- Municipality of Montevideo (Uruguay) and UN-Habitat
Habitat III Conference defined the New Urban Agenda and proposed the need for increased financial mechanisms to support its implementation. At regional level, UN-Habitat, ECLAC (Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean) and MINURVI (Regional Assembly of Ministers of Urban Development and Housing) have compiled the views of regional stakeholders and prepared a regional contextualized framework for the NUA: The Regional Action Plan-RAP - for the Implementation of the NUA. One of the pillars of the RAP is the financial aspect of the Agenda. Indeed, for a Middle-Income Region, the question of funds is not about traditional Official Development Aid or traditional donors. It is about how the creation of appropriate conditions for convergence of funds (national public funds, international development banks funds and private funds) towards making the NUA a critical number of concrete projects happening at the local and city level. And this practical approach is precisely what Mercociudades and UN-Habitat are promoting with regional partners, including some regional Banks, through this Ecosystem of Funds for Sustainable Urban Development in the region.
The overall purpose of the session is to provide the opportunity to discuss key elements of this Regional Financial platform which aims to support that cities and local authorities can access financial mechanisms that make possible investment in local infrastructure and urban assets development ventures, structured under the standards promoted by the NUA. This is in a context where one of the main challenges is the availability of a critical mass of properly structured urban integrated operations that can both attract investors and at the same time materialize the principles and criteria of the NUA.
In that regard, the Ecosystem Funds aims at facilitating the development of a pool financial mechanism to fund technical support including feasibility analyses, capacity building, and planning needed to bring opportunities for local development to the level of defined projects with economic sustainability. It also creates the environment to facilitate investment on urban development projects with participation of both public and private sector in urban integrated operations which combine high social return to investment and financial sustainability.