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 Fund Secretariat

The Fund Secretariat was established in 1991 in Montreal, Canada. It assists the Executive Committee in the discharge of its functions. Its activities include: development of the three-year plan and budget and a system for fund disbursement; management of the business planning cycle of the Multilateral Fund; monitoring the expenditures and activities of the implementing agencies; preparation of policy papers and other documents; review and assessment of investment projects, country programmes and the business plans and work programmes of the implementing agencies; liaison between the Committee, governments and implementing agencies; and servicing meetings of the Executive Committee. The Secretariat also includes the monitoring and evaluation Function which was established by the Executive Committee in May 1997.

The Fund Secretariat is not mandated to implement projects and programmes but to ensure that the objectives of the Multilateral Fund are adhered to and to provide liaison between the Executive Committee, governments and implementing agencies.

The separation of the management of the Multilateral Fund from its implementation activities has proven to be effective in maintaining the credibility and independence of the Multilateral Fund by fostering the development of the operational policies needed to achieve cost efficiency in a largely grant-based programme. It has enabled the Fund Secretariat to apply a rigorous project review procedure applicable to all funding requests submitted to the Executive Committee. This is reinforced by an open, transparent and dynamic policy development process undertaken by the Fund Secretariat in cooperation with the implementing agencies. The project review process enables support of all funding requests that meet the Executive Committee’s approval criteria but often at a lower level than originally requested, leading to significant savings.

 Staff list

The Fund Secretariat is headed by the Chief Officer who reports directly to the Executive Committee and is comprised of fifteen professional and thirteen general service staff members.

Professional Staff

Ms. Tina Birmpili
Chief Officer

Ms. Rossana Silva Repetto
Deputy Chief Officer

Mr. Fadi Abou-Elias
Senior Administrative and Fund Management Officer

Mr. Misha Alberizzi
Chief of Unit, Information Systems

Ms. Nuria Castells Cabre
Senior Monitoring and Evaluation Officer

Ms. Laura Duong
Programme Management Officer

Ms. Kata Koppel
Information Management Officer

Mr. Jack Lee
Associate Administrative Officer


Mr. Balaji Natarajan
Senior Programme Management Officer

Mr. Alejandro Ramirez-Pabon
Senior Programme Management Officer

Mr. Federico San Martini
Senior Programme Management Officer

Ms. Mirian Vega
Programme Management Officer

Ms. Xiaojuan Wang
Programme Management Officer

Ms. Elina Yuen
Programme Management Officer


 Tina Birmpili, Chief Officer of the Fund Secretariat

Ms. Birmpili became Chief Officer of the Multilateral Fund Secretariat on 1 March 2022. She is an international professional with over twenty-five years of experience in policy analysis and implementation on sustainable development and management. Previously, she was the Deputy Executive Secretary for the UN Convention to Combat Desertification. Prior to that, Ms. Birmpili was the Executive Secretary of the Ozone Secretariat and was instrumental in the extensive negotiations that resulted in the Kigali Amendment of the Montreal Protocol, hailed as one of the most important climate agreements reached by all countries of the world.

She is a former Minister of Environment, Energy and Climate Change in Greece and a former Ambassador to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Her academic qualifications include a Bachelor of Science in Physics from the University of Athens, a Master of Science in Environmental Technology and a Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental Management from Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London.

 Omar El Arini, Chief Officer of the Multilateral Fund Secretariat (1991-2003)

Omar El-Arini was the first Chief Officer of the Multilateral Fund. He personally pioneered the interpretation and application of eligible incremental costs, and oversaw the development of a framework that led to the approval of over 4,500 projects for 140 Article 5 countries. He played a key role in shifting the Multilateral Fund from a project-by-project approach to the sectoral and national phase-out approach with performance based funding. Omar El-Arini was named by the Executive Committee of the Multilateral Fund as the Honorary Chief Officer of the Multilateral Fund.

 Maria Nolan, Chief Officer of the Fund Secretariat (2004-2013)

Ms. Nolan, a British national educated at the University of London, has a wealth of experience on the protection of the ozone layer both at the national level, in her capacity as the Head of Stratospheric Ozone Policy in the United Kingdom, and internationally as policy adviser to UNEP's Methyl Bromide Technical Options Committee as President of the Montreal Protocol's Implementation Committee and as the co-chair of the Protocol's Open Ended Working Group in 2003. She was instrumental in developing the U.K. policy on the reduction of emissions of Hydro Fluoro Carbons (HFC's) which was used as a basis for developing EU-wide measures. She served as Chief Officer of the Multilateral Fund from February 2004 to September 2013 and was instrumental in leading the Fund Secretariat towards the 2010 CFC target and re-orienting the work of Secretariat to deal with the accelerated phase-out of HCFCs.

 Eduardo Ganem, Chief Officer of the Fund Secretariat (2013-2022)

Mr. Ganem became Chief Officer of the Multilateral Fund Secretariat on 1 October 2013. He has served the Multilateral Fund Secretariat in different capacities since 1991 including a period as Deputy Chief Officer. He began his professional life over 30 years ago developing environmental impact studies in various regions of Mexico. Since then, he has worked with UNEP’s Latin America and Caribbean regional office as well as its Industry and Environment office. Mr. Ganem’s academic qualifications include a degree in Environmental Engineering from the Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana in Mexico City, and a Master of Science in Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin, specializing in environmental protection and control, and water and waste treatment.