Climate, COVID-19, and the Developing Country debt crisis

The triple COVID-19, economic, and climate crisis poses a growing challenge to debt sustainability and financing for climate action. There are growing calls to look for solutions for the three crisis together, notably through “debt-for-climate” swaps. Though not a general panacea, such proposals may represent an attractive option for both debtors and creditors. As an input into this ongoing discussion, this working paper proposes several potential broad criteria and proxy indicators as a starting point to identify countries where such debt swaps could be piloted, potentially with lessons learned to be expanded to a growing number of countries.

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