The Inter-American Development Bank, or IDB, and the Mexican government said they were launching a $2.5 million contest to finance sustainable energy technologies.

"The ideas selected could receive up to $200,000 and, in the case of proposals from regional consortiums led by Mexican institutions, up to $400,000," the Mexican Energy Secretariat, the National Science and Technology Council, or Conacyt, and the IDB said in a joint statement.

Rules for entering the contest, which runs until Oct. 31, can be obtained at, the sponsors said.

"With this mechanism, we will contribute to consolidating the formation of institutional capabilities in the academic-scientific communities via the creation of regional alliances between researchers and the private sector," the statement said.

The initial projects promoted should focus on "the adoption, innovation, assimilation, development and transfer of technologies" in the areas of renewable energy and energy efficiency "that have an impact on the local or regional area via the development of sustainable economies and the reduction of poverty," the statement said.

The contest is a product of the memorandum of understanding signed on June 9 to promote cooperation in areas of common interest between Mexico and the IDB.