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Unido’s $202.61-million grant to help govt build ‘resilient’ communities

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (Unido) will extend $202.61 million worth of grants to the Philippines for the implementation of various projects and programs in the next five years, according to the National Economic and Development Authority (Neda).

The grants, which will be extended between 2018 and 2023, will be for projects and programs in sustainable development, including the establishment of green and resilient communities and innovation-led industrialization.

Neda Undersecretary for Investment Programming Rolando G. Tungpalan told the BusinessMirror over the weekend that this is the first time that Unido created a multiyear program with the Philippines.

“[These are] all grants and this is going to be the first Unido Country Program Framework,” Tungpalan said. “There have been specific TAs [Technical Assistance] with the DTI [Department of Trade and Industry] and DENR [Department of Environment and Natural Resources] but having a country framework ensures good match with our priorities, predictability and country ownership.”

The Neda said the Country Programme for the Philippines focuses on supporting inclusive, sustainable, and innovation-led industrialization; fostering green and resilient industrial communities; and cultivating effective partnerships for inclusive and sustainable development.

Ultimately, the Country Programme for the Philippines will also seek to support the government’s efforts to revitalize manufacturing in selected sectors, and to develop the biotech industry.

Tungpalan said the Unido Country Programme Framework 2018-2023 has three major components. The component that will receive the most grants is fostering green and resilient industrial communities with $196.11 million.

The other two components—supporting inclusive, sustainable, and innovation-led industrialization and cultivating effective partnerships for inclusive and sustainable industrial development—will receive $6 million and $500,000, respectively.

Unido’s present portfolio in the Philippines covers the industry, energy, environment and post-disaster economic recovery sectors.

It’s innovations in greening industries and sustainable cities, circular economies, and sustainable consumption and production will also be continued under this program.

Socioeconomic Planning Secretary of the Philippines Ernesto M. Pernia said he recognizes the importance of Unido’s work in the country, especially in advancing industrial development.

Pernia added that Unido’s role in developing the industrial sector supports the strategies of the Philippine Development Plan 2017-2022 and recognizes the country’s long-term vision, AmBisyon Natin 2040.

“Unido’s presence in the Philippines has been instrumental in fostering an inclusive and sustainable industrial sector. We thank Unido for their tireless efforts, most especially in strengthening the value chain linkages in the domestic and global markets that benefit small and medium enterprises of Filipinos,” Pernia said.

Unido and high-level Philippine government representatives recently reaffirmed their commitment to the country’s industrialization goals.

Unido Director General Li Yong’s official visit, which coincides with the 25th anniversary of the Basic Cooperation Agreement (BCA) signed between Unido and the Philippine Government in 1993, seeks to support the country’s renewed outlook on the industry sector, and on infrastructure as a key priority.

“Today, we celebrate a sterling partnership, with 25 years of collaboration and cooperation,” said Li Yong. “The Country Programme is proof of Unido’s continuing support for the Philippines and our common desire to achieve inclusive and environmentally sustainable growth that will benefit all parts of society, with all people being given equal opportunities for prosperity.”

Unido is the specialized agency of the United Nations that promotes industrial development for poverty reduction, inclusive globalization and environmental sustainability.

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