UK Government – Reducing plastics pollution in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia

The Sustainable Manufacturing and Environmental Pollution (SMEP) Programme, funded by the United Kingdom’s Foreign Commonwealth Development Office (FCDO) in partnership with the United Nations Conference for Trade and Development (UNCTAD), supports innovative solutions that prevent pollution from manufacturing being released into the environment. It includes a focus on generating evidence and practical solutions to address the problem of plastic ocean pollution. The programme has an investment fund of up to £20 million to be disbursed over a 5 year period (2019-2024) with up to £5 million of this potentially available for this Plastics Call.

The SMEP Plastics Fund has a total budget of up to £5 million over 3 years. We are seeking calls for concepts for research and development projects that have the potential to bring new solutions into the plastics value chain upstream of the end-of-life solutions. Ideally, these should be well-positioned to be taken up at scale by industry in the region.

Priority will be given to SMEP target countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia and Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan although applications from other ODA countries can also be considered. Providers may elect to work in more than one country in a (sub-)region.

What the fund will achieve :

This Plastics Fund under SMEP aims to improve pollution levels, human health, and the environment through achieving a reduction in plastic pollution in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. The Fund aims to advance solutions to reduce the incidence of one-way, disposable plastic articles, which are poorly conceived and therefore prone to ending up as litter.


Deadline : 11:59pm on 2 July 2021.

Further information

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