The Kiwa Initiative aims to strengthen the resilience of Pacific States and territories’ ecosystems, economies and communities by setting up a dedicated one-stop shop for funding projects that promote nature-based solutions (NBSs)

The Pacific Ocean is one of the regions most vulnerable to climate change yet has outstanding land and marine biodiversity that affords invaluable services to communities. Pacific States and territories have little in the way of resources to take up this challenge, even though their traditional lifestyles depend on it.

The Kiwa initiative is a multi-donor initiative which operates in 19 Pacific island States and territories and supports projects focused on nature-based solutions (NBSs). The beneficiaries are national and local authorities, regional organizations, locally-based and international non-governmental organizations and government-owned corporations.

The Initiative helps build both local and national capacity, promotes approaches that are sensitive to social vulnerability and gender inequality in project finance and foster dialogue amongst donors, regional organizations and States and territories to improve development assistance coordination on nature-based solutions for adapting to climate change. 

The Initiative was launched by France and the European Union at the 2017 One Planet Summit. It now has five funding partners: France, the European Union, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, and a budget totalling €41 million*.


* Indicative amount including EU top-up of EUR 4M, to be formalised with an addendum to the Contribution Agreement between AFD and the EU


Kiwa is a symbol of ocean protection and biodiversity. She is one of the seven guardians of the ocean in the Māori mythology.

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The Kiwa Initiative is managed by the Agence Française de Développement (AFD). 

Three projects are currently being developed, on agroecology, on ecosystem-based adaptation to climate change, as well as on the integrated management of drainage basins and the links between the preservation of biodiversity and human health. The projects, with an indicative budget of €13.3 million, are being led by the Pacific Community (SPC), the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Program (SPREP) and the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) respectively.



The governance and management of the Kiwa Initiative are organized around two key bodies: 

  • A Secretariat supervised by the AFD, tasked with supporting project assessment, monitoring and implementation, providing technical, administrative and financial management for the Initiative, and reporting back to partner donors on the contents and implementation of the Initiative's communication strategy.
  • The Initiative’s Steering Committee (SC), with representatives from five donors and three Pacific sub-regions (Polynesia, Melanesia and Micronesia), which decides on the selection of regional projects submitted to the AFD following calls for ideas, on the basis of a consensus decision.

The Initiative operates via three programmes:

  • Calls for small-scale projects (€25,000 - €400,000) to regional organizations and national authorities. Project owner: IUCN. Amount: €6 million.
  • Technical assistance for States and territories’ project development and capacity building. Project owners: the Pacific Community (SPC) and the Pacific Regional Environment Program (SPREP. Amount: €1 million for each regional organization
  • A programme for regional projects amounting to more than €1.5 million. 

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