The second phase of the Sustainable Use of Natural Resources and Energy Finance (SUNREF) Palestine project, namely SUNREF II, is aimed at continuing to support the transition of the Palestinian private sector toward a greener economy with a primary focus on green energy and more particularly energy efficiency (EE).
Proparco and the European Union are providing USD 60 million in loan and grant financing to local partner banks in Palestine, namely Bank of Palestine (BoP) and Cairo Amman Bank (CAB), for the implementation of SUNREF II that is built around a new set of objectives and operational modalities. This phase of the project comprises two new features: An increased focus on EE, and the inclusion of an Islamic lending offer for final beneficiaries.
Econoler, with its local partner ESCOM, was contracted to serve as technical assistance provider and coordination unit in the overall management and supervision of the SUNREF II Palestine program.
Description of the services :
Econoler and ESCOM are carrying out the following tasks under the mandate:
- Ensure a smooth transition between SUNREF I and SUNREF II for all involved stakeholders;
- Integrate Islamic banks into the program;
- Gradually shift the investment focus to EE;
- Coordinate the overall SUNREF II program implementation process, including disbursement of the credit line and investment premia funds, reporting to the EU, communication and cooperation between all involved parties, etc.;
- Strengthen existing capacity and transfer knowledge to implement an Environmental and Social Risk Management System in line with best practices;
- Support the SUNREF II partner banks (CAB and BoP) in producing guidelines to implement the agreed ESMS with an emphasis on RE and EE;
- Strengthen the internal capacities of SUNREF II partner banks to provide sustainable energy financing, more specifically for the revised ESMS;
- Offer support to partner banks in the E&S due diligence of potential investments and the agreed upon Environmental and Social Action Plan;
- Support SUNREF II partner banks and their clients in the identification, development, and evaluation of EE, RE, and environmental projects;
- Facilitate uptake in EE financing products at Islamic partner banks;
- Perform ex-post verifications of SUNREF II-funded projects;
- Contribute to building a robust ecosystem of project designers, developers, as well as technical and financial experts to ensure sustainable market growth beyond the expiration of SUNREF II;
- Ensure the implementation of well-targeted capacity building campaigns and networking events;
- Ensure the involvement of local experts in SUNREF activities (project identifications and evaluations, etc.);
- Further enhance the capacity of Palestinian Energy and Natural Resources Authority (PENRA), thus allowing it to become the central EE/RE agency of Palestine;
- Promote green investments in general and the SUNREF II program in particular;
- Supporting partner banks in their communication and marketing plans;
- Coordinate the SUNREF awareness-raising campaign with the visibility efforts of similar programs as well as with the marketing activities of Proparco and the EU;
- Monitor and analyze the program impacts and report to Proparco, the EU, and the Steering Committee to allow for improved EE/RE policy making in Palestine and better design of future programs and projects.
Overall, Econoler and ESCOM will facilitate the successful promotion and disbursement of the SUNREF II Palestine credit line by supporting the local partner banks and the inclusion of Islamic banks. The investment focus will be shifted to EE. Palestinian bankers will be further trained to identify and assess potentially feasible EE investment projects. Project experts will work with the partner banks to develop and implement the program communications and marketing strategy with a focus on enhancing the EE market in the country. Econoler and ESCOM will also play the role of key coordination unit for SUNREF II, ensuring smooth communication and data flow between all involved parties (the EU, Proparco, partner banks, PENRA).