Accelerating Innovation and Finance: Launching the Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance in the Philippines

October 19, 2023


Manila, October 2023: In a groundbreaking event, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the Philippines, with funding support from the Government of Canada and in partnership with the Climate Policy Initiative (CPI), officially launched the Philippines stream of the Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance. This initiative is a pivotal part of the project Accelerating Green and Climate Finance in the Philippines: Nature-based Solutions, implemented in partnership with the Department of Finance (DoF) and other key national government agencies namely: the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), Climate Change Commission (CCC), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Public-Private Partnership Center (PPPC), and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).


The Lab aims to identify, develop, and stress-test innovative financial instruments to drive financing towards renewable energy, urban infrastructure, sustainable agriculture, and land-use projects within emerging markets. For the first time, the Philippines stream is being featured in the Lab’s annual global Call for Ideas, continuing its mission to catalyze private sector investments green initiatives, specifically to mobilize funding for nature-based solutions (NbS). To date at a global level, The Lab has launched 68 instruments, with the Lab Network having invested USD1.2 billion and mobilizing USD3.5 billion for climate action in emerging economies such as the Philippines.

In line with Philippine climate goals, NbS offer significant opportunities to increase resilience to climate impacts and address biodiversity loss, while also supporting sustainable and inclusive economic growth. NbS encompasses both green-grey and natural infrastructure with specific NbS project opportunities in the country. Among key topics covered are flood risk management, domestic wastewater treatment, coastal hazards adaptation, and protection and restoration of forests, mangroves, and wetlands.

In his welcome message, UNDP Resident Representative Selva Ramachandran stated that “This collaboration with CPI will bring about innovative finance solutions and mobilize funding for gender-responsive nature-based solutions. As adaptation measures, nature-based solutions are at the very heart of increasing resilience of the country’s ecosystems, the local government units, and communities."

Embassy of Canada to the Philippines’ Head of Cooperation, John Lok, noted that “through The Lab, we look forward to the development of a number of innovative financing instruments in support of nature-based solutions in the Philippines, with the ultimate objective of generating more private sector investments in climate actions that nurture both ecosystems and communities.”

The launch also featured a panel discussion that explored innovative approaches to embedding gender-responsive NbS into strategic business decision-making and operations. Panelists from CPI, UNDP, and BDO Unibank showcased examples of how these solutions are operationalized across various industries, and emphasized the significance of integrating them into core business operations.

The Lab functions on an annual cycle, commencing with a global Call for Ideas innovative financial instruments aimed at addressing some of the most complex challenges in climate action and sustainable development. 

This year's Call for Ideas was officially launched on October 17 and will remain open for submissions until December 27. Interested groups may submit their innovative financing solutions focusing on NbS that may be connected to flood risk management, domestic wastewater treatment, coastal hazards adaptation, and protection and restoration of forests, mangroves, and wetlands.

Following the submission phase, The Lab's members will rigorously evaluate the proposals to identify the most promising concepts. This process is scheduled to conclude by January to February 2024. Once these ideas are selected, The Lab will proceed to endorse and pilot them, with the final vote scheduled for September 2024.

This year’s call comes at an opportune time against the backdrop of four major global events, including the Kunming Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF), the recently launched UNDP Nature Pledge, the adoption of the new corporate reporting standards developed by the Task Force on Nature Related Disclosures, and the CoP 28, which focuses on transforming climate finance.

The launch builds on the Philippines' commitment to innovative finance solutions and increased investments in gender-responsive nature-based solutions for a climate-resilient and sustainable future. 

For more information about the Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance Call for Ideas please visit