UNDP-Italy Energy Partnership

UNDP Italy-Energy Partnership


Clean energy is central to both achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on climate change. SDG 7 calls for “ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all” to be achieved by 2030. Achieving SDG 7 will catalyse action to combat climate change and accelerate progress across multiple SDGs. Without urgent action, however, the world will fall short of achieving SDG 7.

We must accelerate our efforts!

The Italian Ministry of Environment and Energy Security and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have started to work together to contribute to the achievement of SDG 7. Meeting the UN-Energy’s ambitious objective to bring clean, reliable, and affordable energy access to 500 million people by 2025 and responding to the 2021 High-level Dialogue on Energy, UNDP and the Italian Government will work together to assist countries unlock finance to scale up the diffusion of off-grid energy solutions and other effective clean and sustainable solutions. 

Partnership’s objective 


UNDP, through its country-level presence and strong relations with local institutions and actors as well as its ability to convene key stakeholders such as the private sector including through its leadership role in UN-Energy and leadership in key global funding instruments, will provide a clear pathway to address a long-standing barrier facing countries in accessing funding and finance for renewable energy diffusion.  

In the initial phase, the partnership will focus on a set of 8 countries: Algeria, Nigeria, Zambia, Kenya, Rwanda, Comoros, Mozambique, and Eswatini. Starting from these target countries the partnership will aim at fostering partnership and synergies at the regional level. 

UNDP country offices and the Rome Centre will identify level action opportunities that will be converted to country-specific investment plans for scaling up energy access and other effective clean and sustainable energy solutions. The investment plans will be backed with investment-grade feasibility assessments and project designs that will enable both public and private financing to be deployed towards bankable initiatives.  The investment plans will serve to assist each country to then attract financing and funding from an investment vehicle that will allow for blended finance (including grant, private equity, and debt financing, together with a guaranteed scheme) to be deployed alongside policy de-risking technical assistance from UNDP towards a concrete portfolio of projects on sustainable energy.   


Expected results  

  • Enabling policy and regulatory reforms to attract investment on sustainable energy solutions in the country.   

  • Technically robust project implementation plans, and feasibility assessments for an initial 8 to 12 countries, to be further scaled up if conditions are met.  

  • Crowd debt/equity finance and grant funding which in turn will leverage additional private finance to reduce access to the energy gap and boost energy transition  

  • Secure grant funding (from GEF, GCF, bilateral partners) and financing from a combination of private equity/debt/mezzanine finance from national and international sources  

  • Implementation of operational plans to scale up energy access via partnerships with DFI/IFIs and national development banks.   

Introduction on UNDP-Italy Energy Partnership