Giga is proposing a $5 billion Connectivity Bond

"Together with ITU, we are proposing a $5 billion dollar donor-backed bond — to support last mile infrastructure and school connectivity. We have recently started conversations with interested Member States — and, of course, we would invite members of our Board and partners to find out how they can be involved."
Henrietta Fore
Executive Director, UNICEF
Remarks to the UNICEF Executive Board, September 2021
“Together, ITU and UNICEF are bringing forward the Giga bond - a $5 billion Connectivity Bond, creating the first bold step in connecting every school in the World to the Internet and aiming at narrowing the digital divide.”
Mr. Houlin Zhao
ITU Secretary-General

UNICEF and ITU are proposing to launch a $5 billion Connectivity Bond. This will provide the significant upfront funding needed to accelerate critical infrastructure investments and mobilize public and private capital. It will be one layer of the estimated $428 billion needed to connect every school in the world to the Internet.

Bond proceeds will be used to invest in last mile infrastructure, research and data gathering, real-time monitoring of school connectivity, and connectivity in communities around schools. The Connectivity Bond can have a similar impact on connectivity as the Gavi/IFFIm Bonds have had on vaccines: aligning financing, creating a clear procurement path, and providing real-time data about results to donors and beyond.

Giga is looking for donor governments and private foundations to provide multi-year commitments to serve as backing for the Bond. The first donors will build the capital foundation to support an initiative that aims to narrow the digital divide, a divide that has become even wider during the Covid-19 pandemic.

If you would like to get involved as a donor or as an advocate, please contact your UNICEF country office or national committee, cc