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IMF: $100 Billion Raised to Fight Climate, Poverty

FILE: Family members after their home was flooded during heavy rain, in Antananarivo, Madagascar, Monday, Jan. 24, 2022. Devastating floods as well as other extreme weather events across the continent are linked to human-caused climate change according to experts.

PARIS — The head of the International Monetary Fund, Kristalina Georgieva, said Thursday that rich countries had met a target of reallocating $100 billion of funds from the institution to battle climate change and poverty in developing countries.

"We meet the target, we do have the 100 billion," Kristalina Georgieva told reporters at a climate financing summit in Paris, adding that the fund needed another 40 billion to hit the target and "I'm very proud to announce that we now have 41 billion."

On March 20, 2023, introducing the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report on the impacts and trajectory of global warming, U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres delivered a blunt assessment of the challenge to prevent climate catastrophe.

"It starts with parties immediately hitting the fast-forward button on their net zero deadlines," Guterres said, but he acknowledged countries have different levels of responsibility and ability to change course.

The recent COP 27 Conference set forth that rich nations are, because of their impact on the planet, obligated to assist poorer nations not only on climate, but also, on helping such countries lift out of poverty.

The IMF plan, first announced in 2019, was for wealthier countries to recycle $100 billion in IMF special drawing rights (SDRs) for vulnerable economies.

SDRs are foreign exchange reserve assets awarded to countries based on how much they contribute to the IMF.

The idea, which some European countries resisted, was for wealthier countries to lend these foreign exchange reserve assets to the IMF, which could in turn lend them to developing economies.

Ahead of the summit, France and Japan announced that they would redeploy 30 percent of their SDRs for this purpose.