International Monetary Fund,World Bank,AIIB, ADB and India

International Monetary Fund,World Bank,AIIB, ADB and India

World Economic Forum (WEF) Summit at Davos


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: World Economic Forum (WEF)

Mains level: Read the attached story


  • The World Economic Forum (WEF) has begun its annual summit in Davos, Switzerland.

World Economic Forum (WEF)

  • Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, WEF is an international not-for-profit organization, focused on bringing the public and private sectors together to address the global political, social, and economic issues.
  • It was founded in 1971 by Swiss-German economist and Professor Klaus Schwab in a bid to promote global cooperation on these most pressing problems.
  • The first meeting of WEF was held more than five decades ago in Davos, which has been the home of the annual gathering almost ever since, also becoming the shorthand for the event.

Purpose and Essence of the WEF

  • Bringing Stakeholders Together: The WEF gathers leaders from business, government, and civil society to address global challenges and brainstorm solutions.
  • Scope Expansion: Initially focusing on European firms catching up with US management practices, the WEF’s scope broadened to encompass economic and social issues.

Annual Meeting in Davos

  • Membership: In 1975, the WEF introduced a membership system for the world’s top 1,000 companies.
  • Global Diplomacy: Davos serves as a backdrop for international diplomacy, offering leaders a conducive environment to defuse tensions and engage in critical discussions.
  • Historic Meetings: Notable meetings in Davos have included North and South Korea’s first ministerial-level talks and discussions on German reunification.
  • Birth of the G20: The idea for the G20, comprising 20 countries and initially focusing on global finance, emerged from discussions at the WEF in 1998.

Funding and Davos’s Serene Environment

  • WEF Funding: The WEF is primarily funded by partnering corporations, typically global enterprises with annual turnover exceeding $5 billion.
  • Davos Setting: Davos’s tranquil surroundings provide an ideal backdrop for the WEF’s mission to foster a more prosperous global economy.

Beyond Discussions: WEF’s Impact

  • Global Rankings: The WEF publishes influential global rankings and indices, such as the Global Competitiveness Report and the Global Gender Gap Report.
  • Significance: WEF Summit serves as a dynamic platform where leaders and stakeholders converge to address pressing global issues, fostering cooperation and innovation on a grand scale.

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International Monetary Fund,World Bank,AIIB, ADB and India

World Bank sets up task force for MDB Reform Plan


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: World Bank

Mains level: Not Much

Central Idea

About World Bank

Establishment July 1944, during the United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference at Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, USA.
Initial Purpose To help rebuild European nations devastated by World War II;

Later expanded to include global development and poverty reduction.

Components – International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD)

– International Development Association (IDA)

– International Finance Corporation (IFC)

– Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA)

– International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID)

Membership 189 member countries as of 2021.
Headquarters Washington, D.C., United States.
Main Functions Provides loans, credits, and grants; offers technical expertise and policy advice; researches development issues.
Funding Through issuance of bonds in the international financial markets and earnings from its investments.
Governance Led by a President, with a Board of Governors and a Board of Executive Directors.
India’s Involvement – Founding member since 1944.

– First loan approved in 1949 for Indian Railways.


Understanding Multilateral Development Banks

  • Definition and Membership: MDBs are financial institutions with multiple country members, both developed and developing, that provide financing and technical assistance for development projects.
  • Operational Focus: Their operations span various sectors, including transport, energy, and urban infrastructure, with developed countries contributing to the lending pool and developing countries primarily borrowing for development projects.

Rationale behind Proposed Reforms

  • Addressing Global Challenges: The climate crisis and other global issues require mechanisms for global-scale action, particularly in emerging markets and developing economies (EMDEs).
  • Aligning with National Priorities: The expert group recommends that MDBs align more closely with the developmental priorities of individual nations.
  • Enhancing Private Sector Engagement: A shift is suggested towards greater private sector involvement in MDB operations, moving away from the culture of limited interaction between private and sovereign financing arms.

Key Aspects of the Proposed Reforms

  • Coordination and Stakeholder Involvement: The panel emphasizes the need for greater coordination among stakeholders, including national governments, to develop unified goals and policies.
  • Addressing Coordination Failures: The reforms aim to resolve multiple coordination failures among domestic and international stakeholders, both public and private.
  • Changing Perception and Practices: The current perception of MDBs as bureaucratic and risk-averse is seen as a barrier to private sector involvement, which is crucial for ramping up financing.

MDBs’ Traditional Lending in Countries like India

  • Role in India’s Development: MDBs have been instrumental in financing key infrastructure projects in India, often with longer gestation periods.
  • World Bank’s Commitments: Since its establishment in 1944, the World Bank has committed $97.6 billion to India, with significant portions in public administration, agriculture, and transport.
  • Asian Development Bank’s Involvement: Formed in 1969, the ADB has committed $59.7 billion to India, focusing on transport, energy, and urban infrastructure.
  • Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank’s Financing: The AIIB, established in 2016, has approved $9.9 billion in financing for India, with a focus on transport, energy, and economic resilience.
  • European Investment Bank’s Contributions: Since 1958, the EIB has committed Euro 4.5 billion to India, primarily in the transport and energy sectors.


  • Implications of the Recommendations: The proposed shift in MDB operations could lead to more effective and targeted development financing, aligning closely with the specific needs and priorities of individual countries.
  • Potential for Enhanced Global Impact: By addressing coordination challenges and increasing private sector engagement, MDBs could play a pivotal role in meeting global development goals and addressing critical challenges like the climate crisis.

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International Monetary Fund,World Bank,AIIB, ADB and India

Multilateral Development Banks: A Call for Reform


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: MDBs

Mains level: MDBs and Their Traditional Roles, challenges and call for reforms

What’s the news?

  • A G20 expert panel on strengthening multilateral development banks (MDBs) suggests a paradigm shift.

Central idea

  • Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) play a pivotal role in financing and fostering sustainable development globally. However, a G20 expert panel has proposed significant reforms aimed at making MDBs more effective and adaptive to the evolving challenges of our time.

Key Takeaways

  • MDBs should align their financial and analytical operations to assist national governments in setting up platforms for prioritized sustainable development goals (SDGs).
  • The emphasis is on goals that demonstrate the commitment of country leadership and significant national investment.

What are Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs)?

  • MDBs are international institutions consisting of multiple developed and developing countries.
  • Role:
  • Facilitate developmental objectives.
  • Offer financial and technical assistance across sectors like transport, energy, and urban infrastructure.
  • Major contributions to the lending pool from developed nations, while developing nations largely borrow for developmental projects.

The need for reform within MDBs

  • Addressing the Climate Crisis: The expert group cites global challenges such as the climate crisis. There’s knowledge of mitigation measures but a lack of global mechanisms, particularly in emerging markets and developing economies (EMDEs).
  • In Sync with National Priorities: MDBs should resonate with individual nations’ developmental priorities.
  • Engaging the Private Sector: The call is to integrate the private sector more closely into MDB operations. Breaking past limited interactions between private and sovereign financing will be key.
  • Coordinated Effort: Greater synchrony among stakeholders is essential for MDB success. The expert group seeks more involvement from national governments to create a unified vision encompassing goals, policies, investments, and financing.
  • Changing MDB Perceptions: Currently, MDBs’ bureaucratic and risk-averse nature might deter private sector engagement. Given the MDBs’ goal to enhance financing to $390 billion by 2030, the private sector’s involvement is crucial.

MDBs and Their Traditional Role in India

  • World Bank: Established in 1944, the World Bank’s commitment in India totals $97.6 billion. It has supported sectors including public administration (19%), agriculture (15%), and transport (11%).
  • Asian Development Bank (ADB): ADB, set up in 1969, has pledged assistance worth $59.7 billion in India. Notably, $20.2 billion (34%) has been for transport, $15 billion (25%) for energy, and $6.7 billion (10%) for urban infrastructure.
  • Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB): Founded in 2016, AIIB has approved $9.9 billion for India. Transport (42%), energy (14%), and economic resilience (12.6%) are key sectors.
  • European Investment Bank: Established in 1958, it has sanctioned 22 projects in India, totaling Euro 4.5 billion. The focus has been on transport (Euro 2.45 billion) and energy (Euro 1.5 billion).


  • The expert group’s recommendations bring to the forefront the pressing need to recalibrate MDBs’ functions and enhance their impact. Aligning with national priorities, ensuring broader stakeholder coordination, and actively involving the private sector can transform the developmental landscape and address global challenges more effectively.

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International Monetary Fund,World Bank,AIIB, ADB and India

Pak gets a $3 bn IMF Package


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: IMF Bailout Packages

Mains level: Pakistan's prospected economic default and collapse

imf pakistan

Central Idea

IMF and its Bailout

  • The IMF is an international organization that provides loans, technical assistance, and policy advice to member countries.
  • Established in 1944 to promote international monetary cooperation, exchange rate stability, balanced economic growth, and poverty reduction.
  • Headquarters located in Washington, D.C., and it has 190 member countries.
  • An IMF bailout, also known as an IMF program, is a loan package provided to financially troubled countries.
  • Bailout programs have specific terms and conditions that borrowing countries must meet to access the funds.

Types of IMF Bailout Packages

Description Duration Conditionality
Stand-by Arrangements Short-term lending programs for countries with temporary balance of payments problems. 1-2 years Specific macroeconomic policies for stabilization
Extended Fund Facility Medium-term lending programs to address balance of payments difficulties from structural weaknesses. Longer-term Extensive conditionality and significant reforms
Rapid Financing Instrument Loan program providing quick financing for countries with urgent balance of payments needs. Flexible Fewer conditions and shorter application process


Quick recap: Pakistan Economic Crisis


  • The 2022-2023 economic crisis in Pakistan coincides with political unrest in the country.
  • Rising food, gas, and oil prices have aggravated the economic challenges faced by Pakistan.
  • The IMF’s decision to halt disbursement of funds under the 2019 Extended Fund Facility (EFF) program exacerbated the financial crisis.

Causes of the Economic Crisis

  • Impact of the Russian invasion of Ukraine: Worldwide fuel price hike affecting Pakistan’s import-dependent economy.
  • Excessive external borrowings: Raised concerns of default, leading to currency depreciation and expensive imports.
  • High inflation and food prices: By June 2022, inflation reached record levels, adding pressure on the economy.
  • Poor governance and low productivity: Contributing factors to the balance of payment crisis and insufficient foreign exchange earnings.

Impact on the Pakistani Economy

  • Balance of payment crisis: Inability to generate enough foreign exchange to cover import expenses.
  • Currency depreciation: Weakening of the Pakistani rupee against major currencies, further exacerbating import costs.
  • Rising inflation: Placing a burden on the population, particularly with escalating food prices.
  • Economic instability: The crisis is considered the most significant since Pakistan’s independence.

What’s’ the new SBA Deal?

  • Electricity subsidies: The agreement calls for the discontinuation of historically heavy subsidies in the power sector. There will be a timely rebasing of power tariffs to ensure cost recovery, which may lead to inevitable price hikes for consumers.
  • Import restrictions and exchange rate: Pakistan’s central bank will be required to remove import restrictions and adopt a fully market-determined exchange rate, aligning with the IMF’s directive.
  • Inflation control measures: The IMF emphasizes the need for the central bank to be proactive in curbing inflation, especially its impact on vulnerable segments of society. This may involve further interest rate hikes.
  • Fiscal discipline: The Pakistani authorities are urged to resist pressures for unbudgeted spending or tax exemptions, ensuring responsible fiscal management.

Obligations laid on Pakistan

  • The $3 billion IMF support is part of the overall financial aid required to address Pakistan’s external payment obligations.
  • Pakistan will continue to seek additional multilateral and bilateral assistance to meet its financial commitments.
  • Support from countries such as the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and China is expected, further contributing to Pakistan’s financial stability.

Reaction to the Deal

  • The response from analysts and economists has been mixed, with some expressing optimism that the agreement will restore investor confidence in Pakistan’s economy.
  • However, there are concerns regarding the government’s ability to adhere to the rigorous conditions imposed by the IMF.


  • The IMF deal provides a temporary respite and financial support to address Pakistan’s economic challenges.
  • However, the successful implementation of the agreement and the long-term stability of Pakistan’s economy will require sustained efforts, adherence to conditions, and comprehensive structural reforms.

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International Monetary Fund,World Bank,AIIB, ADB and India

Understanding IMF Bailouts and their drawbacks


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: IMF bailout mechanism

Mains level: Read the attached story


Central idea: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) last week confirmed a $3 billion bailout plan for Sri Lanka’s struggling economy. However, Pakistan failed to get a penny. Countries seek help from the IMF usually when their economies face a major macroeconomic risk, mostly in the form of a currency crisis.

International Monetary Fund (IMF)

  • IMF is an international organization that provides loans, technical assistance, and policy advice to its member countries.
  • It was established in 1944 with the goal of promoting international monetary cooperation and exchange rate stability, facilitating balanced economic growth, and reducing poverty around the world.
  • It has 190 member countries, and its headquarters is located in Washington, D.C.
  • Its main function is to provide financial assistance to countries facing economic difficulties, such as the balance of payments problems, currency crises, and high levels of debt.
  • It also provides technical assistance and policy advice to help countries improve their economic policies and institutions, and to promote economic stability and growth.

Governing of IMF

  • The IMF is governed by its Board of Governors, which consists of one governor and one alternate governor from each member country.
  • The day-to-day operations of the IMF are managed by its Executive Board, which is responsible for making decisions on financial assistance and policy advice.


What is an IMF Bailout?

  • An IMF bailout, also known as an IMF program, is a loan package provided by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to financially troubled countries.
  • These loan packages come with specific terms and conditions that the borrowing country must meet to access the funds.
  • They typically have a set of conditions that a country must meet to qualify for the loan package.
  • These conditions, also known as “conditionalities,” typically include measures that promote fiscal discipline, monetary stability, and structural reforms to improve the country’s economic competitiveness.

IMF programs are often seen as a last resort for countries facing financial crises, and they are only granted if a country cannot access capital markets on its own. IMF programs can be classified into three main types:

  1. Stand-by Arrangements: They are short-term lending programs designed to provide financial assistance to countries experiencing short-term balance of payments problems. These programs typically last for one to two years and require countries to implement specific macroeconomic policies to stabilize their economies.
  2. Extended Fund Facility: Such programs are medium-term lending programs designed to help countries with balance of payments difficulties resulting from structural weaknesses. These programs are typically longer-term and come with more extensive policy conditionality, which requires more significant structural reforms to the country’s economy.
  3. Rapid Financing Instrument: It is a loan program designed to provide quick financing to countries facing an urgent balance of payments need. The program is designed to be more flexible than other IMF programs, with fewer conditions and a shorter application process.

Why do countries seek IMF bailouts?

  • Countries need IMF bailout when their economies face major macroeconomic risks, such as a currency crisis, due to gross mismanagement of the nation’s currency by the central bank under the covert influence of the ruling government.
  • Such currency crises cause a rapid rise in the overall money supply, which causes prices to rise across the economy and the exchange value of the currency to drop.
  • Bad luck such as a decrease in foreign tourists can also contribute to a crisis in a country like Sri Lanka.

Benefits provided by IMF bailout:

IMF programs provide several benefits to countries in financial distress. For instance:

  • Access to funding: An IMF bailout provides immediate funding to a country experiencing a financial crisis, allowing it to meet its immediate financial obligations.
  • Credibility push: A bailout can provide credibility to a country’s economic policies, signalling to international investors that the country is taking the necessary steps to restore its economy.
  • Assistance with structural reforms: IMF programs require countries to implement structural reforms that can help address the underlying problems that led to the financial crisis, improving the country’s long-term economic prospects.

Limitations of an IMF bailout

  • Harsh austerity measures: IMF programs often require countries to implement strict economic policies, which can be unpopular and difficult to implement.
  • Limited resources: The IMF has limited resources, which can limit the amount of assistance it can provide to countries in need.
  • Stigmatization: Bailout can stigmatize a country in the eyes of international investors, signaling that the country is unable to manage its own economy without outside assistance.

Try this PYQ from CSP 2022

“Rapid Financing Instrument” and “Rapid Credit Facility” are related to the provisions of lending by which one of the following?

(a) Asian Development Bank

(b) International Monetary Fund

(c) United National Environment Programme Finance Initiative

(d) Word Bank


Post your answers here.
Please leave a feedback on thisx


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International Monetary Fund,World Bank,AIIB, ADB and India

Issues faced by World Bank and IMF


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Bretton Wood Twins

Mains level: Transparency issues is International Organizations

This article discusses some inherent issues with the international organizations (IOs) i.e., the World Bank (Bank) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) (aka Bretton Woods Twins). This comes in the backyard of the WB decision to scrap its flagship publication, the ‘Doing Business’ report.

Issue over chair: A monopoly of the West

  • Common individuals to head: The individuals which are common to them: Paul Wolfowitz, Jim-Kim, David Malpass, Rodrigo Rato, Dominique-Strauss Kahn, Christine Lagarde, and Kristalina Georgieva.
  • Monopoly of US/EU: They have all become heads via a dual monopoly selection procedure: Only an American can head the Bank and only a European can head the IMF.
  • Personal integrity: This has been called into question, the most recent being the revelations of malfeasance at the World Bank where data was apparently massaged to make at least two major countries — China and Saudi Arabia— look better than they would otherwise have been.

Issues with these heads: Hypocrisy

  • Political accountability: Within countries, we expect reasonable standards of integrity from heads of important institutions, and democratic political accountability mechanisms exist to ensure that.
  • Probity: The effectiveness and legitimacy of these individuals and indeed of the international institutions they head require personal qualities of probity.
  • Non-virtuous preachers: These heads often go around the developing world, preaching the virtues of good governance, from arguing against the scourge of corruption to improving data integrity.
  • Undue parameters: There are even World Bank indices to rank countries on those metrics.

How has this impacted these institutions?

Ans. The credibility of the institutions is lost.

  • It is not just the charge of hypocrisy, but also the effect on the morale and motivation of the staff of these institutions.
  • Many of them chose to work here because of a commitment to public service.
  • The recent letter by more than 300 former World Bank staff, expressing their anguish at the recent revelations on the Doing Business index, captures this sentiment.

Why such issues grapple these institutions?

  • Goal definition: International institutions operate in a grey zone of neither clearly being in or outside the realm of formal politics and hence have weaker mechanisms of accountability.
  • Selection of heads: The selection procedure for choosing heads of the Bank and the Fund has been a dismal failure. Compromised heads are potentially more biased.
  • Indoctrination: Contrast this with the growing alarm and anxiety that characterizes the rise of China and its attempts to place its own nationals in existing IOs as well as creating new ones.

Chinese has intruded even into these

  • Countries place their nationals to head these institutions, both for prestige and to pursue their national interests.
  • China has its own nationals now head four of the 15 UN specialized agencies (it suffered a rare setback to head the World Intellectual Property Organisation last year).


  • The contest between the West (and especially the US) and China to shape the global order is becoming manifest.
  • China’s efforts, its success, and more broadly its influence in IOs should certainly raise deep concerns, most notably the suppression of the inquiry into the origins of the coronavirus.
  • Looking ahead, if the US and Europe do not hold themselves to the standards they exhort to the rest of the world, their credibility and legitimacy will continue to degrade.
  • This will cede ground and soft power to geopolitical rivals.

Way forward

  • So, global political leaders convening next week for the annual meetings of the Bank and Fund must act with urgency and conviction to stem the rot.
  • They must open the selection of the heads of these institutions to the best candidate, regardless of nationality.
  • And to pave the way, they should clear up the current mess over the Doing Business saga.


International Org. | Part 7 | Bretton Woods Institutions – World Bank Group


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International Monetary Fund,World Bank,AIIB, ADB and India

SDR general allocation by IMF


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: SDR mechanism

Mains level: Issues with SDR mechanism

  • Finance Minister has said that India could not support a general allocation of new Special Drawing Rights (SDR) by the IMF because it might not be effective in easing coronavirus-driven financial pressures.
  • FM Nirmala Sitharaman has stated that such a global liquidity boost by the IMF could produce potentially costly side-effects if countries used the funds for “extraneous” purposes.

Details of SDR mechanism:

What is SDR?

  • The SDR is an interest-bearing international reserve asset created by the IMF in 1969 to supplement other reserve assets of member countries.
  • To participate in this system, a country was required to have official reserves.
  • This consisted of a central bank or government reserves of gold and globally accepted foreign currencies that could be used to buy the local currency.
  • It is based on a basket of international currencies comprising the U.S. dollar, Japanese yen, euro, pound sterling and Chinese Renminbi.
  • It is not a currency, nor a claim on the IMF, but is potentially a claim on freely usable currencies of IMF members.
  • The value of the SDR is not directly determined by supply and demand in the market but is set daily by the IMF on the basis of market exchange rates between the currencies included in the SDR basket.

Who can hold SDRs?

  • SDRs can be held and used by member countries, the IMF, and certain designated official entities called “prescribed holders”.
  • It cannot be held, for example, by private entities or individuals.
  • Its status as a reserve asset derives from the commitments of members to hold, accept, and honour obligations denominated in SDR.
  • The SDR also serves as the unit of account of the IMF and some other international organizations.

General allocation of SDRs

  • An SDR allocation is a low-cost way of adding to members’ international reserves, allowing members to reduce their reliance on more expensive domestic or external debt for building reserves.
  • The IMF has the authority under its Articles of Agreement to create unconditional liquidity through “general allocations” of SDRs to participants in its SDR Department (currently, all members of the IMF) in proportion to their quotas in the IMF.

The SDR Interest Rate

  • The interest rate on SDRs, or the SDRi, provides the basis for calculating the interest rate that is charged to member countries when they borrow from the IMF and paid to members for their remunerated creditor positions in the IMF.
  • It is also the interest paid to member countries on their own SDR holdings and charged on their SDR allocation.
  • The SDRi is determined weekly based on a weighted average of representative interest rates on short-term government debt instruments in the money markets of the SDR basket currencies, with a floor of five basis points.

How many SDRs have been allocated so far?

The general SDR allocation of August 28, 2009 is by far the biggest allocation to date:

  • SDR 9.3 billion was allocated in yearly installments in 1970–72.
  • SDR 12.1 billion was allocated in yearly installments in 1979–81.
  • SDR 161.2 billion was allocated on August 28, 2009.

What happens to the SDRs once they are allocated?

  • The IMF’s SDR Department keeps records of members’ SDR allocations and holdings; the SDR Department is also the channel through which all transactions and operations involving SDRs are conducted.
  • Once allocated, members can hold their SDRs as part of their international reserves or sell part or all of their SDR allocations.
  • Members can exchange SDRs for freely usable currencies among themselves and with prescribed holders; such exchange can take place under a voluntary arrangement or under designation by the Fund.
  • IMF members can also use SDRs in operations and transactions involving the IMF, such as the payment of interest on and repayment of loans, or payment for future quota increases.

Issues with new allocations

  • New reserves are allocated according to members’ quotas — or shares in the IMF.
  • A great deal of the benefit in 2009 went to advanced economies that didn’t need help in accessing markets or financing fiscal deficits.
  • If the same system is being used now, only 40 per cent of the total would be given to the emerging economies. That is not good enough.

Other reasons

  • The possible extraneous purposes FM could be referring to maybe misuse of resources for terror funding or some such purpose by neighbours.
  • This may seem far-fetched to some, but is par for the course for the government.
  • The other possibility is that India is merely trying to prove its loyalty to the Trump administration.
  • India has already requested to access the US Fed’s currency swaps.

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