Promoting Sustainable Consumption and Production

European Union

Relevent Country: Tonga

The EU has launched the “SWITCH-Asia Programme” aiming at supporting the transition of energy-intense and high polluting industries in the Asia-Pacific region such as plastics and waste, textiles and leather, agri-food and beverage (most of which are women-oriented sectors).


The SWITCH-Asia Programme is currently organised around 2 components:

  • A Grant scheme component supporting the greening of value-chains between Europe and the region underpinning goals of the Global Gateway
  • A “Policy Support Component” providing direct support to governments and regional organisations in adopting sustainable policy and regulatory frameworks as well as facilitating policy dialogues between countries in the eligible regions
  • This call for proposals is proposed within the programme’s grant scheme.
  • The global objective of this call for proposals is: to support the transition of the region to a low-carbon, resource efficient and circular economy, whilst promoting more sustainable value chains and products between the region and Europe, contributing to the recovery of local economies.
  • The specific objective(s) of this call for proposals are:
  • support the green transition of key economic value-chains either within the eligible region or to the EU to reduce their carbon and environmental footprints.
  • ensure that available or new green and climate finance instruments will respond to the needs of MSMEs in the region.
  • support local consumers in acting more responsibly in choosing low-carbon and environmentally and socially sustainable products and services.


In line with the priorities of Global Gateway, the European Green Deal, and the EU’s Indo-Pacific Strategy, the priorities of this call for proposals are:

  • Priority 1: Support MSMEs in reducing their greenhouse gas emissions and the environmental impact of their industrial production, improving resource mobilisation and efficiency and adopting circular economy practices
  • Priority 2: Engaging with consumers on low-carbon practices and sustainable consumption and production practices Applicants proposing projects should address one of the aforementioned priorities.

Sectors or Themes

  • In line with the Global Gateway and the EU Green Deal, and reflecting regional challenges, this call for proposals will target primarily (but not exclusively) the following sectors:

Textiles and leather:

  • The sector highly contributes to the increase of global greenhouse gas emissions due to its long supply chains and energy intensive production, including energy and material intensive processes in which large amounts of water and chemicals are used. It represents one of the major job providers in the region, accounting for around 80% of total export revenue in Bangladesh and Cambodia, while over 50% in Pakistan. The majority of employees are women, most of which highly exposed to harmful products and to long and irregular working hours.

Food sector (incl. agri-food and fishing):

  • While agri-food sectors sustain livelihoods of major part of the population in the region, its energy and water-intense processing, the use of large quantities of non-environmentally friendly packaging, and a very significant amount of food loss/ waste makes it one of the most polluting and emitting economic sectors. In most cases, they are poorly paid and are required to work long hours also in post-harvest and industrial processing jobs like drying and storage.

Building and construction:

  • This sector has a great potential for climate change mitigation in the region. The possibilities of retrofitting existing buildings for energy and emissions savings remain mostly unexplored. Although, few efficient technologies remain in use, there exist a combination of ineffective policies and a lack of investments in sustainable building and construction sectors in the region. Likewise, there is a great potential for water savings in the sector, with water embodied in the construction material corresponding to a considerable amount of the total water consumption in a building’s life cycle.

Plastics with particular focus on plastic packaging (and its waste):

  • In Asia, millions of plastic containers are consumed per minute, half of which are single-use items. Plastic released from Asian rivers contribute to 86% of the global marine litter16. Of the 10 rivers in the world with the highest amount of plastic waste, 8 are located in the region. The main bottleneck is represented by the overuse of plastics in daily activities and the lack of viable alternatives for products’ packaging. Selected projects will also support policymakers in the region during the negotiation of the Global Agreement on Plastics, providing them with evidence on viable solutions to address the problem of plastics both downstream and upstream of value chains.


  • The electronics sector highly contributes to environmental and public health challenges because it often contains lead, mercury, cadmium, and other heavy metals that might contaminate soil/water and leads to heavy metal poisoning. This will result in developmental delays for children/fetus, respiratory issues, neurological damage, and increased risk of certain cancers. The health risks can be worse if there are no proper protective measures during the e-waste handling process. Considering these risks, both production and recycling of e-waste need to be improved, both in terms of material recovery and health and safety measures.

Funding Information

  • The overall indicative amount made available under this call for proposals is EUR 24 million. The contracting authority reserves the right not to award all available funds. Indicative allocation of funds by lot:
  • Lot 1: EUR 20 million for Asia
  • Lot 2: EUR 4 million for Pacific
  • If the allocation indicated for a specific lot cannot be used due to insufficient quality or number of proposals received, the contracting authority reserves the right to reallocate the remaining funds to another lot.

Size of grants

  • Any grant requested under this call for proposals must fall between the following minimum and maximum amounts:
  • minimum amount: EUR 500.000
  • maximum amount: EUR 1.500.000


  • The initial planned duration of an action may not be lower than 36 months nor exceed 48 months.

Eligibility Criteria

Lead applicant(s)

In order to be eligible for a grant, the lead applicant must:

  • be a legal person and
  • be non-profit-making or
  • be a business and for-profit organisation (e.g. Micro-Small-and-Medium-Sized Enterprises/MSMEs, retailers, chambers of commerce, industrial clusters or associations), national and regional clean production centres, universities, research centres, centres for technology transfer, consumer organisations, development organisations, trade federations and labour organisations, or
  • be a specific type of organisation such as: non-governmental organisation, public sector operator.
  • be established in a Member State of the European Union (Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden) or
  • be established in one of the following Asian-Pacific countries: Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), Indonesia, India, Lao PDR, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Malaysia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam, Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Timor Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu or
  • be established in member countries of the OECD, in case of contracts exclusively implemented in a Least Developed Country or a Highly Indebted Country as included in the list of ODA recipients, or
  • be established in a Member State of the European Economic Area (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway), or
  • be established in countries from the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA II) (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia, Türkiye) and
  • be directly responsible for the preparation and management of the action with the co-applicant(s) and affiliated entity(ies), not acting as an intermediary.
  • The lead applicant must act with co-applicant(s) as specified hereafter


  • Co-applicants participate in designing and implementing the action, and the costs they incur are eligible in the same way as those incurred by the lead applicant.
  • Co-applicants must satisfy the eligibility criteria as applicable to the lead applicant himself.
  • Co-applicants must sign the mandate form.
  • If awarded the grant contract, the co-applicant(s) (if any) will become beneficiary(ies) in the action (together with the coordinator).

Affiliated entities

  • The lead applicant and its co-applicant(s) may act with affiliated entity(ies). Only the following entities may be considered as affiliated entities to the lead applicant and/or to co-applicant(s):
  • Only entities having a structural link with the applicants (i.e. the lead applicant or a co-applicant), in particular a legal or capital link. This structural link encompasses mainly two notions:
  • Control on the annual financial statements, consolidated financial statements and related reports of certain types of undertakings:
  • Entities affiliated to an applicant may hence be:
  • Entities directly or indirectly controlled by the applicant (daughter companies or first-tier subsidiaries). They may also be entities controlled by an entity controlled by the applicant (granddaughter companies or second-tier subsidiaries) and the same applies to further tiers of control;
  • Entities directly or indirectly controlling the applicant (parent companies). Likewise, they may be entities controlling an entity controlling the applicant;
  • Entities under the same direct or indirect control as the applicant (sister companies).
  • Membership, i.e. the applicant is legally defined as a e.g. network, federation, association in which the proposed affiliated entities also participate or the applicant participates in the same entity (e.g. network, federation, association,) as the proposed affiliated entities.