The first, and possibly most momentous decision to be adopted on the final day of the tenth Green Climate Fund (GCF) Board meeting (Songdo, 9 July 2015) was the launch of a five year pilot phase on enhanced direct access (EDA Pilot). It was the crowning moment in the (sometimes arduous) three-year process that began with the inclusion of a mandate in the GCF Governing Instrument for the GCF Board to consider additional modalities that further enhance direct access, including through funding entities with a view to enhancing country ownership of projects and programmes.
The EDA Pilot will initially aim to provide up to US$ 200 million for at least ten pilots, including at least four pilots to be implemented in Small Island Developing States, the least developed countries and African States. It will include devolved decision-making to regional, national, and subnational entities and stronger local multi-stakeholder engagement. The decision-making on the specific projects and programmes to be funded will be made at the national or subnational level, and such direct access is a means to increase the level of country ownership over those projects and programmes.
It also requires a National Oversight and Steering Function for country pilots to be overseen and strategically guided at the national level, and envisages engaging local stakeholders through local intermediation. These key requirements on country pilots correspond precisely with the conclusions on what the EDA Pilot should focus on, drawn in the most recent OCP/ecbi publications on the matter:
- "Consolidation and devolution of national climate finance", and
- "Engaging Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises in developing countries"
(both available on ecbi website)