Mobilizing Private Sector Investment towards SDG Financing
The study is a part of the UN Joint Program, Integrated National Financing Framework for Accelerating Achievements of SDGs (INFF4SDGs) in Bangladesh.
In December 2021 a 2-day technical consultation workshop titled “Mobilizing Private Sector Investment in the SDGs through Bankable and Investable Projects” was organized by LightCastle Partners (12 & 13 December 2021) as part of the ongoing study “Private Sectors’ Role in Designing and Identifying Bankable Projects in SDG Focus Areas” commissioned by the International Labour Organization (ILO) in Bangladesh.
The study is a part of the UN Joint Program, Integrated National Financing Framework for Accelerating Achievements of SDGs (INFF4SDGs) in Bangladesh, implemented by UNDP, UNCDF, ILO, and UN Women. ILO leads the private sector engagement component of INFF4SDGs, and LightCastle Partners is working as the primary consultant of the study. The two-day virtual event covered different aspects of bankable project designing and policy environment to facilitate private investment in SDGs.
On the first day representatives from eight private sector enterprises joined UN agencies (UNDP, ILO, UNCDF) along with LightCastle Partners. After arriving at a shared understanding of basic concepts, the group discussed the factors that contribute to bankability of an investment project for SDGs. The need to incorporate impact management in terms of social and environmental returns while defining and measuring project bankability was highlighted. Organizational credibility, sector-wise prospects and available workforce topped the checklist when designing bankable projects, while the need for further engagement and policy interventions from the government, facilitating private sector investment in the SDGs, (local and foreign investors) was stressed upon.
The second day’s (13th December 2021) discussion was with the Financial Institutions in Bangladesh. Financial returns and profitability are the first priorities when it comes to project bankability for private investors, however, the social and environmental impact are also essential for sustainable growth. Organizational credibility, early-stage planning, and political environment were considered top essentials, when investing in bankable projects. The common ground remained the need for further engagement and policy interventions from the government, facilitating private sector investment in the SDGs.