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CGD Policy Blogs

 

Obama’s Meeting with Jokowi Yields Disappointing Results for Forest and Peatland Protection

Last Friday, I wrote about how President Obama should hail Indonesian President Joko ("Jokowi") Widodo’s dramatic announcement last week to halt further development of peatlands and to initiate a major program to restore peatlands that have already been disturbed. While the Joint Statement out of the meeting does mention peatland, the US response to Jokowi’s potentially game-changing new course of action appears to fall short.

Cashing In on Coal

India is getting some serious cash from coal. According to official estimates, the government will get nearly $250 billion in revenues over a period of 30 years from the sale of over two hundred coal blocks to private bidders. Given India’s record of corruption and mismanagement of natural resources, it is difficult to be optimistic that it will be able to cash in on this windfall and use it for development. But there are a few silver linings that may prove us (happily) wrong.

Doing the Math on AIIB Governance

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank’s new articles of agreement contain a great deal of information about shareholding and governance in the new institution. However, the articles require some additional analysis in order to answer key questions about voting power and board composition. Based on the information provided, we are able to generate voting shares as well as some preliminary conclusions about the composition of the AIIB’s board of directors.

I Just Read the AIIB’s Articles of Agreement, and Here’s What I Think

The Chinese government has published the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank’s (AIIB) newly adopted articles of agreement. That’s an encouraging early sign of transparency, and more importantly, of timely transparency. Much of what’s in the articles was foreshadowed by previous comments and reporting, but there are surprises, such as stronger-than-expected veto powers for the Chinese and the possibility for non-sovereign membership.

Guess Who’s (Not) Coming to Dinner? The Unrepresentative Statistics of White House State Dinners

Here at the Center for Global Development we’re concerned with how the practices of rich countries affect developing countries.  So with Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff visiting President Obama this week, it’s a natural time to ask, who gets invited to White House State Dinners and who gets left out in the cold?  It turns out that Europe and Latin America get wined and dined, while Sub-Saharan Africa has gotten snubbed.  So, for that matter, has Southeast Asia.

India Devolves—but Will States Spend (Well) on Health?

Health is a state rather than national subject in many countries (as we’ve discussed here and here), and in India this tendency has just become more pronounced. Based on the 14th Finance Commission’s recommendations (more here), money coming from the Central government to states will be less tied up and states more free to spend that money in whatever way they want. 

 

ADB’s Merger Means ‘Big Gains for Development’

Good news from the Asian Development Bank's annual meetings in Baku, Azerbaijan this past weekend, where shareholders approved a plan to almost double the amount of financing available to developing countries. Bank president Takehiko Nakao's proposal to merge the ADB's concessional and non-concessional lending was nearly two years in the making.

Reducing Indonesia’s Deforestation Rate: A Glass Half-Full

This week, World Resources Institute’s Global Forest Watch released new data  showing that Indonesia’s deforestation rate declined significantly in 2013.[1]  Based on satellite imagery analysis conducted by a team at the University of Maryland, Indonesia lost just over a million hectares of tree cover of in 2013, compared to double that the previous year.

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