Global infrastructure needs to 2030 are estimated to be $57 trillion. For both public sector and private sector investors in the developing markets there has been a lack of well-prepared projects to fulfil these needs. This has led to a widening infrastructure gap between what is required and what is delivered.
Practical applications are needed to narrow the gap. Following early stage development by the Asian Development Bank, a new online Cloud based project development tool for project sponsors – the International System for Infrastructure Support – is being launched with the support of major global development banks and key private sector entities to attract and increase investment into infrastructure.
The International Infrastructure Support System (IISS), implemented by the Geneva based non-profit foundation, the Sustainable Infrastructure Foundation (SIF), is an online, secure, scaleable, multi-user preparation platform/service developed with the support of Capgemini. IISS is accessible to public and private sector ensuring a high quality, consistent and systematic approach to early stage project development.
Following successful first stage testing, including analysis and support from PwC, pilot projects are now being undertaken to ensure the robustness of the system in Latin America, Africa, Central Europe and Asia. These are being undertaken by SIF together with the appropriate regional development banks and with the assistance of the World Economic Forum (WEF).
SIF is to showcase IISS in the context of holding its second annual meeting on November 4th, 2014 at the headquarters of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) in London. The majority of other partners of SIF (African Development Bank, Asian Development Bank, The Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES), Development Bank of Southern Africa, EBRD, Inter-American Development Bank, World Bank Group, WEF, Global Green Growth Institute, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and leading private sector constituents) are also convening in London.
Matthew Jordan-Tank, Head of Infrastructure Policy at the EBRD said: “We are delighted to be welcoming SIF to London together with other supporters to underpin and strengthen our support for this promising new cloud-based project facilitation system. These are the types of innovations that will drive an uplift in infrastructure investment over the medium term and beyond."
Laurence Carter, Senior Director for PPPs in the World Bank Group, said: “The International Infrastructure Support System is an important initiative that has the potential to help increase the supply of commercially viable, sustainable infrastructure investments in emerging markets. With the support of the Public-Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility (PPIAF – a World Bank multi-donor trust fund), we look forward to collaborating with other partners on this initiative to help bring the public and private sectors together to unlock a pipeline of viable and bankable public-private partnership projects.”
Mamady Souare, Division Manager of the AfDB’s NEPAD and Regional Infrastructure Division (ONRI.1), said: “Through a grant from the KOAFEC Trust Fund, the AfDB lends support to The Sustainable Infrastructure Foundation’s (SIF) stewardship role in expanding the use of IISS through the AfDB’s portal. The global IISS platform clearly complements the regional AU/NEPAD Virtual PIDA Information Centre (VPic)’s multimedia web-portal. The AfDB’s participation in both platforms will facilitate the synergies and the link between the two platforms and thereby help close the infrastructure financing gap in Africa.”
Gastón Astesiano, Senior Operations Advisor to the Vice President for Countries IADB, said: “We are very glad to be part of the creation of the International Infrastructure Support System, which will contribute to increase the number of adequately structured infrastructure projects through the support and dissemination of best practices for project preparation. IISS is complementary of IADB instruments to support early stage infrastructure project preparation through InfraFund and FOMIN. IISS is the fruit of the sincere collaboration among Development Institutions and the Private Sector, which will help to bridge the infrastructure gap through the support to the generation of a robust pipeline of infrastructure projects.”
Neside Tas Anvaripour, Director of Africa50, said: "At Africa50, we welcome the creation of the International Infrastructure Support System as an innovative platform that helps governments, project preparation facilities and developers collaborate more efficiently. It will also help avoiding duplication and increases knowledge and experience sharing across regions and different type of players. I wish a very good success to IISS and I look very much forward to using it”.
Julia Prescot, President, SIF, and Chief Strategy Officer, Meridiam, said: “A number of infrastructure projects do not progress beyond the conceptual stage even though they benefit from strong public support and could potentially be funded through private savings from pension funds, insurance companies, and other private investors. By the use of new technologies through the International Infrastructure Support System, collaborative work, and bringing together the required expertise, the Sustainable Infrastructure Foundation will demonstrate how project pipelines with a focus on sustainability can be generated as well as creating attractive investment opportunities.”
Christophe Dossarps, CEO, SIF said: “Consistency and consensus are key for infrastructure investments from their concept and preparation to their investment by private investors. IISS is a 21st century solution to provide such framework for infrastructure project preparation and ultimately to support sustainable infrastructure delivery.”
Further description of the system
Uniquely, SIF has brought together public institutions with private sector investors and globally recognized consultants to provide a high quality knowledge based ‘expert’ system, utilizing data input, benchmarking and examples of best practice to ensure that projects are developed consistently, comprehensively and with due regard to environmental and social requirements across the global development markets. Using globally recognized expert guidance, the international system offers templates for public sector project sponsors to complete, improving not only the quality and transparency of project preparation but also the ultimate interface with financiers and funders enabling more resilient and sustainable projects and a better range of public, PPP and private funding options.
Short explanatory notes on each of the entities mentioned.
World Bank Group: http://www.worldbank.org/
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SUSTAINABLE INFRASTRUCTURE FOUNDATION
 “Infrastructure productivity: How to save $1 trillion a year”, McKinsey Global Institute, January 2013.