Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia Project


SACEP and World Bank are collaborating to formulate and implement a US$ 50 Million regional project on ‘Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia’.

The menace of plastic waste that pollutes land, flows into river systems and, ultimately into oceans, poses national, regional, and global threats to development. The qualities that make plastic useful—lightness, durability, strength, versatility and low production costs—have resulted in fast growing demand, but mismanaged plastic waste has also created a mounting global ocean pollution crisis.

The fifteenth meeting of the Governing Council of SACEP held on 06th November 2019 in Dhaka, Bangladesh endorsed the SACEP’s collaboration with the World Bank and their development partners to formulate and implement a regional project on Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia involving SACEP as an implementing agency for the benefit of the South Asian Region.

The Project Development Objective (PDO) of the Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia (PRS) project is to catalyze actions that reduce the flow of plastic pollution into South Asian Seas. The project consists of four main components totaling US$40 million from IDA that will be implemented over a period of five years in all eight countries in South Asia – Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. A summary of activities is provided as follows.

The project has three components:

Component 1. Supporting Competitive Block Grant Investments to Reduce Plastic Waste
  1. Supporting circular plastic economy solutions to reduce plastic waste by implementing a program of regional competitive block grant investments, providing Regional Competitive Block Grants (“RBGs”) to eligible organizations in South Asia (“Eligible RBG Beneficiaries”).
  2. Facilitating exchange of circular plastic economy knowledge between Eligible RBG Beneficiaries and selected South Asian countries and promoting awareness raising activities.
Component 2. Leveraging Public and Private Sector Engagement and Solutions
  1. Supporting development of strategies, action plans, policies, and standards to harmonize plastic pollution mitigation measures through: (a) developing and implementing a multi-year plastic policy support program, working with leading universities and organizations; (b) developing a database for lifecycle analysis, data collection, and modelling related to plastic across selected industry value chains; and (c) supporting communication activities.
  2. Supporting circular use of plastic in the economy through regional public private collaboration and engagement in South Asia, including designing and organizing annual or more frequent meetings of representatives from public and private sectors.
Component 3. Strengthening Regional Integration Institutions
    1. Carrying out works to support construction of SACEP’s new headquarters and providing technical assistance to, and building capacity of, SACEP to discharge its functions, including coordination with relevant regional organizations and uniform collection, analysis, and interpretation of pollution data.
    2. Supporting development of a fund for sustainability of existing activities and accelerating circular plastic economy solutions (“Sustainability Fund”).
  1. Supporting SACEP in the implementation and overall management of the Project, regarding the aspects related to social and environmental safeguards, monitoring, reporting and evaluation, complaints handling mechanisms, as well as financial audits.

The South Asia Cooperative Environment Programme (SACEP) is the implementing agency for this project.


# Document Title Date Document Type
1 Labor Management Procedures Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia (P171269) (English) October 27, 2020 Procedure and Checklist
2 Environmental and Social Management Framework (ESMF) Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia (P171269) (English) April 7, 2020 Environmental and Social Management Plan
3 Environmental and Social Impact Assessment Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia (P171269) (English) April 7, 2020 Environmental and Social Assessment,Social Assessment,Environmental Assessment
4 Stakeholder Engagement Plan (SEP) Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia (P171269) (English) April 7, 2020 Stakeholder Engagement Plan
5 Project Information Document - Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia - P171269 (English) March 30, 2020 Project Information Document
6 Stakeholder Engagement Plan (SEP) - Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia - P171269 (English) March 27, 2020 Stakeholder Engagement Plan
7 Appraisal Environmental and Social Review Summary (ESRS) - Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia - P171269 (English) March 27, 2020 Environmental and Social Review Summary
8 Environmental and Social Commitment Plan (ESCP) - Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia - P171269 (English) March 27, 2020 Environmental and Social Commitment Plan
9 Environmental and Social Management Framework (ESMF) Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia (P171269) (English) February 28, 2020 Environmental and Social Management Plan
10 Stakeholder Engagement Plan (SEP) Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia (P171269) (English) February 28, 2020 Stakeholder Engagement Plan
11 Environment and Social Assessment Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia (P171269) (English) February 28, 2020 Environmental and Social Assessment
12 Concept Project Information Document (PID) - Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia - P171269 (English) December 12, 2019 Project Information Document
13 Concept Environmental and Social Review Summary (ESRS) - Plastic free Rivers and Seas for South Asia - P171269 (English) December 11, 2019 Environmental and Social Review Summary

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