Dear GEF Council Members, Operational Focal Points and GEF Agencies,
I am following up my message sent to you on March 19 on COVID-19 (coronavirus). This note is to follow up what I have promised in the note, namely, an update regarding the GEF project cycle.
In light of this difficult and extraordinary situation, I am writing to inform you that I have decided to provide an automatic extension of three months to the business standard deadlines applicable to the submission of CEO Endorsements or Approvals, as well as the actual CEO Endorsements or Approvals. This three month extension applies to all projects and child projects under Programs approved in the June and December 2019 work programs as well as to MSPs approved after March 1st, 2019.
Specifically, it applies to the submission deadline of CEO Approvals / Endorsements (normally 8 months for MSPs / 12 months for FSPs) as well as to the CEO Approvals / Endorsements deadline (normally 12 months for MSPs / 18 months for FSPs). Please note that there is no need to submit any notification signed by either the GEF OFP or the Agency.
I am granting this extension in line with the provisions for exceptions to business standards anticipated by the Policy on Project Cancellation (OP/PL/02 – December 20, 2018) in cases of extraordinary events or circumstances beyond the control of parties, including epidemics, which may prevent the business standards from being met. The coronavirus pandemic clearly fits the criteria defined by the policy.
We will continue to monitor the situation and will come back to you in due course if more time needs to be added to this extension, in the event that the extraordinary conditions of the pandemic affecting the work continue to prevail.
Many thanks to those who have alerted us about the obstacles affecting field missions and project preparation work as a result of the pandemic. We appreciate your messages and the concerns expressed for all.
Please do not hesitate to contact our team with any questions that you may have.
With best regards,
Naoko Ishii, GEF CEO and Chairperson