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PM Mottley and UN boss lead talks on solutions for indebted countries

by Barbados Today
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Prime Minister Mia Mottley and United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres have joined forces under the Bridgetown Initiative to help find solutions to address the immediate needs of countries facing debt distress and liquidity challenges.
At a meeting convened at the UN Headquarters in New York on Wednesday, they proposed a large-scale Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Stimulus while reiterating the need for reform of the international financial architecture.
“The world is running out of time to fix its international financial system that is broken, outdated, infested with short-termism, and downright unfair. Too many countries are being prevented from fighting the climate crisis and from creating decent opportunities for billions of people – their citizens,” Mottley said.
“If countries cannot access the finance they need at rates they can afford, the world will lose the battle, not simply the countries. What is good for the North is good for the South, East and West! This is the best development strategy for the people of the developing world. This is the best development strategy for the planet,” she added.
According to the 2023 Financing for Sustainable Development Report, 52 low- and middle-income developing economies are either in debt distress or at high risk of debt distress, accounting for more than 40 per cent of the world’s poorest people.
“The international financial architecture is short-sighted, crisis-prone, and bears no relation to the economic reality of today,” Guterres asserted.
The meeting proposed six key action areas designed to leverage concrete steps to support all developing countries. They include providing immediate liquidity support, including re-channelling at least US$100 billion of unused Special Drawing Rights through the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and multilateral development banks; restoring debt sustainability in the immediate and long-term; supporting countries in restructuring debt with long-term low-interest rates; and dramatically increasing official sector development lending to reach US$500 billion annual stimulus for investment in the SDG Stimulus.
(BT/PR)

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