Paris finance summit makes minimal progress on debt

Reacting to the outcome of the Summit for a new Global Financial Pact in Paris, IIED executive director Tom Mitchell said:

Press release, 23 June 2023

“Moving towards an international development tax is a game-changer for people in the poorest countries already losing their lives and livelihoods to climate change. But this will take time to implement.

“What’s disappointing is the absence of decisive action on debt – beyond pause clauses, which aren’t always useful – that could have helped climate-vulnerable countries much sooner. Each highly-indebted nation will need a tailored solution that might include debt swaps, disaster insurance and even cancellation.

“Despite their big talk before the summit, global North leaders have displayed a lack of appetite to tackle the underlying debt crisis or to significantly reform international finance, which are both putting the brakes on action to address climate change.

“There has been some real ambition here, but progress and concrete outcomes are needed urgently.”

Notes to editors

New IIED analysis this week revealed how the world’s poorest countries are paying billions more to service debt than they are receiving in financial help to beat climate change.

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