A new water infrastructure facility to consolidate the gains of CRIDF after the UK aid-supported programme has ended was recently discussed at a meeting in Johannesburg. The facility will target climate resilient infrastructure projects and align its priorities with funds already operating within Southern Africa.
The Water Resources Technical Committee (WRTC) Working Group meeting provided an opportunity to endorse key documents, finalise the facility’s business case and approve an implementation plan and financial strategy. It also helped participants reflect on CRIDF progress during the past few months and take stock of the facility’s evolving priorities.
The facility is expected to be hosted by an existing institution within the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and will focus on the early stage development of projects, handing some of these over to other entities that fall under the umbrella of the SADC Regional Development Fund (RDF).
Although the facility will build on the impressive work of CRIDF, developing bankable and sustainable water projects, it will also manage a wider range of projects. Instead, the facility will not be limited to projects of a transboundary nature and will also focus on projects within countries, including the island states of the SADC, which are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.
Benefiting from the significant number of partnerships that CRIDF has forged and maintained, the facility will also build additional collaborations, creating synergies and alignments with other funds that operate within the Southern Africa region.
Financing for the facility is expected to come from a new funding approach that integrates a range of funders and instruments – a strategy that will evolve as the facility develops. A detailed implementation roadmap, covering the next three and a half years, will outline key milestones, meetings and outputs, including operational plans and mechanisms, as well as the appointment of board members. The WRTC Working Group will over the coming months analyse the content, usability and usefulness of the roadmap, offering critical feedback to inform its ongoing development.
As the facility continues to take shape additional information will be posted to the CRIDF website.