Skip to main content

Reports and Papers

Recent Post

Debt Dynamics and Financial Stability in Africa

June 6, 2023

African countries were severely hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, which quickly drove the continent into its worst recession in fifty years. According to the 2022 African Development Bank African Economic Outlook (AEO), real GDP declined by -1.5% in 2020 compared to growth of 3.3% in 2019. Africa has recovered quickly from the recession, but this has not translated into favorable [...]

Read More

Mustering the private sector for development and climate in the Global South – Is it realistic?

May 11, 2023

The 2015 Addis Ababa “Billions to Trillions” initiative called for stepped-up private sector investments and financial flows in developing countries.  But instead of closing, the “trillion” dollar gap between development and climate needs continues to widen.   Was it a fairy tale? What is certain is that the current operating model of the aid agencies and the development finance institutions, [...]

Read More

Gender Integration in Multilateral Development Banks’ COVID-19 Response Efforts

May 11, 2023

Research demonstrates that the COVID-19 pandemic has had differential effects by gender, with women experiencing higher job and income loss, increased rates of domestic violence, and mounting care burdens globally. While governments and civil society organizations were pivotal to mitigating the impacts of the pandemic, international institutions, and multilateral development banks (MDBs) in particular, also played a role in financing [...]

Read More

The trillion-dollar bank: Making IBRD fit for purpose in the 21st century

April 12, 2023

The World Bank Evolution Roadmap is being developed at a critical moment in time. Developing countries have been hit by the unprecedented impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Ukraine war, with loss of fiscal buffers, increased indebtedness, and erosion of creditworthiness, leading to a decline in growth prospects and leaving them exposed to further crises. Progress on poverty reduction [...]

Read More

An Innovative IFI Operating Model for the 21st Century

April 6, 2023

Last year saw major contributions to the international finance reform agenda, including Finance for Climate Action (the “Songwe-Stern report”), the Bridgetown Agenda, and the Independent Review of Multilateral Development Banks’ Capital Adequacy Frameworks submitted to the G20 finance ministers. 2023 will be a critical period for implementing reforms to meet the scale and urgency of the climate crisis while also addressing the other crises facing [...]

Read More

Where has the money come from to finance rising climate ambition?

March 31, 2023

Key messages There are growing concerns that rising ambition on international climate finance will squeeze out a focus on poverty reduction. This is understandable: total official flows have risen more slowly than reported increases in climate finance demonstrating that climate finance has not been ‘new and additional’. Observed increases in climate finance do not appear to have come about because [...]

Read More

Evolution of the World Bank Group – A Report to Governors

March 30, 2023

Report for the April 12, 2023 Development Committee Meeting.

Read More

Concessional Climate Finance: Is the MDB Architecture Working?

March 14, 2023

Our paper evaluates the climate financial intermediary funds (FIFs) which are one of the largest sources of multilateral grant and concessional finance for climate, especially for middle-income countries. Donors have contributed more than $50 billion to these funds. The World Bank acts as a trustee for twelve climate FIFs. In this paper, we focus on the three largest: the Global Environment [...]

Read More

If You Want Clients to Borrow from the World Bank for Net Zero Investments, Make It Easier

March 9, 2023

High-income countries trying to reach net-zero targets are confronting the fact that existing environmental regulations make it harder to build low-carbon infrastructure. Lobbying groups in the US, for example, are using regulatory tools to block geothermal, solar, and wind facilities. Providing subsidies and incentives for low carbon isn’t enough: revisiting, rewriting, and in some cases retiring these regulations is going [...]

Read More

More than meets the eye? Assessing MDBs’ contribution to tackling global challenges

March 7, 2023

In its scale and duration, the Covid-19 pandemic was a stark reminder that global challenges need global solutions and coordination. Meanwhile, pressure to contain the increase in global temperatures has escalated. Conflict and violence are on the rise. The international response to these challenges is nowhere near enough. This can partly be explained by the theory of the under-provision of global public [...]

Read More

Aftermath of War in Europe The West VS. the Global South?

February 17, 2023

This publication provides an insight into the lens through which countries of the Global South view the current period of successive crises, brought about by an ongoing global pandemic and a war in Europe. It highlights how the combined weight of history, culture, and geography has shaped the Global South’s interests and is influencing its foreign policy stance during one [...]

Read More

Energy Trends and Outlook Through 2023: Surviving the Energy Crisis While Building a Greener Future

February 13, 2023

The volatility in energy markets since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2019/2020 has continued, with unprecedented uncertainty about global energy supply developing over the course of 2022 in the wake of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, against a backdrop of weakening macroeconomic conditions and high inflation. While some perceived this as a potential setback for the energy transition, others saw it [...]

Read More

The World Needs a Green Bank

February 1, 2023

Humanity is losing the climate battle, and existing international institutions are not delivering on climate change. Hence, there is a need for a new international institution that would be a repository for global knowledge on climate change, and would advise governments on climate policies, develop green projects across the Global South, mobilize financing for those projects, and support project implementation. The proposed [...]

Read More

Tapping the potential of borrower-led multilateral development banks

January 27, 2023

About 30 multilateral development banks (MDBs) operate across the globe today. While the World Bank and major regional MDBs (the ‘legacy’ MDBs) have a high profile, most MDBs are less well known. In light of the serious challenges facing the world and the limitations of other development agencies, it should be a priority to integrate these MDBs into the international [...]

Read More

Sailing On a Storming Sea: Policy Challenges For Developing Countries 2022-2025

December 29, 2022

The current bleak outlook for the world economy, with a likely recession in major economies, high inflation, rising interest rates, and slow productivity growth, will adversely emerging market and developing countries (EMDE) over the next few years. Unfortunately, these countries emerged from COVID-19 with less fiscal space and rising debt service payments. Policies to insulate the domestic economy from these [...]

Read More

Climate Diplomacy and the Global South

December 2, 2022

One aim of COP27 was to persuade countries to make commitments to reduce emissions and earmark resources for technologies to be transferred from industrialized states to less developed states. Hovering over the COP27 was the reluctance of wealthy states to live up to their 2009 commitment to provide $100 billion to poor countries, financial assistance for adaptation (as opposed to just mitigation [...]

Read More

Our Wish List for the World Bank’s Evolution Roadmap

November 7, 2022

The assignment is clear. During this year’s Annual Meetings of the IMF and World Bank, shareholders instructed the World Bank to develop a work program for its own evolution (“to identify gaps in the Bank’s current institutional and operational framework…”) by the end of the year. Secretary Yellen led the evolution charge, noting, “We do not yet have a sufficiently [...]

Read More

COP27: A Brief Account of Contemporary Climate Adaptation and Mitigation Policies, a View from the South

November 4, 2022

This year, the Conference of the Parties (COP27) will be held in in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. On the outset of this auspicious occasion, it is befitting to reflect upon contemporary climate adaptation and mitigation policies, from a southern and African point of view. Indeed, climate change is one of the stickiest policy problems of the 21st century, because it is [...]

Read More

Bridging Green Infrastructure and Finance

November 3, 2022

This chapter was originally published in CEPR's eBook "Scaling Up Sustainable Finance and Investment in the Global South" The world faces a huge shortage of infrastructure investment relative to its needs. With few exceptions, such as China, this shortage is even greater in non-advanced countries. The G20 Infrastructure Investors Dialogue estimated the volume of global infrastructure investment needed by 2040 to [...]

Read More

Partnerships for a just energy transition in the context of Africa-Europe relations: perspectives from South Africa, Nigeria and Senegal

November 1, 2022

This report presents the key messages of three African country case studies (South Africa, Nigeria, Senegal) produced under the Ukȧmȧ platform to examine emerging energy transition initiatives in Africa and the implications for Africa-Europe relations. The objectives were: 1. Explore the ways in which the Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP) narrative is unfolding in relevant African states;  2. identify the key [...]

Read More

Aligning Policy-Based Finance with the Paris Agreement

October 17, 2022

This paper discusses an approach for aligning policy-based operations (PBOs) from multilateral development banks with the goals outlined in the Paris Agreement. The Glasgow Climate Pact calls upon MDBs to accelerate the alignment of their activities with the Paris Agreement, but an approach for PBOs has not yet been determined. To be considered aligned, PBOs must promote long-term macro-fiscal stability [...]

Read More

Financing Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation in Developing Countries

October 10, 2022

The provision of international financial assistance to help developing countries undertake measures for climate change mitigation and adaptation is a fundamental element in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) under which the negotiations on climate change are being conducted. This paper attempts to quantify the scale and possible composition of international financial assistance that might be required to [...]

Read More

An Independent Review of Multilateral Development Banks’ Capital Adequacy Frameworks

October 8, 2022

In 2022, the G20 established the independent review to evaluate MDB capital adequacy. Based on the evidence, the review panel concluded that government shareholders, MDB management and credit rating agencies have overestimated the financial risks facing MDBs by underestimating their unique strengths. The panel proposes several measures to update capital adequacy policies and make more efficient use of MDB capital.

Read More

Reforming the World Bank and MDBs to Meet Shared Global Challenges

October 6, 2022

  Independent Think Tank Leaders Issue Call to Action for MDB Reform Last July, the Center for Global Development hosted a meeting with other think tanks to exchange perspectives on the multilateral development bank (MDB) system.   We shared a common diagnosis that MDBs must more aggressively address the global challenges that defy national borders and threaten human life as we [...]

Read More

Operationalize the alignment of multilateral development banks with the 2030 Agenda

October 1, 2022

This study analyzes five major multilateral development banks (MDBs) and their efforts to enhance their development impact and meet the needs of partner countries around the world in alignment with the 2030 Agenda. To support ongoing discussions on the need to rethink the role of MDBs, the Study aims to provide MDB shareholders, their staff and development and finance experts with [...]

Read More

Multilateralism and Multipolarity

September 22, 2022

This paper gathers the Program’s main reflections on the state of the multilateral system, and points to challenges within.

Read More

The climate agenda as the central axis of foreign policy in Latin America

August 23, 2022

The climate crisis, global in nature, demands joint and urgent actions. For Latin America to advance on this agenda, it is necessary to reflect on possible ways to strengthen a multilateral narrative in favor of a coordinated foreign policy in the region. In this sense, the project "The Climate Agenda as a Central Axis of Latin American Foreign Policy" carried out by [...]

Read More

The Sovereignty of Developing Countries: The Challenge of Foreign Aid

July 25, 2022

Foreign aid has a well-established and significant role in international relations. The role of foreign aid in the repertoire of international development programs is extensively documented, with its goal being the promotion of human and economic development. Foreign aid can be defined as “all forms of assistance that a country derives from other governments or multilateral agencies and financial institutions [...]

Read More

MDB Policy-Based Guarantees: Has Their Time Come?

July 20, 2022

Multilateral development bank policy-based guarantees (PBGs) have long been an instrument in search of demand. First introduced in 1999 at the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development to help governments access market borrowing at attractive rates, their track-record has been uneven, and their uptake limited. The multilateral development bank (MDB) business model tends to favor direct lending over non-lending products. [...]

Read More

Threats without borders: Are we apt to cope with the challenges?

June 30, 2022

In order to better analyze the various challenges that countries and multilateral organizations need to deal with, situationsthat go beyond countries’ borders, the Forte de Copacabana International Conference will present four central topics of discussion, focused on the following themes: climate change and the energy crisis; water and food security; the Covid-19 pandemic; and technological security, focused on artificial intelligence [...]

Read More

Quantitative Tightening and Capital Flows to Emerging Markets

June 24, 2022

In its May 15th meeting, the Federal Open Market Committee of the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) lifted its benchmark policy rate by 0.75% to 1.50%–1.75%, the biggest increase since 1994. The central bank also signaled an additional increase of 0.75% ahead. FOMC members also raised the median projection for the Fed funds rate to a range between 3.25% and 3.50% [...]

Read More

Climate Refugees: A Major Challenge of International Community and Africa

June 20, 2022

From socio-economic crises to the scourges of war, through natural disasters and environmental degradation, the world's history is marked by events leading to mass migration, exacerbating the phenomenon of climate refugees. Today, environmental phenomena prompt many inhabitants to choose exile in search of more stable horizons. It is essential to note that no legal text, either global or regional, considers [...]

Read More

A Bank for the World: Better Terms and Conditions for Global Public Goods

June 9, 2022

The problems facing our world today defy borders. Combatting climate change, preserving nature and biodiversity, and reducing pandemic risks are now at the top of the global agenda. These risks and those associated with global bads such as pollution, conflict, and disasters disproportionately affect the poorest and most vulnerable, and join well-established issues of accumulating physical, human, and institutional capital [...]

Read More

Replenishing Africa’s Development Fund: A Time for Ambition

May 19, 2022

The stakes are high for the African Development Fund (AfDF) as it kicks off its replenishment fundraising exercise this spring. Countries in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) are still grappling with the health and economic fallout of the COVID-19 crisis, with over 30 million of their citizens pushed into poverty since the onset of pandemic. According to the IMF, an extra $425 [...]

Read More

Energy in a World in Transition: Challenges, Opportunities and Perspectives

May 18, 2022

The Energy Transition process is complex and multifaceted, with substantial impacts on the energy industries’ business models. In order to contribute with a greater understanding of this trend, CEBRI, in partnership with BMA, organized a collection of articles that analyzes the main implications of this process, which is well positioned to be one of the major drivers of economic transformation [...]

Read More

Paving the Way for Greener Central Banks. Current Trends and Future Developments around the Globe

March 28, 2022

Climate change has quickly become one of the most pressing challenges of our society. Financial actors could play a key role in supporting and fostering a shift towards a low-carbon economy. In this context, central banks could have a primary function in both tackling climate-related risks and the ones related to the transition and, potentially, proactively redirecting resources towards green [...]

Read More

Country Platforms and Delivery of Global Public Goods

January 20, 2022

This paper discusses three potential requirements for country platforms to facilitate effective delivery of GPGs. We propose that existing country platforms be repurposed to coordinate the contribution of domestic and external stakeholders to GPG delivery efforts at the country level. For this proposed approach to be successful, an explicit link must be introduced between country-level efforts and global initiatives to [...]

Read More

All hands on deck: how to scale up multilateral financing to face the Covid-19 crisis

April 9, 2020

This article posits that it is essential to begin preparing the groundwork for stepped-up financial support to developing countries so they can best manage their response to the global crisis triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic. Key messages Multilateral development banks (MDBs) have the financial firepower to help developing countries face the impacts of the Covid-19 crisis. The major MDBs can expand lending [...]

Read More

A guide to multilateral development banks

June 28, 2018

The mandates and operations of multilateral development banks (MDBs) have evolved and expanded in recent decades. Many were created in the 1960s, during the period of decolonisation, while others came into being after the end of the Cold War to support reconstruction, development and regional integration. MDBs were called upon to step up these efforts in the pursuit of the [...]

Read More

Six recommendations for reforming multilateral development banks: an essay series

December 1, 2017

Agenda 2030 and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are now the cornerstone of global development. The commitments that must be fulfilled to achieve the SDGs are highly demanding – partly because of the scale of resources required but also because of the sheer complexity of intertwined policies and their means of implementation. Achieving the new set of goals will require a variety [...]

Read More

Providing global public goods: what role for the multilateral development banks?

April 20, 2017

There is a growing list of global challenges, from climate change and the spread of communicable diseases and antimicrobial resistance to excessive financial volatility, illicit trade, cyber-attacks, terrorism and forced migration. In some areas, the world is coming close to reaching thresholds of irreversibility, as with climate change and the loss of biodiversity. Resolving these global challenges requires effective international [...]

Read More

Six proposals to strengthen the finances of multilateral development banks

April 13, 2017

Heeding the calls of the G20 and their country shareholders in recent years, multilateral development banks (MDBs) have ramped up lending to address the impacts of the global financial crisis, reach the Sustainable Development Goals and make the sustainable infrastructure investments required to keep pace with economic growth. But like all financial institutions, MDBs can only lend a certain amount based on [...]

Read More