Author/s:

Hossain, M.

Publisher:

NDA Secretariat, Economic Relations Division (ERD), Ministry of Finance, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH

Year of Publication:

2018

With the adoption of Copenhagen Accord in 2009 at 15th COP to UNFCCC and decisions taken at the 16th COP to the UNFCCC in Cancun in 2010, the international community embarked on the development of a new funding framework, stating that a scaled up, new and additional, predictable and adequate funding is envisaged. Accordingly, at UNFCCC COP-17, in Durban, South Africa in December 2011, a new channel to disburse these resources, the Green Climate Fund (GCF) was formally established. GCF has adopted “a goal of mobilizing jointly USD100 billion per year by 2020 to address the needs of developing countries” and has mobilized USD10.3 billion as pledges and has raised USD 10.1 billion out of that till June, 2017. In GCF’s financing architecture, each country has its own in-country representative, called National Designated Authority (NDA). NDA acts mainly as the country interface between the recipient and the GCF. NDA provides strategic oversight aligned to national priorities, convenes national stakeholders, nominates appropriate national entities to act as intermediaries of GCF, decides the projects or program that would go to GCF for funding and leads country’s readiness in accessing GCF’s resources. In  performing all these roles NDA is expected to possess adequate knowledge about national plans, strategies and priorities, capacity to facilitate and coordinate country coordination mechanisms and multi-stakeholder engagement for country consultations, familiarity with climate change mitigation and adaptation activities, international climate finance flows and country’s need. In November 2014, Government of Bangladesh nominated its Economic Relations Division (ERD) of Ministry of Finance as Bangladesh’s NDA to GCF.

This paper tries to analyze ERD’s capacity to perform its role as NDA of Bangladesh for GCF. The objective was translated into two research questions as ‘what is the role of ERD in accessing GCF’ and ‘what the capacities ERD needs to perform that role’. A combination of quantitative and qualitative method has been used in this study to find out the answers. Both primary and secondary sources of data have been gathered. Specifically the study is based on semi structured interviews and questionnaire survey methods.

The study finds that stakeholders have a high expectation on ERD as NDA to play an important coordinator’s or catalytic role among the stakeholders by taking everybody on board and to make everybody knowledgeable about the opportunities and procedures of GCF. They also expect ERD to act as a facilitator rather than a regulator in the way of accessing GCF. ERD’s performance so far has built a confidence among the stakeholders on ERD’s capacity to fulfill their demands. Although ERD has made a reasonably good start, there are couple of challenges like making the country system GCF compliant and enhancing institutional capacity and engagements that ERD as NDA needs to overcome. The study finds that capacities like knowledge on national strategies, plans and priorities, familiarity with CC activities and country’s needs, ability to monitor and evaluate project proposals against GCF and country criteria, over viewing capacity of international climate finance flows in the country and all the sources of international climate finance, ability to contribute and drive national strategies and plans, ability to run own and stakeholders’ readiness, ability to understand and internalize GCF’s  procedures and decisions and ability to converting NDA into a service centre or helping body are essential in overcoming the challenges. ERD as the NDA also needs to develop an accessible and open governance mechanism and to act as ‘a one stop service center’ for issuing NOL in a timely and transparent manner.

The study finds ERD at its NDA Secretariat has an acute human resource shortage. As NDA secretariat has no permanent setup till today, there is a high risk of institutional memory loss. NDA Secretariat needs permanent setup immediately with engaging more people at some technical posts as well. NDA also needs to show strong leadership or capacity to initiate or push for reforms like, in making the present planning process GCF aligned or making country’s fiduciary system GCF compliant.

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