financing of a 100-megawatt wind park in Addis Ababa. Danish firms will be involved in the project.
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Norfund’s NOK 1.9 billion surplus for 2017

Norfund has reported a record-high profit of almost NOK 1.9 billion for 2017. The fund’s portfolio amounted to NOK 23 billion by the end of the year.
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Danish windmills for Mongolia project

The first wind turbine in a 55 megawatt wind farm in the Gobi desert is now in place. The 25 turbines for the USD 120 million project are produced by Denmark’s Vestas.
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Tender: Oil for Development Evaluation 2016 - 2018

The evaluation concerns three Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA)’s programmes, funded by the Norad-managed Oil for Development Programme, which aim to support people in organising and influencing how natural resources are exploited in Lebanon, South Sudan and Mozambique.
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NDF supports Nordic Green Hub in Kenya

The Nordic Development Fund has approved EUR 500,000 to co-finance the establishment of a Kenya-Nordic Green Hub in Nairobi to promote Nordic green solutions. The target group is public institutions responsible for urban development in the city.
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Swedfund invests USD 10m for loans in Sub-Saharan Africa

Swedfund is investingUSD 10 million in the TLG Credit Opportunities Fund (COF). According to Zain Latif, CEO of TLG Capital, the fund’spurpose is to “plug the missing middle funding gap” for small and medium-sized companies in Sub-Saharan Africa.
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Record-large IFU investments last year

Last year IFU and IFU-managed funds signed 37 investment agreements worth a total of DKK 1.3 billion, according to its annual report. IFU had an active portfolio of more than 200 project companies. This is a new record and a 15 per cent increase compared to 2016. IFU presented a net result for its managed funds amounting to DKK 186 million.
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Changes on Finnfund’s boards

Former Minister Lenita Toivakka joins Finnfund’s Supervisory Board, while Antero Toivainen, the Head of the International Tax Affairs Unit at the Finnish Finance Ministry, becomes a member of the fund’s Board of Directors.

https://www.finnfund.fi/ajankohtaista/uutiset18/en_GB/board_appointment/

 

USD 5m Swedfund loan for Kenyan bank

The Swedish aid-funded investor Swedfund is providing a USD 5 million loan to the Kenyan bank Victoria Commercial Bank (VCB). The seven-year loan targets small and medium-sized companies. Swedfund is the first Development Finance Institution to invest in VCB. “Well-run banks play a central role in creating decent jobs [and] economic growth,” says Maria Håkansson, CEO of Swedfund, in a press statement.
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NDF funds costal societies in West Africa

The Nordic Development Fund (NDF) joins forces with the World Bank to provide funding for coastal communities in Benin and Senegal. NDF has signed a credit agreement with Benin and a grant pact with the World Bank to speed up such financing for the West African Coastal Areas Program. The agreements were signed during the World Bank’s spring meeting in Washington DC.
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NDF Nordic roadshow to find private sector partners

The Nordic Development Fund will arrange events in Stockholm, Copenhagen, Reykjavik and Helsinki in May to present climate financing opportunities for companies. NDF will highlight its two funding windows: the Nordic Climate Facility and the Environment and Energy Partnership Africa, which offer early-stage project financing climate projects.
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Norfund provides loan to Vietnamese bank

 

Norway’s Norfund and the German development finance institution DEG have signed a senior loan agreement worth USD 40 million with An Binh Commercial Joint Stock Bank in Vietnam for on-lending to enterprises, particularly those that are run by women.
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Swedfund invests in RE fund for Sub-Saharan Africa

Swedfund has invested SEK 126 million in the Evolution II Fund. The fund will invest mainly in solar power, wind power and hydropower in countries such as Zambia, Ethiopia, Nigeria and Uganda. Other financiers include the African Development Bank and European development finance institutions. The Fund aims to reach a total of SEK 2 billion in capital by the end of the year.
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Scatec, Norfund join forces in 3 new African solar projects

Scatec Solar ASA and Norfund are shortly expected to achieve financial close for three solar PV plants in South Africa totalling 258 megawatts. The investment amounts to ZAR 4.76 billion and the lion’s share of the capital is provided by commercial banks and DFIs with Standard Bank in the lead. Scatec Solar will be the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) provider for the projects and construction start is expected in the fall this year.
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IFU signs pact with Inter-American Development Bank

The Danish aid-financed investor IFU and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) aims to develop a pipeline of projects to spur Danish investments in Latin America and the Caribbean after signing a partnership agreement. The agreement is with IDB Invest, which manages more than USD 10 billion and can “pave the way for Danish trade and industry,” said Helle Bjerre, IFU Vice President. She says they have already identified two relevant projects in Bolivia and Colombia.
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NDF climate contract in Nicaragua

The Nordic Development Fund announces a tender for civil works  for climate change adaptation on a road project in Nicaragua.
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Rural electrification in Myanmar

Norfund and the World Bank’s IFC join forces to invest in micro power in Myanmar. The aim is to electrify hundreds of telecommunications towers and rural communities across the country.
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USD 7m grant for Scatec Solar plant in Mozambique

The World Bank’s private sector arm IFC has provided a debt financing package for a 40-megawatt solar plant in Mozambique to be built by Scatec Solar, a Norwegian based solar energy company. The financing package amounts to USD 76 million. Part of the package is a USD 7 million grant from the Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund.
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