Development Finance in Times of Multiple Crises

Event Type
Online Panel Discussion

Online, 13.03.2024


German Institute of Development and Sustainability (IDOS)

Development finance faces a range of challenges in times of multiple crises. On this background, upcoming summits and forums should provide opportunities to enable progress.

On 13 March, the IDOS finance team hosted an online event titled „Development Finance in Times of Multiple Crises„. Moderated by Christoph Sommer (IDOS), the event opened with remarks by Niels Schuett (Head of Division, BMZ) and IDOS Director Prof. Anna-Katharina Hornidge. Dr Yabibal Walle (IDOS) then set the stage for the discussion by briefly presenting the finance team’s recent discussion paper „Development Finance at a Turning Point: Implications and Policy Recommendations“. The panel included Rishikesh Ram Bhandary (Boston University), Penelope Hawkins (UNCTAD), Peter Chowla (UN Financing for Sustainable Development), Prof. Ashenafi Beyene Fanta (Stellenbosch University) and Dr Kathrin Berensmann (IDOS), engaging an audience of up to 92 participants worldwide.

As expected, there was a common recognition by the panellists of the daunting challenges facing development finance in the midst of the multiple crises of our time, including climate change, the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s war in Ukraine. Speakers discussed a range of critical issues, from addressing the debt crises to advocating for reform of the Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs), and from managing foreign exchange and political risks in developing countries to the reallocation of Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) through the MDBs. The panellists also emphasised the indispensable role of (currently insufficient) trust in multilateral systems as the key to effectively addressing the unprecedented global challenges of our time.

Panellists were also asked about their expectations and aspirations for upcoming summits and forums, including the Spring/Annual Meetings, the Financing for Development Forum, COP29 and the Hamburg Sustainability Conference (HSC). Among other things, they stressed that while major breakthroughs on all fronts may be unrealistic, each summit should provide an opportunity to make significant progress in key areas while maintaining momentum for progress in others.

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