The government on Wednesday approved the second phase of “City Investments to Innovate, Integrate and Sustain — CITIIS 2.0, following its decision to extend the smart cities programme.
The programme seeks to support projects promoting a circular economy with focus on integrated urban management
Approved by the Union cabinet at a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the programme will be implemented over a four-year period — from 2023 to 2027 — for 18 additional smart cities, with a budget of over Rs 1,700 crore.
The initiative includes the development of waste management facilities, climate change observatories, and the enhancement of national institutions for knowledge-sharing purposes.
CITIIS 2.0 is a collaborative effort between the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA), the French Development Agency (AFD), Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW), the European Union (EU), and the National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA).
It aims to receive a loan of Rs 1,760 crore (EUR 200 million) from AFD and KfW (EUR 100 million each) with a technical assistance grant of Rs 106 crore (EUR 12 million) from the EU, according to reports.
The programme has three components.
Cities interested in participating must submit applications to the government, which will then be evaluated by a panel for subsequent approvals, according to officials.
Under this program, up to 18 smart cities will receive both financial and technical assistance to develop circular economy projects that focus on integrated waste management, as well as climate resilience, adaptation, and mitigation, through a competitive selection process.
Further, all states and Union Territories now have the opportunity to receive support upon request.
This support will encompass establishing or enhancing state climate centres, creating state and city-level climate data observatories, facilitating climate-data-driven planning, and enhancing the skills and capabilities of municipal officials.
To effectively execute these objectives, the Program Management Unit (PMU) at NIUA will take charge of coordinating the provision of technical and strategic assistance to state governments.
Lastly, the program will focus on interventions at three levels – Centre, State, and City — to reinforce climate governance in urban areas throughout the country.
These interventions will include strengthening institutions, disseminating knowledge, forging partnerships, building capacity, and conducting research and development to facilitate the widespread implementation of initiatives across all states and cities.
The second phase aims to build on the success of its 2018 predecessor by scaling up the learnings.
The first part of the program has covered 12 cities, providing urban practitioners with more than 50 products and 150 technical documents including toolkits, templates, studies, and plans.
These resources are available on the program website to aid in project implementation.
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