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Sep 27, 2021

PM Appeals to UN for Index to Help SIDS Access Financing

John Briceño

Small Island Developing States (SIDS), like Belize, are often considered ineligible for international concessional financing. In his address at the United Nations General Assembly on Friday, Prime Minister John Briceño pointed out that small developing states are faced with structural vulnerabilities, and that size, geographic location, market size, and exposure to natural disasters all make them particularly vulnerable to external shocks. Climate change also poses an existential threat to many of these states. Challenges include sea-level rise and extreme weather conditions, even though SIDS is responsible for only one percent of greenhouse gas emissions. All these considered, PM Briceño urged the UN General Assembly to implement an alternative for assessing the unique vulnerabilities of SIDS when seeking concessional financing. He recommended the implementation of a Multi-Dimensional Vulnerability Index.


Prime Minister John Briceño

“The continued ineligibility of SIDs from accessing concessional finance leaves us in a vicious cycle of disaster or crisis recovery, and borrowing leading to unsustainable levels of debt. This must be disrupted. A multi-dimensional vulnerability index (MVI), is the indispensable tool for restoring rationality to access affordable financing. We there welcome the work of the UN and other developing partners, such as the Commonwealth, and the Caribbean Development Bank, in developing an MVI that does not only consider economic development, but also the inherent vulnerabilities of SIDS, scales, geography, and limited natural resources. We need to adopt an MVI now. We call upon all the international financial institutions and our developing partners to use it. There is no alternative if our countries are to embark on a sustainable economic development plan. If our multilateral system is to remain credible it must have the capacity to induce action.”

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