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Investing in Green Infrastructure for African Cities

Africa is becoming more urbanised, with younger populations increasingly moving from rural areas to cities to find work. In September 2020, the World Bank and the European Investment Bank (EIB) launched the City Climate Finance Gap Fund, which aims to support the green and climate-resilient development of cities in low- and middle-income countries. Through donor support, technical assistance, and targeted finance of at least $122m, the fund plans to unlock an estimated $5bn to help cities transform climate ambitions into finance-ready projects. The first round of technical assistance grants for nine cities were approved in early April, amounting to $1.8m in total. The selected African cities include Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo; Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; and Fez, Morocco. All of the three African pilot cities are particularly vulnerable to climate change. In the first round of funding, the cities will build their greenhouse gas inventory scenarios and develop a pipeline of green urban infrastructure investments. The team behind the Gap Fund hopes these city pilots will provide a blueprint on how to lower greenhouse gas emissions in cities and help them face climate change.