Among the multilateral development banks, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) stands out for its strong financial support for COVID-19 response relative to its overall lending volume. While ADB has proven to be responsive to government’s general financing needs during the crisis, has ADB’s performance matched the specific needs of the governments and populations facing the crisis in the region? Have the greater volumes of support actually targeted the people, places, and sectors that most need it? In a new policy paper, we tackle these questions.
CGD Policy Blogs
The G7 countries pledged a massive scale-up in support of developing-country financing at their recent summit in the UK. How it will be financed remains an open question. But analyzing trends in recent debt flows by lenders to developing countries, and taking stock of the Debt Service Suspension Initiative (DSSI), can provide some important lessons for the G7’s new ambitions.
Current Budget Rules Stand in the Way of a Reasonable Path for US DFC to Realize Ambition on Climate and Pandemic Response
When Congress created the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) through the BUILD Act in 2018, it gave the new agency authority to make equity investments in funds and firms in developing country markets, building on the traditional lending programs of DFCs’ predecessor agency, OPIC.
In the Secretive World of Government-to-Government Lending, 100 Chinese Debt Contracts Offer a Trove of New Information
Is Chinese financing good for developing countries? Taking stock of China’s lending activities has long been hindered by the lack of publicly available data on dimensions like loan volumes and interest rates, let alone more esoteric features like loan collateral or default contingencies. A pathbreaking new study by researchers at AidData at William & Mary, the Kiel Institute for the World Economy, the Peterson Institute for International Economics, Georgetown Law School, and the Center for Global Development changes that.
The US International Development Finance Corporation has become a Rorschach test for the policy community: when they look at it, everyone sees something different.
The Biden administration and the Congress rightly went big in the recently passed American Rescue Plan at a time of tremendous need. The package was appropriately focused on the domestic side, but it did not neglect the rest of the world. One might reasonably ask then why $1 billion or $2 billion could not have been included for fighting the poverty, food insecurity, and health crises driven by the pandemic. That would have amounted 0.05 to 0.1 percent of the total package. And it would have been multiplied many times over in additional poverty reduction dollars, because that it was the MDB model does.
This week, the Inter-American Development Bank’s governors gather for their annual meeting. Much is at stake as the region reels under the compound crises of COVID-19 and recession. But none of this urgency is yet evident in the IDB’s public case to its member countries.
Today the IDB is again making the case for a capital increase to its shareholders. Yet, despite an unfolding crisis that threatens development progress in Latin America to a degree that eclipses the Global Financial Crisis, talk of a financing cliff at the bank is absent from its appeal for more capital. That’s because a spike in crisis financing has yet to materialize in IDB’s lending numbers.
Makhtar Diop, former minister of finance in Senegal and current vice president for infrastructure at the World Bank, has been tapped to be the next head of the International Finance Corporation, the World Bank Group’s private sector investment arm. This is welcome news: Diop’s experience and talents can help steer IFC towards greater development impact during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.
Last week DFC announced that it signed a framework agreement with the government of Ecuador to refinance up to $3.5 billion of the country’s external debt to China. In exchange, according to reporting by the Financial Times, the Ecuadorian government will commit to exclude Chinese companies from its telecom networks.