Ms. Kristalina Georgieva, the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), expressed her appreciation for Qatar’s recent pledge. On May 24, 2023, Qatar announced its commitment to allocate 20% of its Special Drawing Rights (SDR) holdings to the IMF’s Poverty Reduction and Growth Trust (PRGT) and Resilience and Sustainability Trust (RST). Ms. Georgieva commended Qatar’s leadership in addressing two pressing global challenges: poverty reduction and climate change mitigation. She conveyed deep gratitude for Qatar’s generosity and its significant contribution.
Qatar’s pledge to the PRGT will enable the IMF to continue providing zero-interest loans to the world’s poorest countries during these challenging times. This financing will help stimulate growth, reduce poverty, attract funding from donors and the private sector, and facilitate necessary debt treatment.
Furthermore, Qatar’s contribution to the RST will provide vulnerable countries with affordable financing to tackle long-term challenges such as climate change mitigation and pandemic preparedness. Qatar’s commitment and leadership send a strong signal about the value of solidarity with those most in need. Ms. Georgieva called on financially capable countries, particularly those in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and Africa, to demonstrate their commitment to supporting vulnerable countries.
The demand for PRGT financing is at record levels, prompting the IMF to scale up its interest-free financing to $24 billion since the pandemic’s onset—a more than four-fold increase. However, additional resources will be needed to address further demand and higher interest rates. Urgent action is required to bridge the $1.2 billion funding gap, especially in subsidy resources, to ensure continued support for the IMF’s poorest member countries.
The upcoming IMF and World Bank Annual Meetings in Marrakech in October present a historic opportunity for Qatar and the entire region to showcase their global leadership and solidarity with vulnerable low-income members. Supporting efforts to close the remaining funding gap will underline their commitment to the most vulnerable nations.
In addition to the pledge announcement, Qatar hosted an event in Doha on Wednesday, featuring H.E. Mr. Ali bin Ahmed Al Kuwari, the Minister of Finance, and IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva as speakers. Ms. Georgieva also participated in the Qatar Economic Forum, engaging in discussions with H.H. Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, the Amir of Qatar, H.H. Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of the Qatar Foundation, and H.E. Sheikh Bandar bin Mohammed bin Saoud Al Thani, the Central Bank Governor and Chairman of the Board of Qatar Investment Authority. During these bilateral meetings, Ms. Georgieva emphasized the IMF’s appreciation for its partnership with Qatar and highlighted the pivotal role the country and the region play as global leaders in addressing pressing challenges.
Qatar’s recent pledge demonstrates its global leadership and commitment to supporting poverty reduction and climate change mitigation. The IMF acknowledges Qatar’s significant contribution and calls on other countries, particularly those with the means and capacity, to address funding shortfalls. By collectively demonstrating solidarity, the global community can work towards a more resilient and sustainable future for all.