The IDB assembly, which culminates this Sunday the 19th, began on Thursday with debates by officials, businessmen and experts on the fight against poverty and climate change. The event is led by the new president of the Inter-American Development Bank, the Brazilian-Israeli Ilan Goldfajn. The official announced that its objective is “establish an Amazon regional project, a general framework for ambitious and intersectoral interventions that have a lasting impact in the Amazon region»
Those responsible for the finances of the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean are meeting this Saturday, March 18, in Panama at the annual conclave of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), after a black week for the banking system of the United States and Europe.
The new president of the IDB, the Brazilian-Israeli Ilan Goldfajn, will deliver a speech before the governors of the 48 member countries of the Bank, mostly finance ministers, who will then meet behind closed doors.
The IDB assembly, which ends on Sunday, began on Thursday with debates by officials, businessmen and experts on the fight against poverty and climate change, amid concerns over the bankruptcy of three banks in the United States, including Silicon Valley Bank. , as well as difficulties in the US First Republic and Swiss Credit Suisse, whose shares have plummeted.
In these forums, which continued on Friday, the storms in the banking system of the United States and Europe were not addressed, but Goldfajn anticipated that “cyclical” issues will be addressed by the IDB governors in their deliberations behind closed doors.
There is concern that this turmoil could affect Latin America and the Caribbean, as the collapse of three banks in less than a week in the United States marks the worst bankruptcies since the 2008 financial crisis.
“You have to be vigilant because in the financial markets contagion can be very fast,” Chilean Finance Minister Mario Marcel told AFP.
«Market reactions can reach our countries. In fact the price of raw materials these days have been falling and lowering raw materials weakens our own currencies, “he added.
Marcel explained that “to the extent that the interventions of the central banks are effective, this can be changed, but as long as other types of complex situations do not appear.”
“Amazon regional project”
Goldfajn and Latin American and Caribbean ministers, as well as non-regional Bank delegates (there are several from European countries), have held bilateral or group meetings to discuss cooperation and other issues.
In addition, Goldfajn led a meeting with ministers from Amazonian countries and donors to seek ways to finance conservation programs in one of the largest lungs on the planet.
“It is time to increase ambition, to the level required by the Amazon,” said the IDB helmsman at this meeting, according to an IDB statement.
“Our goal is to establish an Amazon regional project, a general framework for ambitious and intersectoral interventions that have a lasting impact in the Amazon region,” he added.
Goldfajn, who has insisted in Panama that action at the national level is not enough to protect the environment, promised to “promote regional integration to improve coordination and coherence” to protect a forest that “extends eight countries and its conservation affects the entire planet.”
He also promised support for investments and policies “to close the connectivity gap, promote business and ensure inclusion” in the Amazon, as well as “lead a close dialogue with indigenous peoples, local and Afro-descendant communities.”
“We have to collaborate with all the neighboring countries, acting as a regional integrator for the Amazon, and we trust the IDB for that,” said the Minister of Planning and Budget of Brazil and IDB Governor, Simone Tebet, quoted in the notice.
The IDB, created in 1959 and headquartered in Washington, is one of the main sources of long-term financing for the region and within the framework of this assembly some countries signed credit contracts with the Bank.
Chile signed a loan for 1,000 million dollars for loans to small and medium-sized companies, and Honduras another for 75 million dollars for anti-poverty programs.
*Also read: Satellite data indicates that deforestation disappeared “Costa Rica” from the Amazon
In a forum on climate change, the head of Finance of Uruguay, Azucena Arbeleche, suggested on Friday that the interest rate charged for loans by multilateral financial organizations, such as the IDB or the World Bank, be “linked to the environmental behavior of countries”.
“That countries that contribute to a global public good such as the environment be rewarded,” said Arbeleche.
At the IDB meeting is the candidate appointed by the US president, Joe Biden, to lead the World Bank, Ajay Banga, who comes from a tour of nations in Africa and Europe.
Traditionally, the candidate nominated by Washington becomes the new president of the World Bank.
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