EIF and UNDP to strengthen cooperation for sustainable finance

October 21, 2020


Online (New York/Luxembourg)  The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the European Investment Fund (EIF) are joining forces to develop joint initiatives for sustainable finance and the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

In an online signature ceremony, UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner, and the Chief Executive of the European Investment Fund (EIF), Alain Godard, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), which re-affirms the organisations’ commitment to address the socio-economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, respond to climate change, and tackle inequalities. EIF and UNDP have also agreed to explore cooperation opportunities in fields of common interest: Sustainable Development Goals, risk management, socio-economic and environmental impact assessments, as well as design and delivery of financial instruments and asset management services to support inclusive, private sector-led, growth.

UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner said: “We are going through challenging times that call for cooperation on all levels across the globe. When we join forces, we can build forward better, towards a greener, more inclusive and resilient future. This renewed Memorandum with European Investment Fund will deepen our joint efforts to address the complex impacts of the pandemic.”

Chief Executive of the European Investment Fund (EIF) Alain Godard said: “As the world is weathering the crisis, our leadership is needed more than ever. Smart partnerships are instrumental for EIF to deliver on the recovery and to further maximize its development impact. I am delighted to formalize today this timely and much needed partnership with UNDP which can help us deliver on these strategic objectives.”

This MoU falls into the wider UNDP partnership with EIB Group (composed of the European Investment Bank and the European Investment Fund), which is essential to help countries to access and leverage COVID-19 response financing and better prevent future crises. Both organizations aim to jointly address global challenges and share knowledge with each other in areas such as migration, climate change, and crisis response.

Building on the European Investment Bank’s – UNDP Indicative Joint Action Plan and capitalizing on successful initial institutional collaboration, EIF would leverage UNDP’s socio-economic assessments and seek support from UNDP in the context of embedding the SDGs into the deployment of financial instruments. At the same time, UNDP seeks to benefit from EIF’s its unique experience in the context of structuring, deploying, and managing financial instruments and the related risks.


UNDP works in about 170 countries and territories, helping to achieve the eradication of poverty, and the reduction of inequalities and exclusion. Through its six offices in the Western Balkans, UNDP analyses development challenges for each country, finding avenues for SDG acceleration, and implementing innovative development interventions with a clear vision for leaving no one behind.

The European Investment Fund (EIF) is part of the European Investment Bank group. Its central mission is to support Europe's micro, small and medium-sized businesses by helping them to access finance. EIF designs and develops both venture and growth capital, guarantees and microfinance instruments which specifically target this market segment. In this role, EIF fosters EU objectives in support of innovation, research and development, entrepreneurship, growth and employment.