Opportunities in development cooperation for the private sector

Private sector activities in developing countries are supported in various ways, and the funding is designed to cover the different phases of business operations. Various forms of support are available especially for companies in the energy and environment sectors.

The Finnish Business Partnership Programme, Finnpartnership, supports the start of business activities in developing countries, serving as a kind of startup grant. Companies can use it, for instance for finding a local cooperation partner, planning activities, and training their employees. A grant is typically in the range of a few tens of thousands of euros.  

DevPlat, provides information, advice, contacts and project funding related to developing markets. The Energy and Environment Partnership in Southern and East Africa (EEP Africa) is a similar multi-donor fund, but it focuses on clean energy and environmentally friendly business models.

Finnfund is a development finance company that offers equity financing and investment loans to companies that have already established their operations in a developing country. The sums vary from a few up to even tens of millions of euros. The company does not finance export but supports Finnish business operations in the target countries.

The Public Sector Investment Facility (PIF) is designed for projects that are of approximately the same size as projects supported by Finnfund.  Unlike Finnfund, PIF allows funding of public sector investments in the developing countries. To be eligible for the support, the investments must make use of Finnish expertise and technology.

A new climate fund, which was set up by Finland and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) in autumn 2017, complements the funding portfolio. It provides investment- and grant-based funding for projects combating climate change. The average size of projects supported by the IFC range between 60 and 100 million euros.

The Private sector plays an important role in development cooperation

More information on the role of the private sector in development cooperation

Financing and advice from the Team Finland network: Support for different phases of sustainable business in developing countries (PDF, 689 KB)