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Time to Replace the Catatonic UNFCCC

September 30, 2014
Political realities provide a challenging context for climate change negotiations, including fundamental North-South differences on financial transfers and on legally binding targets. Funding is not forthcoming — the Green Climate Fund, to be disbursed to developing countries to undertake their climate actions, has yet to receive any funds. Developed countries refuse to consider making legally binding commitments to restrict emissions unless China, India and Brazil all make similar commitments. Domestic energy policy changes in the United States and the United Kingdom reveal that they are not serious about reducing emissions.

Greening Economic Growth: How Can Environmental Regulation Enhance Innovation and Competitiveness?

September 18, 2014
Paul Lanoie
A major challenge facing society is discovering new ways to grow economies without growing environmental impacts, commonly referred to as “decoupling” economic growth from environmental degradation. It is, however, a widely held belief among both economists and regulators that the adoption of environmental regulation will, by nature, impair economic growth. In this view, policies or regulations designed to improve the environmental performance of economic actors (for example, firms) will, by default, reduce the potential for economic growth — which means decoupling is not viable as a policy objective. One need look no further than the current paralysis with the international negotiations to limit greenhouse gas emissions (and decarbonize economic growth) to see the implications of this perception.

African Perspectives on Sovereign Debt Restructuring

August 19, 2014
On August 7 and 8, CIGI’s Global Economy Program co-hosted a conference with Uganda Debt Network to discuss African perspectives on sovereign debt restructuring.

Chinese Perspectives on Sovereign Debt Restructuring

July 22, 2014
During the week of July 14, CIGI’s Global Economy Program co-hosted a workshop with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing to discuss Chinese perspectives on sovereign debt restructuring. This event, which was attended by select policy makers and scholars, followed the recent IMF executive board discussion on options for reform of its lending framework. At the margin of this workshop, a trio of CIGI senior fellows held additional meetings with policy makers, analysts, academics and market participants on sovereign debt issues in Beijing and Shanghai to take stock of Chinese views on next steps in the reform of sovereign debt management.

The IMF’s Lending Framework and Sovereign Debt Restructuring

July 3, 2014
The euro area crisis precipitated large IMF loans. The Greece program in May 2010 required a change in IMF's framework for exceptional access arrangements, which was put into place following the 2001 Argentine crisis. The framework was meant to safeguard the resources of the IMF by setting out clear criteria that should be met before the Fund agreed to provide exceptionally large loans relative to a member country’s IMF quota.

The Outlook for the Euro Zone: Adjusting with Low Inflation

May 6, 2014
Low inflation remains the key risk to recovery in some advanced economies. Despite subdued price expectations, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) projects that most major advanced economies, including Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and even Japan will return to their central banks’ targets of two percent inflation by 2019.

Global Mega Trade Deals and the Impact on China

May 1, 2014
As US President Barack Obama continues his trade-focused trip to Asia this week, it is worth reflecting on the new US strategy of mega deals and what this may mean for the global trading system.

A Preview of the 2014 IMF Spring Meetings

April 7, 2014
Finance ministers and central bank governors from around the world are set to gather in Washington, DC for the IMF ministerial meetings later this week, where they will discuss three main items. This commentary outlines what topics will be deliberated and previews the main thrust of the discussions that are likely to unfold.

Banking Union: Progress Made, but the Devil Is in the Details

April 1, 2014
The March 20, 2014 agreement on the Single Resolution Mechanism (SRM) is a major step toward repairing the euro area’s financial architecture. The SRM is the second pillar of the blueprint for banking union, following agreement on the Single Supervisory Mechanism (SSM), which will take effect when the European Central Bank (ECB) takes over the supervision of systemic banks in November 2014. Both pillars are needed to align banking supervision and resolution at a central level, thus avoiding any tensions between EU-level supervision and national resolution schemes.

Data for Development: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

February 24, 2014
Governments, information and telecommunication companies, international organizations and humanitarian aid agencies are embracing data as a new tool that will revolutionize the way we address some of the world’s most serious problems, including food shortages and price volatility, financial crises, disease outbreaks and human rights violations.