C40 Cities Finance Facility (CFF)

The C40 Cities Finance Facility (CFF) supports C40 cities and selected non-C40 cities in developing and emerging countries in preparing climate action infrastructure projects for climate mitigation and adaptation.

C40 Cities and GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit)
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Feb 21st, 2022


The C40 Cities Finance Facility (CFF) supports C40 cities and selected non-C40 cities in developing and emerging countries in preparing climate action infrastructure projects for climate mitigation and adaptation. Together with their partner cities, the CFF ensures technical feasibility of project proposals for finance-readiness and evaluates different capital providers and funding streams to identify the most suitable financing solution. CFF aims to strengthen the capacity of partner cities along the project preparation process and enables cities to scale-up successfully prepared projects and replicate successfully applied tools and approaches. Generated knowledge and lessons learned are shared with other interested cities through various formats with city networks, practitioners, and policy makers. The CFF is jointly implemented by GIZ and the C40 Climate Leadership Group.

The CFF is funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the UK Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and the Agence Française de Développement (AFD). To date, CFF has supported the preparation of 20 projects in 18 cities. Together, these projects are projected to reduce over 2.5 million tons of CO2 equivalent GHG emissions over 30 years and leverage an investment volume of USD 650 Million.

Assistance Criteria

Initial eligibility criteria include:

  • Project maturity – The project must have achieved a minimal level of maturity, feasibility stage, for CFF support.
  • Tangible infrastructure project – The project needs to be a concrete infrastructure project. Plans, policies or campaigns are not eligible.
  • Completeness of application – The application submitted to the CFF must be complete with all requested relevant information available to the city.
  • For C40 Cities that CFF already worked with: The submitted project needs a clear differentiation from the previous CFF project, like targeting another sector.

The city selection process is a competitive one. After the close of call for applications, the CFF evaluates the proposals to shortlist projects for advanced due-diligence missions. Advanced due-diligence includes city visits by the CFF team, intensive discussions with city officials, and a second stage application form for the CFF to get a better understanding of the proposed project. A capacity assessment and technical gap analysis is also conducted at this stage.

Overall, the application process includes an assessment of a projects’ potential to contribute towards the city’s mitigation and adaptation goals and strategic priority to the city as well as considering the impact of the project on the city’s wider social and economic development, with a focus on equity and inclusion. This takes into consideration improvements to livelihoods and employment, opportunities for women and potential economic benefits, particularly for the poorest residents of the city.

Cities need to provide evidence that the projects submitted to the CFF are featured in the relevant city development plans and that these projects have the necessary political backing for bringing them to financing and realization. City administrations need to have own resources allocated to the project preparation and a cross-departmental project management team assigned.



Support will vary considerably depending on project needs.

Application Process

The CFF city selection process started in April 2021, announced on the CFF website and newsletter. The initial deadline for submitting applications was June 6, 2021. Applications are currently in a review process.

In the first step, the application portal was open for C40 cities only. At a later stage, non C40 cities will be invited to apply.

Overview of application process:

  • Applications will need to be made online on the CFF website.

The CFF team is available to support cities through this application process throughout the duration of the application window to answer queries and to ensure that cities have sufficient information about the CFF. Please contact the CFF team at contact@c40cff.org and the C40 Regional Directors to arrange a time should you wish to avail of this support.

Typical application approval time: 4-6 months