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Who Gets the Debt If Sudan Splits? Ben Leo

Ben LeoA 2011 referendum in Southern Sudan will determine the sub-nation’s independence – and it’s just one month away. Ahead of the South’s possible secession, Sudanese leaders are scrambling to find solutions to a host of questions, a critical one being: What should be done with Sudan’s crushing $35 billion external debt burden?

How $500 Million in U.S. Aid Can Help Pakistan’s Flood Victims Rebuild

This is a joint post with Wren Elhai

Last week, the Government of Pakistan hosted officials from the United States and more than 30 donor countries and multilateral agencies in Islamabad for the Pakistan Development Forum. The big news from the two-day event was the announcement that the United States would accelerate disbursement of $500 million in previously committed aid to help Pakistan meet its flood rebuilding needs. (This pledge is above and beyond the more than $500 million the United States had previously committed to the immediate humanitarian needs from the flood.) What officials did not announces is what the US flood aid will be used for. My CGD colleagues Alan Gelb and Caroline Decker have recommended one proposal that the U.S. policymakers are currently considering: directing up to $500 million to finance a housing capitalization fund for flood-affected households.

U.S. Development Strategy in Pakistan after the Floods: Molly Kinder

Molly KinderAs if Pakistan needed more troubles, this summer’s catastrophic flooding stretched the capacity of that country’s civilian government to the breaking point. How can the United States act to shore up a key ally and put a strategically critical country back on the path towards development and stability? My guest this week is Molly Kinder, a senior policy analyst here at the Center for Global Development.

Does Funding Pakistan Flood Reconstruction Mean Neglecting Long-Term Development?

This is a joint post with Wren Elhai.

Today on ForeignPolicy.com, we’ve written an op/ed with our colleague Molly Kinder that makes the case for why the United States should do everything possible to help Pakistan rebuild basic infrastructure in the areas devastated by this summer’s catastrophic floods. Here, we wanted to expand on one of the points from that op/ed—the debate over repurposing money from the existing $7.5 U.S. aid commitment, authorized a year ago by what’s called the Kerry-Lugar-Berman bill.

The question of how much can and should be repurposed from Kerry-Lugar-Berman is dividing policymakers in Congress and in the Obama administration. The House of Representatives has already passed a resolution that, among other things, “supports the use of funds authorized by [Kerry-Lugar-Berman] for the purposes of providing long-term recovery and rehabilitation for flood-affected areas and populations.”

Can Oil Money Be Spent Well? Alan Gelb on Resource Revenues and Development.

Alan GelbMany developing countries have found that large deposits of oil or other natural resources are more a curse than a blessing. My guest on this week's Wonkcast is Alan Gelb, a senior fellow at the Center for Global Development. Together with co-author Sina Grassman, Alan has written a paper that explores the options facing developing countries with abundant natural resources and draws on historical evidence to recommend best practices for dodging the 'resource curse.'

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