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August 21, 2023

PIDG to extend its partnership with the World Bank’s Water Global Practice to help accelerate the pace of investment in the Water Sector across Africa and Asia

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The Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG) is pleased to announce that it has extended its partnership with the Global Water Security & Sanitation Partnership (GWSP), a multi-donor trust fund housed within the World Bank’s Water Global Practice.

PIDG Technical Assistance (TA) will provide a USD 2 million grant to support crucial upstream TA activities that will be implemented in the next 24 months. PIDG’s additional funding will support the scale-up needed to make substantive progress on closing the infrastructure financing gap in water and sanitation, by facilitating private investment into this important sector through capacity building and targeted technical assistance.

Close to 640 million people still lack access to safe drinking water, and 2.4 billion to sanitation. It is estimated that approximately USD 1.7 trillion in additional investment in water and sanitation alone would be needed through 2030 to meet the SDG 6 targets. PIDG and Water Global Practice recognise that much more needs to be done to assist public water utilities and water resources management organisations in tapping into commercial finance, and to support private sector participation in water service delivery in emerging and developing countries across Asia and Africa.

To date PIDG’s support has resulted in an improved and accessible training programme for water utilities to drive creditworthiness and targeted technical assistance being deployed upstream in PIDG’s target markets. The Water Utility Creditworthiness course launched in April 2023 and is continuing to be rolled out with in person workshops with local utilities. PIDG’s support of upstream analytical and advisory work has facilitated strengthening the framework for private sector investment in water service delivery in a number of markets Asia and Africa.

The extension of the Partnership will focus on providing transaction support to address the foundational issues of financial and technical efficiency of governance and regulatory systems, while facilitating deployment of commercial finance through leveraging and blending opportunities. PIDG TA funding will support analytical and advisory work in selected PIDG mandated countries by identifying and addressing knowledge gaps, advising and reforming the policy environment, and structuring potential transactions for water service providers to enhance their success in tapping into private sector participation and commercial finance.

Emilio Cattaneo, Head of Technical Assistance at PIDG said:

We are proud to be able to provide continued support to a key World Bank initiative in the water sector. Following a very productive engagement over the last two years, resulting in valuable outputs which have supported the broader work of PIDG, we are excited to embark on this second phase of the Strategic Partnership. Under the new PIDG strategy 2023 – 2030, water continues to be one of PIDG’s priority sectors of focus, and from our past experiences in water projects, we recognise that capacity building upstream at government, municipal and utility level is essential to create viable opportunities for private sector investment. We believe there is strong alignment between PIDG’s mandate of developing infrastructure assets in frontier markets, and the World Bank Global Water Practice’s focus on ensuring the public sector in target countries has access to the required level of know-how and expertise.
Emilio Cattaneo
Head of Technical Assistance at PIDG

Sarah Nedolast, GWSP’s Program Manager said: “This Partnership will benefit countries seeking to mobilize financing for the water sector, arguably one of the largest challenges facing the sector. The Partnership will enable countries to tap into the expertise of PIDG and benefit from technical and capacity building provided by GWSP. Combining efforts will help countries narrow capacity and financing gaps needed to accelerate progress towards meeting SDG 6 targets.”

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