Sustainable Manufacturing and Environmental Pollution Programme


Starting in July 2022, the SMEP programme has been launching a staggered set of open calls for innovative projects[1] to reduce or eliminate waste and manufacturing pollution in target countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. Projects should result in either proof of concept or a piloted solution, or both. To start the application process for funding please register your interest here
Individual Terms of Reference will be provided  for each call. 

SMEP Open Call – Tanneries & Leather Interventions


Pollution mitigation interventions in the tanneries and leather sector, in target countries Bangladesh, Pakistan, Ethiopia, Kenya and Tanzania:  This call is now closed for submissions. Evaluation is ongoing and shortlisted candidates will be informed shortly of what is expected during the Request for Proposal Stage.

The Programme notes the strategic economic importance of the tanneries sector in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa and the stakeholder momentum to address the complex environmental management and human health challenges within the sector. The sector remains a critical aspect of, and a focus sector for, the SMEP programme.  

Procurement will be competitive, fair and transparent, and structured around two stages:

  • An Expression of interest (via the SMEP Submission Portal) which will require interested parties to produce 1) a capability statement on their experience and expertise in this sector, capacity to deliver on the scope of the call and 2) to undergo preliminary due diligence screening.      The Expression of Interest was open between 4 August 2023 and 11 September 2023.
  • Candidates will be evaluated based on this initial procurement prerequisite and shortlisted candidates will be invited to prepare full proposals (Request for Proposals) detailing their proposed solutions/ interventions. Note that final selection of successful candidates and projects will be dependent on the SMEP geographic spread at the time (amongst other criteria). 

Please consult the Terms of Reference for this call and SMEP website regularly for updates.  

An information of webinar was held on 10th August 2023 to present information on key aspects of this call and to  facilitate an interactive question-and-answer session. 

The following webinar documents can assist candidates when applying:

– A Questions & Answers log
– A copy of the presentation
– Video recording can be accessed here

The SMEP tanneries procurement covers four thematic areas, as set out below:

Additional priorities areas include Gender Equality and Social Inclusion as well as reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emissions:

SMEP has developed a voluntary platform to support collaboration opportunities amongst interested parties. This platform is accessible through the Submissions Portal – Voluntary Contact Form. The details provided through this process will be treated with confidentiality. SMEP will only facilitate introductions amongst interested parties who register their details.

Please contact should you wish to share your availability to collaborate with other partners or if you wish to discuss the nature of the collaboration opportunity sought to develop a concept proposal. Note that the collaboration platform is open and visible to all parties who sign up for the platform.

The Terms of Reference can be accessed here.

Contact: Please do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions:  Faith Gara and Elzette Henshilwood : 

SMEP Current Calls: Textile Interventions

Market-aligned interventions for cleaner production in the textiles value chain, in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, launched on 12thof October 2022 and closed 31st of January 2023. This call is currently in the Request for Proposal stage and successful grantees are expected to start implementation in Nov / Dec. 2023.

Under this call, SMEP encourages submission of concepts that address problematic practices in the textiles sector, including but not limited to excessive consumption of raw materials, water and energy and poor management of liquid effluents and solid waste.   The SMEP programme is cognisant of a wide range of interventions, collaborations, and research priorities underway in the textiles arena. SMEP aims to invest in research and interventions that complement these where possible.

The SMEP textiles procurement covers four thematic areas, as set out below

Drawing Gender Equality and Social Inclusion as a strong focus into the above themes is encouraged.


Refer to the Textiles Terms of Reference for detailed information on the scope of the procurement, as well as the application guidelines.

A series of webinars was organised to present information on key aspects of this call and facilitate an interactive question-and-answer session. The first webinar was held on 20 October 2022 and the second webinar on 24 November 2022. Please find the recordings of the webinars here and here as well as a copy of the amalgamated Questions and Answers log here.


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