Scaling Up Sustainable Infrastructure in Mexico with Banobras and IDB

Scaling Up Sustainable Infrastructure in Mexico with Banobras and IDB

The current level of infrastructure investment in Mexico represents the lowest in Latin America, barely 1.6% of GDP, far less than the 5% recommended by the World Bank to close the investment gap in local infrastructure. Moreover, the development of sustainable infrastructure is particularly critical for Mexico, since – according to the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery – more than 40% of its territory and nearly a third of its population are exposed to natural disasters, resulting in considerable impacts on infrastructure systems.

Since 2019, EMSD and the Mexican development bank Banobras have deepened their collaboration to drive the implementation of the sustainable infrastructure agenda forward. Banobras is the entity in charge of managing the Proyectos México platform, an online platform of the government that includes the main infrastructure and energy projects carried out by different agencies and entities of the federal public sector, as well as projects at the state level. The main objective of this platform is to provide investors, banks, national and foreign developers with information on Mexican infrastructure projects at different stages: pre-investment, bidding, construction and operation.

Banobras has identified sustainability as a key aspect to attract investor interest, including regarding the alignment of projects with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). With the support of the EMSD and the Inter-American Development Bank Group (IDB), Banobras is currently applying the IDB Sustainable Infrastructure Framework to a wide range of projects of the Proyectos México platform. The IDB´s methodological framework gives guidance to the public and private sectors by providing key indicators covering the economic and financial as well as social, environmental and institutional sustainability along the infrastructure lifecycle. For each project, a sustainability data sheet will be provided (see example here).

The aim of this collaboration with Banobras and the IDB is to evaluate over 150 projects of the Proyectos México platform in order to integrate the methodology as part of the evaluation process of the upcoming projects that will be featured on the platform. With this cooperation, EMSD and GIZ are contributing to strengthen Banobras’ capacities to implement and scale sustainable infrastructure solutions. Lessons learned have been summarized in this report, produced in cooperation with Banobras and the IDB.

Gender-Responsive Infrastructure Training with Banobras

Contrary to the flawed yet widespread perception that infrastructure is gender-neutral, women and girls still face a lack of access to basic infrastructure services such as clean water, sanitation or safe public transport. The absence of a gender-sensitive view on infrastructure undermines their ability to integrate into and benefit from public life in all its social, economic and political aspects. To create truly inclusive infrastructure systems, the topic must be addressed by the different actors along the project lifecycle. National Development Banks play a major role in this process and their promotion of a strong linkage between gender and infrastructure is crucial for its practical realization.

As part of the collaboration between EMSD and Banobras in Mexico on integrating the IDB Sustainable Infrastructure Framework in the projects uploaded to the Proyectos México platform, it was found that more could be done to adequately address gender and, in particular, to reflect the needs of women. The Proyectos México team identified the need to strengthen their capacities in applying practical steps of gender-responsive infrastructure.

To integrate this strategic enforcement into the projects and to contribute to Banobras’ gender policy, EMSD and Banobras initiated a training on gender-responsive infrastructure. The workshop – designed in cooperation with the consultancy Sinfranova – deepened the knowledge on tools and strategies of about 20 participants from Banobras and Proyectos México. In five sessions, participants discussed case studies of Mexican infrastructure projects and shared their practical insights on the topic. The training was very well received by all participants and furthered the interest and commitment among the different units of Banobras.

The training also built on the progress and results of the Gender-Responsive Infrastructure work stream of the Solutions Lab.

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Should you be interested in learning more about our work, please reach out to:

Mr. John Hauert – Lead, Sustainable Infrastructure

Mr. Mario Bernal – Project Coordinator Mexico