The press release was originally published on the UNDP Brussels site.

Bonn, 16 November 2017 — The UN Development Programme, together with the Governments of Germany and Spain, and the European Commission, today launched a new programme to support countries in making progress on their commitments under the Paris Agreement, the so-called Nationally Determined Contributions, or NDCs. The newly launched NDC Support Programme will be an additional contribution by UNDP and donors to the NDC Partnership – a global alliance assisting developing countries and emerging economies to implement their NDCs and related development objectives, fast and effectively.

Building on UNDP’s expertise in supporting countries on designing and planning climate actions, the NDC Support Programme will help countries pilot gender-responsive NDC development and implementation, climate governance and mainstreaming, mitigation and adapation actions, transparency systems, climate finance and private sector engagement.

“Aligned with development priorities, NDCs [national climate plans] offer an opportunity to redesign our development approach that is smarter, more sustainable and inclusive,“ noted Achim Steiner, UNDP Administrator. “More than 90% of the NDCs are aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals, and refer to clean energy solutions, and nearly as many emphasize priorities for building resilience to climate change. Through the new NDC Support Programme and our work with the NDC Partnership, we will help countries make these important linkages and create an integrated approach.”

NDCs, which each country was required to submit ahead of the adoption of the Paris Agreement in December 2015, outline how countries aim to transition to climate-resilient, low carbon economies in an effort to keep global temperature rise well below 2 degrees and possibly to 1.5 degrees. Turning these targets into concrete actions is critical to not only for delivering on Paris, but also for ensuring that the Sustainable Development Goals are reached by 2030.

“For the Spanish Cooperation, the NDC Support Programme represents a great opportunity to assist countries with integrating development priorities in the NDC implementation, recognizing that adaptation to climate change is integral for achieving the development goals”, said Isabel García Tejerina, Spanish Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Food and Environment.

According to State Secretary Jochen Flasbarth from Germany’s Ministry of Environment, the Low Emission Capacity Building Programme, upon whose achievements the new Programme is building, has helped countries lay important foundations for climate policy long before Paris. “We will now move to deepen work on NDCs and pilot integration of a gender-lens in 10 countries at all levels, including the governance, policy, planning and institutional levels”, stated Flasbarth. “We much value our long-standing cooperation with UNDP and its experience in assisting partners in their climate policy challenges and furthering their ambitions to transition to a low carbon economy.”

Thomas Silberhorn, Parliamentary State Secretary to the German Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development noted that “through the NDC Partnership, we aim at bringing climate and developmet together. Because only if climate commitments are translated into development strategies, investment plans and sector policies, climate action can be effective. This is why UNDP – with its development mandate, large presence on the ground and expertise – has a particularly impotant role to play in these efforts. With our additional contribution, we are strengthening UNDP’s contributions to the NDC Partnership in particular in mobilizing the private sector for climate-related investments.”

Ms. Yvon Slingenberg from the Directorate General for Climate Action of the European Commission agreed: “In line with the New European Consensus on Development, the European Commission sees it as vital to implement the 2030 Agenda and the Paris Climate Change Agreement through coordinated and coherent action, and increasing cooperation with all relevant stakeholders. As the main donor of the predecessor programme, the European Commission looks forward to continue our collaboration through the new NDC Support Programme and partner countries”.

All together, the NDC Support Programme has to date mobilized more than EUR 42 M from the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB), the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the European Union, and the Government of Spain. Of this amount, the German government is providing 37.5 Million Euros to UNDP’s NDC Support Programme.

Set to run from 2017-2020, the NDC Support Programme will initially support around 25 countries but is looking to expand its support services with funding from additional donors. Countries will be building on their work under the predecessor, UNDP’s multi-donor Low Emission Capacity Building Programme, which has substantively contributed to climate change policy making for more than seven years.