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Responsible Business Fund in Myanmar

FCG Sweden is since August 2017 managing the Danida-financed Responsible Business Fund (RBF) in Myanmar.

The Embassy of Denmark has established the DKK 80 million RBF to “increase the competitiveness and responsible behaviour of Myanmar enterprises” by providing partial grants to SMEs for the implementation of projects in the seven eligible areas: Energy Efficiency, Water use Efficiency, Waste treatment and Recycling; Occupational Safety & Health (OSH); Food Safety; Managerial & Supervisory Skills; and  Practical & Technical Skills.

In addition to the direct benefits of the financed SME investments, the aim is to demonstrate to SMEs new innovative and profitable interventions that are not yet common in Myanmar and in which enterprises at this point of time would normally not invest in without support.

Day-to-day management of the RBF is the responsibility of the RBF Management Unit, led by Team Leader Amarnath Reddy (see picture). This includes marketing the fund, reaching out to the targeted SMEs; launching calls for proposals; appraising, selecting and contracting grantees; as well as monitoring implementation, liaising with service providers and organizing capacity building activities.

In addition to establishing the fund administration, marketing and setting up operations, the RBF Management Unit has during the autumn been actively engaged in organising a pilot call for proposals to kick-start the programme. 34 SMEs submitted concept notes, of which 22 were shortlisted to present full proposals. 18 SMEs were finally selected for financing, and approved by the RBF Board, constituted by representatives from the Ministry of Industry, the Myanmar private sector and the Embassy of Denmark.