News article

Colombia- Prosperity Fund Call for Proposals 2016

The bidding round for the new prosperity fund 2016-17 was announced in December 2015. The Prosperity Fund promotes global sustainable growth. Colombia’s Bidding Round closed 19 February 2016. Results will be announced by 29 April 2016.

1. Overview

Prosperity Fund

Prosperity Fund Update: Implementers should now have received notification regarding whether their bid has been successful. If you have not received an email please contact

Successful bidders should note the revised deadline for full bids of 15 April.

The 2015 Strategic Defence and Security Review announced a £1.3bn Prosperity Fund over the next 5 years to promote the economic reform and development needed for growth in partner countries. Our priorities will include improving the business climate, competitiveness and operation of markets, energy and financial sector reform, and increasing the ability of partner countries to tackle corruption. As well as contributing to a reduction in poverty in recipient countries, we expect these reforms to create opportunities for international business including UK companies.

The role of the Fund is also set out in the UK aid strategy,Tackling Global Challenges in the National Interest .

Official Development Assistance

The Prosperity Fund will form a small but integral element of the UK’s total ODA commitment of 0.7% of GNI. It will primarily be focused on ODA eligible middle income countries, contributing to poverty reduction and complementing DFID’s work in poorer countries. In this way, the Fund will contribute towards meeting the new Sustainable Development Goals. ODA spend under the Fund will be fully consistent with OECD DAC criteria.

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office’s programme funds seek to create real, measurable outcomes in support of the FCO’s policy goals. Since 2011, the Prosperity Fund has supported the FCO’s Prosperity Priority on opening markets, ensuring access to resources, and promoting sustainable global growth, mainly in the emerging powers.

Competitive Bidding Round

The Prosperity Fund will focus on supporting large-scale, multi-year programmes linked to the FCO’s priorities. For the first year of the Fund, competitive bidding processes are being administered in a number of countries, including Colombia. Within this competitive bidding process, organisations are invited to submit bids to embassies and high commissions for individual projects that support Prosperity Fund objectives.

The Central Guidance for Implementers sets out the arrangements for the bidding process for these projects, including rules governing ODA expenditure under the Fund. Decisions on initial country allocations will be taken in early 2016.

The call for bids for the Colombia Prosperity Fund Competitive Bidding Round closed on 19 February 2016.

2. Colombia Overall Objectives

The overall objectives for the Prosperity Fund in Colombia are to:

  • Increase Colombia’s regional stability and prosperity to support sustainable peace through regional capacity building, institutional strengthening, and the generation of better infrastructure and jobs in former conflict regions.

  • Improve Colombia’s business environment to facilitate more sustainable, inclusive growth by supporting good governance, reducing corruption and creating more open, competitive markets.

  • Enable Colombia to be more competitive; harnessing the use of science, innovation and entrepreneurship; reducing labour informality; and engaging the private sector as leaders on sustainable business.

  • Support Colombia’s OECD accession, by collaborating on the implementation of rules-based, international standards.

  • Strengthen the Pacific Alliance as an integrated, open-market trading bloc and integrated financial market.

  • Build on the Embassy’s existing focus on areas including: infrastructure, anti-corruption, science & innovation, future cities and energy.

  • Support Colombia’s transition to a low carbon economy and its ambition to achieve 30% emissions reduction, dependent on international assistance.

3. Priority Areas

To achieve these objectives, the Prosperity Fund for Colombia will focus on the following three priority areas:

  • Good Governance & Competitiveness – We will support good governance, focusing on creating a better business environment, improving education, tackling corruption, driving competitiveness, promoting science and innovation as solutions to global challenges; and strengthening financial markets.

Project themes could include: Better Regulation, Improved public procurement, Open Data, Entrepreneurship, Transparency, Cyber Security, and Financial Markets.

  • Infrastructure – We will support Colombia’s infrastructure ambitions, building central and regional capability to deliver large scale infrastructure projects, sharing best practice and technical know-how on SMART cities; and helping to improve water and waste management.

Project themes could include: Public Private Partnerships, Regional capacity building, Future Cities, Water (provision & waste water management) & Waste (solid & chemical).

  • Energy – We will help improve Colombia’s energy security, support efforts to diversify its energy mix, and help accelerate Colombia’s transition to a low carbon economy.

Project themes could include: Energy Efficiency, Energy Diversification, Renewable Energy, Offshore operations and Climate Services.

4. How to bid

The Prosperity Fund looks for practical and high-impact interventions. Proposals must clearly be a catalyst for transformational change in public policy and practice in target countries and/or their behaviour in global forums. Proposals focussing purely on research, analysis, reports, seminars or workshops will not be relevant unless they lead to specific and measurable action or behavioural change.

Project bids will typically be in the region of £100,000. Bidders should take into account that all project activities must be completed and the project budget fully spent within the UK financial year 2016/17.

In assessing potential projects, the Embassy Programme Board will be keen to see:

  • Projects which could be expanded into or set the context for larger-scale multi-year Prosperity Fund programmes in subsequent years.
  • Bids which have regional relevance and/or can provide solutions to challenges shared by Colombia and one or more countries in the region, in particular Pacific Alliance countries (Colombia, Mexico, Peru and Chile).
  • Evidence of clear mechanisms to baseline, monitor and evaluate outcomes.

We encourage potential bidders to maintain close coordination with the British Embassy’s programme and policy teams to guide the drafting of applications (contact details below).

The bidding process is run in two stages: concept and full bid. Only bids approved through the concept stage will be considered for full bids. Implementers will be advised if a concept bid has been accepted and called to present a full bid. Activity Based Budgets will be required for the full bid submission, but not at the concept bid stage.

The British Embassy in Mexico is the regional coordinator for Latin America and will be processing the Prosperity Fund bids for Colombia. Bids in word format should be submitted in English by email with the title “Prosperity Fund 2016: Project title-Name of the implementer-Colombia”, to the British Embassy in Mexico City:

5. What to Include in the Bid Form

  • Overview of project
  • Strategic fit to the Colombia Prosperity Fund Objectives
  • How the project will lead to transformational change in Colombia and support the processes of economic development (outline impact and main changes that the project will impulse)
  • Rationale for project – including why the project should take place now
  • Why the UK is the partner of choice for such project? This might be due to the UK’s recognised expertise in a specific area, UK experience has lessons to share, capitalising on UK’s convening power, policies in question have close links to UK experience.
  • Support from Colombian Government - evidence that relevant Colombian Government Ministry(ies) have been consulted and are supportive of the proposal and its alignment with their own growth plans. Or if they have not, the bid should explain how the project has sufficient buy-in from the necessary stakeholders to deliver the expected outcomes
  • Communication Strategy – including stakeholders, beneficiary organizations and relevant public communications strategy actions.
  • Sustainability once the Prosperity Fund project has been completed – What factors will impact on sustainability? What actions are needed by the project to ensure sustainability occurs? What future programming could be designed to develop this impact stream/support further economic development?
  • Demonstrate that local partnership links are already established and that projects can be delivered on the ground in Colombia.

6. Indicative Timeline (subject to change)

Date Activity
12 January 2016 Open call for submission of Concept Bids
19 February 2016 Deadline for Implementers to submit Concept Bids
22 - 26 February 2016 Programme Team in Bogota review Concept Bids
17 March 2016 Final decision by Embassy Programme Board
18 March 2016 Notification to Implementers announcing results. Successful bidders invited to submit full bids
15 April 2016 Deadline for submission of full bids (including a final Activity Based Budget)
18 - 25 April 2016 Bogota Programme Team review of Final Bids
By 27 April 2016 Americas Programme Board meets to discuss Colombia’s programme bids
By 29 April 2016 Notification to Implementers announcing results and confirming approved projects
3 - 20 May 2016 Contracts and financial arrangements completed
01 June 2016 Deadline for start of projects

7. Contacts

For queries regarding the process of project submission, please contact the British Embassy in Mexico City:

Any queries on project design, content or applicability prior to submission should be sent to the British Embassy in Bogota to the relevant contact(s):

  • Angela Estrada - Fund Co-ordinator, general enquiries

Email: Tel: + 57 (1) 326 8368

  • Claudia Rodriguez - Good Governance, Economic Diplomacy

Email: Tel: +57 (1) 326 8350

  • Leidy Heredia - Competitiveness & Infrastructure (SMART cities)

Email: Tel:+57 (1) 326 8281

  • Dominic Molloy - Energy, Climate and Environment (Water, Waste)

Email: Tel: +57 (1) 326 8261

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