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Last month, I reported on the first public release of China's Export-Import Bank's environmental policy and suggested that China's overtures of increased transparency might present an opportunity for other donors to engage China in a more cooperative partnership. It seems the International Financial Corp. (IFC), the World Bank branch for private sector lending, is doing just that. On June 1, the IFC and China ExIm signed an MOU to engage in joint ventures that support environmentally and socially sustainable development in emerging markets. Joint investment and financing opportunities will include projects typical of China ExIm (such as construction), but will also include technical assistance for sustainable financing, energy efficiency and environmental conservation. The IFC and China ExIm are primarily targeting opportunities in Southeast Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, as well as in China itself. This partnership should be welcomed by all involved. Most obviously, emerging markets will benefit from increased resources available for sustainable investments, but equally importantly, the IFC and China will benefit greatly from mutual learning and insight into one another's practices and policies. This may help to allay Western mistrust of Chinese involvement in developing countries, provide a key arm of China's foreign lending with experience in sustainable practices, and open the door for greater understanding and further partnerships.

For more discussion about China, join us this Thursday, June 21 at 2:00 when CGD hosts David Dollar, the World Bank's Country Director for Mongolia and China for a conversation with CGD's own Lawrence MacDonald on the domestic and foreign implications of China's unprecedented economic growth.

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CGD blog posts reflect the views of the authors drawing on prior research and experience in their areas of expertise. CGD does not take institutional positions.