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CGD Podcast

Rajesh Mirchandani, CGD senior director of communications and policy outreach, interviews development experts in this weekly podcast. The blog offers a short text summary.


What to Expect at COP21 – Podcast with Frances Seymour

Next week, nations gather in Paris for the 21st Conference of Parties (COP21) with the goal of establishing a global plan to address climate change. That includes coming to agreements about how to both reduce and adapt to climate change, how to finance those measures, and how to share accountability. That’s a pretty big goal, but my guest this week on the CGD podcast, CGD senior fellow Frances Seymour, is cautiously optimistic.

A Call for Action on De-Risking – Podcast with US Treasury Under Secretary Nathan Sheets

Recently, CGD launched a major report about how laws designed to prevent money being sent overseas to terrorists and criminals can also have unintended consequences for innocent people in developing countries.

These laws impose huge fines on financial institutions that have done business with a dodgy client – knowingly or not. To avoid the risk of these fines, banks pull out of markets they see as potentially risky. That tends to mean developing countries.

Are Anti–Money Laundering Policies Hurting Poor Countries? – Podcast with Clay Lowery and Vijaya Ramachandran

Are laws designed to prevent money laundering, terrorism-finance and sanctions violations unintentionally hurting people in poor countries? That’s the question a recent CGD Report seeks to address. Anti-money laundering/combating the finance of terrorism laws (AML/CFT) are grounded in reasonable national security concerns – to prevent the cross-border flow of funds to terror or criminal groups. Banks, if unable to identify the end-customer of an international transaction, could find themselves (unwittingly or not) in breach of these laws, and facing stiff penalties.

"Every SDG Target Needs a Form of Identification" – Podcast with Alan Gelb and Mariana Dahan

Imagine the panic and frustration you’d feel if you lost your passport or driver’s license. They are basic proofs of identity that we – in the developed world – readily use to access a huge range of services from getting on a plane, to opening a bank account, to proving our eligibility for education, to exercising our right to vote. Yet around 2 billion people – mainly in the developing world – have no legal form of identity. That includes some 650m children who have never been registered at birth.

“Our Economy Depends on Maintaining the Forests” – Podcast with Brazil’s Amazon Champion

If you want a simple explanation of why climate change is a development issue, Juliana Santiago can provide it. The head of the Amazon Fund department at Brazil’s national development bank BNDES tells me “we identified that our economy was dependent on the maintenance of the forest,” and that, with 29m people living in the Amazon, many in poverty, getting rural landowners to “understand that deforestation might be a threat to their business was part of this engagement in protecting the forest and thinking about sustainable development.”

Investing in Financial Inclusion – Podcast with Njuguna Ndung'u

With growth, development and financial inclusion high on the agenda at the recent World Bank/IMF meetings in Lima, Peru, this week's podcast looks back at an innovation that helped bring millions of people in Kenya into the financial system. Economist and former governor of the Central Bank of Kenya Njuguna Ndung'u, who is also a member of CGD's Task Force on Regulatory Standards for Financial Inclusion, discusses the changes brought to Kenyan society by the introduction of the mobile money transfer service M-Pesa.