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Metamorphosis

In just 30 years, Vietnam has undergone a profound transformation from planned economy to the next Asian Tiger. The IMF sent documentary filmmaker Steve Dorst to Vietnam to search out stories that help explain Vietnam’s rapid rise.

The Power of Education

Vietnam has invested heavily in education, allowing young people to fulfill their dreams of starting their own business. Hear how Nguyen Thu Ha thinks her studies will enable her to be a successful business owner. The IMF sent documentary filmmaker Steve Dorst to Vietnam to search out stories that help explain Vietnam’s rapid rise as a next-generation “Asian tiger” economy.

Partners in Progress

Policymakers from Ireland, Vietnam, and Colombia speak about their journeys to overcome financial difficulties and build stronger economies, and how the International Monetary Fund was able to help. One of many countries hit by the global financial crisis, Ireland faced a major banking crisis that caused mass unemployment and systemic housing foreclosures. Vietnam embarked on major reforms to open up its economy to trade and investment, as it sought to fulfill its ambition to become the latest Asian tiger. Colombia, for its part, required more revenue to weather an historic shock and move forward with the country’s historic peace agreement after 50 years of civil war.  The IMF sent filmmaker Steve Dorst to these three countries, and Steve served as director/shooter/editor/writer/producer.

IMF: Never Refuse the Call

Economic hardship can strike anywhere. Before World War II, countries rarely sought outside advice on monetary and fiscal policy. But as the global economy zigs and zags, who do countries turn to? The IMF never refuses the call. In 2017, more than 180 countries worked closely with the IMF on issues important to them.

WRI Ross Prize for Cities

With the generous support of visionary business leader and philanthropist Stephen M. Ross, WRI Ross Center is announcing a global competition designed to identify, celebrate and replicate transformative initiatives that create a ripple effect, igniting citywide change.

CBCMP: “A Huge Difference”

This is the story of how the Afghan Ministry of Agriculture improves how it does business, which helps farmers, spurs the economy, and contributes to stability. This is a USDA program named CBCMP (Capacity Building and Change Management) that is uniquely effective. Since 1964, IESC has worked in 130 countries and helped to create or save over 1.5 million jobs.

Gender CEO Award: Women Powering Africa

MIGA hosted its 2nd Gender CEO Award on International Women’s Day (March 8) to recognize the accomplishments of a CEO, or equivalent, from one of its clients with a record of seeking to create opportunities for women and promoting gender equality. This year’s awardee was Helen Tarnoy, Managing Director of Aldwych International. A pioneer in her field, Ms. Tarnoy has led several business development efforts in Africa since 1997, including the financing of the successful Songas project in Tanzania. She also spent two years as Director General of the Cameroon integrated utility, Sonel, with a workforce of 3,500 people and a turnover of some $180m. Aldwych International received political risk guarantees from MIGA through its investment in Azura Power West Africa Ltd., a company created to develop a 459MW open-cycle gas power plant near Benin City in Edo State, Nigeria.

Turkey: Breakthrough Financing Brings Much-Needed Hospital

This is the story of recent breakthroughs in the application of political risk insurance and liquidity support which are incentivizing private investors to invest in developing countries. MIGA political risk insurance, and an assurance of liquidity from EBRD, for example, recently contributed to a coveted two-notch bump in the rating of a bond issued to raise funds for a hospital PPP project in Turkey. As a result, a new and broader class of investors is now demonstrating interest in this, and similar projects. If scaled up effectively, trillions of dollars currently sitting on the sidelines and earning little interest could be channeled to development projects through such innovations.

Expanding Microfinance in Rural Lebanon

This is the story of a USAID project, Lebanon Investment in Microfinance Program, which worked with nine microfinance institutions to improve access to finance and increase lending to business owners in rural Lebanon. The program awarded about $10 million in grants to microfinance partners, who then made 14,000 micro-loans totaling more than $30 million. In 2015, the nation’s first microfinance association was formed, which will better serve the needs of small business owners throughout Lebanon.

Brazil: Inside the Water Utility Aggregation in the state of Ceará

This is the story of an innovative aggregation model that emerged in Ceará state to support communities in securing reliable, efficient, and sustainable water supplies. In the state of Ceará, in Brazil’s northeast, extending water services in rural areas was a challenge. That is until the State Water and Sanitation Company (CAGECE) created the Integrated Rural Sanitation System (SISAR), an association of community-based service providers, in 1996. This story shows that when communities and water associations work together, it can make a big difference and transform people’s quality of life.