ULAANBAATAR, MONGOLIA (16 October 2019) — The Asian Development Bank (ADB), International Finance Corporation (IFC), and the Municipality of Ulaanbaatar City recently signed a memorandum of understanding to support the implementation of the Excellence for Design and Greater Efficiencies (EDGE) green building standards and certification system for 10,000 new affordable homes to be built under the Ulaanbaatar Green Affordable Housing and Resilient Urban Renewal Sector Project.

A third of Mongolia’s population live in urban ger areas, or settlements of low- and middle-income households. These districts suffer from poor sanitation, inadequate solid waste management, and limited water supply, which pose health and environmental hazards. A heavy reliance in these ger areas on coal and biofuels for heating and energy generates large carbon dioxide emissions and worsens air pollution, especially during winter.

“About 850,000 people live in Ulaanbaatar’s ger areas and have poor access to urban services,” said ADB Principal Urban Development Specialist Mr. Arnaud Heckmann. “Our partnership with IFC will help us apply the EDGE certification system and standard in designing and constructing green, comfortable, and affordable homes for citizens living in ger areas.”

ADB, the Municipality of Ulaanbaatar, and the Development Bank of Mongolia are working to transform the ger areas in the capital city into affordable, climate-resilient, and livable eco-districts with support from the Green Climate Fund and the High-Level Technology Fund. The $570.2 million project, which includes grants and some $350 million in private sector investment, will build 10,000 energy efficient homes in 20 new environmentally friendly districts with good services, green spaces, and access to shops and jobs. Out of 10,000 homes, 1,500 will be social housing, 5,500 will be affordable housing, and the remaining 3,000 will be sold at the prevailing market price.

“At the government’s initiative and with ADB and IFC’s support, we are excited to pilot an internationally recognized format that offers a global perspective, but in a local context,” said the Executive Director of the Capital City Housing Corporation Mr. Sukhbaatar Borkhuu.

With IFC’s help, the design and development of the affordable homes will be improved by adopting EDGE standards. In partnership with the Energy Sector Management Assistance Program administered by the World Bank and the Government of Hungary, IFC has been facilitating the Ministry of Construction and Urban Development and Energy Regulatory Commission to assess the energy efficiency of buildings in Mongolia through the development of a building labeling system. IFC is also promoting green building certifications in Mongolia, including IFC’s EDGE resource efficiency certification.

“An IFC analysis sees a $3.4 trillion green buildings market through 2025 in developing countries. Against this backdrop, green construction can help a rapidly urbanizing city like Ulaanbaatar become more livable—while saving money and securing emission cuts,” said IFC’s Resident Representative in Mongolia Mr. Rufat Alimardanov.

IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and a member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. It works with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, using its capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities where they are needed most. In fiscal year 2019, it delivered more than $19 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity.

ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. In 2018, it made commitments of new loans and grants amounting to $21.6 billion. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.

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