Delivering on Debt Relief: From IMF Gold to a New Aid Architecture

John Williamson
Brian Deese
July 20, 2005

This study brings readers up to date on the complicated and controversial subject of debt relief for the poorest countries of the world. What has actually been achieved? Has debt relief provided truly additional resources to fight poverty? How will the design and timing of the "enhanced Heavily Indebted Poor Country (HIPC) initiative" affect the development prospects of the world's poorest countries and their people? The study then moves on to address several broader policy questions: Is debt relief a step toward more efficient and equitable government spending, building better institutions, and attracting productive private investment in the poorest countries? Who pays for debt relief? Is there a case for further relief? Most important, how can the case for debt relief be sustained in a broader effort to combat poverty in the poorest countries?

Download a Chapter

  1. Introduction
  2. The HIPC Initiative: Backgrounds and Critiques
  3. The Case for More
  4. What Form of More?
  5. Deepening and Extending Debt Reduction
  6. A New Aid Architecture
  7. Conclusions
  8. Appendix A-C

What others are saying:

"A hard-headed analytical work that is sensitive to the needs of poor countries. The authors do a wonderful job of sorting their way through a confusing set of issues. Their answers are simple, compelling and powerful."Dani Rodrik, John F. Kennedy School of Government Harvard University

"[Delivering on Debt Relief] establishes a solid place for debt relief within the broader development agenda and highlights the role of the Center for Global Development in bridging the gap between campaigners and scholars in the development policy debate."Gerry Flood, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

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