The release of the joint statement “From Billions to Trillions: Transforming Development Finance” at our Spring Meetings is one of the most satisfying moments during my two-year tenure as Managing Director and World Bank Group CFO.
My one regret is that the title should have been Billions for Trillions.
Financing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will require everyone to make the best use of each dollar from every source, and to draw in and increase public and private investment. The SDGs are ambitious and demand equal ambition in using the “billions” of dollars in current flows of Official Development Assistance (ODA) and all available resources to attract, leverage and mobilize “trillions” in investments of all kinds —public and private, national and global.
The traditional foundation of ODA, estimated at US$135 billion a year, provides a fundamental source of financing, especially in the poorest and most fragile countries. But more is needed. Investment needs in infrastructure alone could reach up to $1.5 trillion a year in emerging and developing countries.