French Development Minister Sees Hope for Sustainability Goals

(Bloomberg) -- Chrysoula Zacharopoulou, France’s minister for development, expressed some optimism after this week’s meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank that United Nations goals for sustainable development can be met by 2030.

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In an interview on Bloomberg Television’s Balance of Power, Zacharopoulou acknowledged that a “huge gap” remains between the $200 billion a year that’s been committed and the $4 trillion aspiration that would pay for climate initiatives, infrastructure and other development objectives outlined in a report by British economist Nicholas Stern.

She said reforms of the international financing system would be necessary so “all people can live in our planet with dignity.”

“We have to have the courage now to reform the multilateral development banks, we have to treat the debt, the question of the debt, because many countries, particularly in Africa, they have problems with the debt,” Zacharopoulou said.

“We want a better, bigger bank,” she added, referring to the World Bank.

Asked how receptive the US has been to the reforms, Zacharopoulou, a former member of the European Parliament, said despite the differences between the American and European political systems, “We have the same vision. I think we work very well together.”

--With assistance from Kailey Leinz and Joe Mathieu.

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