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Development, Untied: Unleashing the catalytic power of Official Development Assistance through renewed action on untying

In 2015 alone, donor governments around the world spent around US$55 billion – or more than 44 per cent of Real Official Development Assistance (ODA) – on the procurement of goods and services. Such high budgets have the potential to catalyse far-reaching change in the global south. ODA procurement can build local supply chains for essential goods such as foods and medicines; it can incentivise local companies to act in equitable, socially responsible and environmentally sensitive ways; and it can start a chain reaction of local economic growth by getting vital cash into the hands of small businesses in the global south.

Source: eurodad.org

Argentina: 20 Years on, Has the IMF Really Changed Its Ways?

Argentinians are experiencing deja-vu this month as the government announces massive layoffs and a hiring freeze as part of an adjustment package attached to a loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Thousands of public servants are being forced yet again to swallow the bitter pill of austerity, which the IMF programme – published last Friday – aims to patch up through increased targeted social assistance.

Source: triplecrisis.com

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Development, untied

In 2015 alone, donor governments around the world spent an estimated US$55 billion – or more than 44 per cent of Real Official Development Assistance (ODA) – on the procurement of goods and services. Such high budgets have the potential to catalyse far-reaching change in the global south. However, ‘tied’ ODA procurement, which requires goods and services to be sourced from companies in the donor country, puts the commercial priorities of firms based in rich countries before development impact. This report by Eurodad is calls for a series of key steps and recommendations for bilateral and multilateral donors as well as for international decision-making bodies.

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Global Landscape of Climate Finance 2017

Climate Policy Initiative’s 2017 edition of the Global Landscape of Climate Finance updates the most comprehensive assessment of annual climate fnance flows with data from 2015 and 2016, providing, for the frst time, a fve-year trend analysis on the how, where, and from whom fnance is flowing toward low-carbon and climate-resilient actions globally in order to identify trends, gaps, and opportunities to scale up investment. As with previous reports, the fgures identifed in this Landscape represent overall global fnance flows and should be compared with estimates of total investment needed consistent with the goal of limiting global temperature rise to below 2 degrees Celsius.

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Financing renewable energy: Who is financing what and why it matters

Financing renewable energy: Who is financing what and why it matters (by Mariana Mazzucato, Gregor Semieniuk). Successful financing of innovation in renewable energy (RE) requires a better understanding of the relationship between different types of finance and their willingness to invest in RE. We study the ‘direction’ of innovation that financial actors create. Focusing on the deployment phase of innovation, we use Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) data to construct a global dataset of RE asset finance flows from 2004 to 2014. We analyze the asset portfolios of different RE technologies financed by different financial actors according to their size, skew and level of risk. We use entropy-based indices to measure skew, and construct a heuristic index of risk that varies with the technology, time, and country of investment to measure risk. We start by comparing the behavior of private and public types of finance and then disaggregate further along 11 different financial actors (e.g. private banks, public banks, and utilities) and 11 types of RE technologies that are invested in (e.g. different kinds of power generation from solar radiation, wind or biomass). Financial actors vary considerably in the composition of their investment portfolio, creating directions towards particular technologies. Public financial actors invest in portfolios with higher risk technologies, also creating a direction; they also increased their share in total investment dramatically over time. We use these preliminary results to formulate new research questions about how finance affects the directionality of innovation, and the implications for RE policies

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Crisis Narratives, Debt and Development Adjustment in the Caribbean

Don Marshall presents elements of his paper “Crisis Narratives, Debt and Development Adjustment: Contemplating Caribbean Small Island States Futures.” Don, Director of the Sir Arthur Lewis Institute of Social and Economic Studies at University of the West Indies: Cave Hill, questions the hegemony of mainstream economic indicators shepherded by the “neoliberal calculus of austerity adjustments.” He explores the effects on the Caribbean and its economic governance of international financial institutions and credit rating agencies, in the context of global financialization. Considering the implications for the dual Caribbean crises of debt and climate change, Don illustrates the need for meaningful policy space to enable governments to implement their agendas for equitable development.

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