Grenada’s Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell met with the President of the World Bank, Mr. Jim Yong Kim during the annual World Bank and International Monetary Fund Spring meetings in DC on April 19.
Prime Minister Mitchell expressed his appreciation for the support given by the Bank for Grenada’s Home Grown Program.
The Grenadian leader also thanked the Bank for providing institutional support to the Small Sates by walking the talk and advancing an agenda that can make a tremendous difference in addressing the challenges that small states face, including climate change impacts, high levels of indebtedness and high fossil fuel prices.
Prime Minister Mitchell highlighted the increased access to predictable and affordable Public Sector Finance with the 50% increase in IDA from $50 billion to $75billion which is a major opportunity for those small states that are eligible for IDA, such as Grenada.
Dr. Mitchell proposed that the IDA for Small States be front-loaded and fast tracked with the money not being used for business as usual projects but for strategic transformative projects that can crowd-in private sector finance and investment.
The Prime Minister also pointed out that not all states are eligible for IDA and that the objective should be that by October 2018, vulnerability must be mainstreamed into the lending operations of at least one multilateral development bank.
PM indicated that additionally his vision for the Small States Forum includes a $1 billion Catalytic Fund of Funds for PPP projects for small and vulnerable states that can spur economic transformation and resilience – making the Small States Forum a platform for coordination, partnerships, financing, implementation, innovative solutions through triangular cooperation.
President Kim responded by saying that as a personal matter “he owes one” to the Prime Minister for him being President of the World Bank.
He was very receptive to Prime Minister’s vision for the Small States Forum and said that the Platform was a great idea. He committed to moving quickly on the suggestions put forward on fast tracking and front-loading the IDA, financing PPP projects and increasing private sector investment in Small States.
He also committed to continuing support to Grenada and the debt for nature swap, and the financing support for climate change and solar and wind energy.