Biodiversity Finance Accelerator - Malawi & Zambia

BioFA Impact Insights: The effects of biodiversity-positive MSMEs in Malawi and Zambia

9 December 2022 – Lilongwe & Lusaka

Globally biodiversity loss has been accelerated by human-induced changes to ecosystems and their functions. In Malawi and Zambia, biodiversity plays a crucial role in the socio-economic success especially considering its role in forestry, fisheries, and wildlife sectors. Unfortunately, mass deforestation and demand for timber products have resulted in severe losses of biodiversity in these ecosystems.

The BioFA team has published an impact report to illustrate the crucial role of biodiversity-positive enterprises in protecting and restoring natural environments. Through two surveys conducted before and after the BioFA enterprise support programme, the report reviews how participating enterprises support biodiversity conservation and restoration, insights to their economic potential, and their impact on providing quality and equal jobs for their employees.

The results found that these enterprises improve the status of biodiversity by (a) providing biodiversity-based products that improve the abundance of important insects (i.e. bees), indigenous species, and trees for reforestation; (b) providing sustainable alternative resources that reduce communities' demands for forest or other natural products; and (c) ensuring sustainable management of aquaculture and fisheries. Strikingly, 86.2% of the enterprises reported growth in 2021 with an average 90% increase in sales compared to 2020. In addition, 92.8% of the enterprises provided their employees with several of the quality job indices, including components such as equal pay, work benefits, and skills training. However, these enterprises remain highly vulnerable to climate change as their supply chains and customers face impacts that hamper business performances.

All in all, this report demonstrated the necessity for further inclusion of biodiversity-positive entrepreneurship in the international dialogue on the conservation of biodiversity as well as global and national actions to accelerate green finance for climate action. It is imperative that these biodiversity-positive enterprises are recognized as key actors in the green economy transition and continue to receive financial and non-financial support from the public and private sectors.

BioFA launches Practitioner Labs: Green Finance for Climate Adaptation & Biodiversity

10 November 2022 - Lilongwe, Malawi

The Biodiversity Finance Accelerator (BioFA), in collaboration with SEED, is hosting a Practitioner Labs: Green Finance for Climate Adaptation & Biodiversity. The Practitioner Labs seek to facilitate a hands-on process that results in targeted green finance solutions, which support the growth of MSMEs that are actively delivering biodiversity solutions and championing climate adaptation efforts across their value chains.

The Practitioner Labs gathers key stakeholders to co-create and refine tailored financial mechanisms to deliver capital for local biodiversity initiatives. There will be two workshops in Malawi, a Kick-Off Lab (17-18 November 2022) and a Scale-Up Lab (24 November 2022), with panel expert presentations, co-creation sessions and knowledge sharing, and networking.

Target participants are government representatives, regulators, financial institutions, banks, NGOs, international organisations, academia, green SMEs and private sector actors. The Practitioner Labs is a tried and tested concept for multi-stakeholder collaboration and co-creation to produce tangible outputs that drive forward existing initiatives for green finance. Other past iterations of the Practitioner Labs are SEED Practitioner Labs for Policy Prototyping & Climate Finance (South Africa, Uganda, Ghana, Indonesia, Thailand, India) and UGEFA Green Finance Academy Trainings and Innovation Lab (Uganda).

The Practitioner Labs are implemented by adelphi (Germany), Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (Malawi), UMODZI Consulting (Malawi) and the Women's Entrepreneurship Access Centre – WEAC (Zambia). The Labs are part of the International Climate Initiative (IKI) supported by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection (BMUV) of Germany.

For more information, please contact our team: Julia Rohe-Frydrych, Project Manager, here

What is the Biodiversity Finance Accelerator (BioFA)?

BioFA mobilises biodiversity investments and scales biodiversity-positive entrepreneurship, thus contributing to a sustainable use, conservation and restoration of ecosystems in Malawi and Zambia. Biodiversity-positive micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) are supported to access finance and invest into growth while financial institutions and other ecosystem players are trained in conservation finance to co-create innovative financing instruments for biodiversity MSMEs.

This project is part of the International Climate Initiative (IKI). The Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) supports this initiative on the basis of a decision adopted by the German Bundestag. Please refer to the IKI webpage for further information: 

What are biodiversity-positive enterprises?

Biodiversity-positive enterprises have developed business models which from the outset are designed to conserve and restore ecosystems and thus create positive biodiversity impacts.
These business models focus on:

  • Sustainable agriculture
  • Ecotourism
  • Reforestation
  • Invasive species management
  • Provision of resource alternatives
  • Biodiversity-based products

Please find more information on the business models of newly selected biodiversity-positive enterprises for the BioFA business acceleration programme under the News section!