Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions

Additional information can be found in the Frequently Asked Questions below. The MCDF Secretariat can be contacted at

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Part 1: What is the MCDF?

1. What is the MCDF?

The Multilateral Cooperation Center for Development Finance (MCDF) is a multilateral initiative to increase high-quality infrastructure and connectivity investments in developing countries in compliance with International Financial Institution (IFI) standards through partnerships. The MCDF is designed to reinforce the numerous existing global, regional, and sectoral initiatives established in response to the need for more connectivity infrastructure in the world. The MCDF is also intended to support implementation of the G20 Quality Infrastructure Principles, the UN Agenda 2030 and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), as well as the Paris Climate Agreement.

2. How is the MCDF structured?

The MCDF is comprised of:

  1. An MCDF Collaboration Platform to promote communication and collaboration among the IFIs and other development partners about their plans and activities relating to infrastructure and connectivity investment. The Collaboration Platform will promote information sharing and exchange of best practices and will benefit from a suite of collaborative tools and data.
  2. An MCDF Finance Facility supported by grants from contributors to support activities of the MCDF. Activities funded by the Finance Facility will be carried out by IFIs that are accredited as Implementing Partners by the MCDF.
  3. A Secretariat to support the day-to-day operations of the MCDF.
  4. An Administrator to provide other, mainly financial, services to the MCDF, including the establishment and hosting of the MCDF Secretariat and establishing and managing an MCDF Account to hold the funds contributed to the MCDF Finance Facility.
3. Who is participating in the MCDF?

IFIs and Implementing Partners: Interested IFIs will be Implementing Partners of the MCDF if they have been accredited as a technical partner of the Global Infrastructure Facility or are accredited in accordance with a process and criteria to be approved by the Governing Committee in concurrence with the Administrator.

Contributors of Finance Facility: Any sovereign member of an accredited IFI Implementing Partner can contribute to the Finance Facility. Any other entity that shares the mission and the approach of the MCDF, including private sector entities, can also contribute, subject to approval by the Governing Committee of the Finance Facility and the Administrator.

Beneficiary Countries: MCDF-financed activities will provide financing for activities that promote the economic development and welfare of low- and middle-income countries. Financing can also be carried out for the benefit of countries that have an active country program with an IFI Implementing Partner.

New Partners financial institutions as well as investors, state-owned or private, that are not currently generally applying accredited IFI standards, and are based in recipient countries of the IFI Implementing Partners.

4. What types of activities will the MCDF finance?

The following categories of activities will be financed to support high-quality infrastructure and connectivity investments:

  1. information sharing activities.
  2. capacity building activities to enhance relevant know-how, institutional capacity, and regulatory reform of developing countries and their development partners in areas including, but not limited to:
    1. anti-corruption.
    2. debt sustainability.
    3. environmental and social frameworks.
    4. financial and operational performance improvements.
    5. gender equality.
    6. inclusion.
    7. investment climate.
    8. investment cycle capacity building that enhances the integration of standards.
    9. procurement.
    10. risk management, including risks related to environment and greenhouse gas emissions.
    11. trade facilitation.
  3. project preparation activities including, but not limited to:
    1. pre-feasibility and feasibility activities and studies.
    2. debt sustainability assessments.
    3. environmental and social assessments.
5. How does MCDF add value to existing infrastructure initiatives?

Although there are other initiatives promoting high quality infrastructure, MCDF is unique in its focus on connectivity infrastructure and on raising the standards of New Partners. It is also unique in providing a ‘one stop shop’ service of information sharing, capacity building and project preparation. We are open to partnerships with other infrastructure initiatives to minimize duplication and maximize synergies.

6. How is MCDF multilateral?

MCDF is as a multilateral initiative, consisting of 11 IFI members on its Coordination Committee, seven donor countries in the Governing Committee, where the four voting members each have one vote and the Chair of the Governing Committee rotates annually.

7. How is it ensured that infrastructure projects supported by MCDF are fully aligned with international standards?

Alignment with the highest international standards for infrastructure is hard-wired into MCDF’s operating procedures. MCDF’s Finance Facility can only fund projects through accredited IFI Implementing Partners, the projects must follow their standards, and only those IFIs that meet the highest international standards can be accredited as Implementing Partners. To be accredited, an IFI must either have already been accredited by the Global Infrastructure Facility or have been accredited by MCDF’s own accreditation framework.

8. How will the MCDF contribute to the global recovery from the impacts of COVID-19?

MCDF participants have agreed that the MCDF can make a significant contribution to post-COVID-19 pandemic recovery. IFI Implementing Partners have already begun to consider how to maximize the tools offered by the MCDF in their COVID-19 recovery investments, and they are expected to develop these ideas into proposals for MCDF funding.

9. How does a country/organization contribute to the MCDF Finance Facility?

Any country that is a member of an accredited IFI Implementing Partner may contribute grant resources to the MCDF Finance Facility. Other entities, including the private sector, interested in contributing to the MCDF should approach the Secretariat to discuss its contribution. New contributors are subject to approval by the Governing Committee, in concurrence with the Administrator.

Part 2: How to work with MCDF

10. What is the definition of infrastructure connectivity in the MCDF context?

Infrastructure connectivity refers to the linkage of communities, economies and nations through transport, communications, energy, and water networks across countries.

11. Can a project improve cross-border connectivity even though it is located only in one country?

Many infrastructure projects are planned and developed to improve cross-country connectivity, although they may be in one country only. Airports, seaports, railway stations, transmission lines, logistics centers for international shipment, and telecommunication facilities are just a few typical examples to mention.

12. Should proposals seeking funding from the MCDF require prior Implementing Partner approvals? If so, what level of approval is required?

Each Implementing Partner has its own internal processes and procedures to manage its project pipeline that may need external funding support. Some Implementing Partners need to go through internal approval procedures before submitting proposals for external funding. Others may only issue an initial clearance before trying to secure external funding. The approval authority also varies with each Implementing Partner.

The MCDF will process the proposals that are officially submitted by Implementing Partners. However, the actual transfer of grant financing will require evidence of formal internal approvals.

13. Can an Implementing Partner apply for MCDF financing jointly with another Implementing Partner?

Yes. But in the case of project preparation, the MCDF will give priority to proposals that involve a partnership with a New Partner. Proposals for project preparation without the involvement of a New Partner may be considered, but only when funds from other technical assistance facilities are not available.

14. How does the MCDF define a partnership between Implementing Partners and New Partners? Who takes the initiative, the Implementing Partner or the New Partner?

MCDF gives priority to proposals that involve a partnership between an Implementing Partner and a New Partner. The partnership may include a joint project preparation team, most likely led by the Implementing Partner, and may take the form of co-financing, either joint or parallel. The partnership may be initiated by the Implementing Partner, or by the New Partner.

15. If a New Partner enters into a partnership with an Implementing Partner on a joint project preparation financed by the MCDF, is the New Partner required to make a commitment to finance the investment project at a later stage?

No. Neither the New Partner nor the Implementing Partner is deemed to have made, or is required to make, a formal commitment to finance the investment project after the use of funds from the MCDF.

16. How does MCDF envision its support for private sector projects? Does MCDF provide financial support for private sector projects at the pre-concept stage?

In principle, projects supported by the private sector operation windows of Implementing Partners are eligible for MCDF support. The means and modality for support of a particular private sector project would need to be assessed on a project-by-project basis. The MCDF would need to ensure that its support does not create any distortions on the market or conflicts of interest.

17. What’s the maximum duration of project preparation support?

The time needed for project preparation will depend on the technical, engineering, and other due diligence requirements. MCDF does not have a pre-set maximum duration for the preparation of any investment project. In general, the project preparation support will need to be kept consistent with the availability of MCDF funding resources.