New York, USA, 21 September 2023 – The World Economic Forum’s Humanitarian and Resilience Investing (HRI) Initiative, together with its partners, launched today a global call to action to respond to the systemic challenges faced by the 2 billion people living in poverty and insecurity across the world. Providing immediate and urgent relief will always remain necessary in acute crises; however, there is a need to complement established crisis response efforts with a sustainable market-based approach.
The statement calls on humanitarian and development organizations, donors and governments, development finance institutions, foundations, investors, investment facilitators and business leaders to join forces to mobilize $10 billion in commercial and catalytic capital to enable 1,000 local and international businesses in frontier markets to scale their operations by 2030.Market-driven solutions can strengthen local economies, respond to the systemic challenges faced by underserved communities living in extreme poverty, and reduce overall aid dependency.
“We must respond to the systemic challenges faced by the world’s most vulnerable communities in a way that is sustainable and inclusive,” said Mirek Dušek, Managing Director, World Economic Forum.“Unlocking the potential in frontier markets hinges on connecting the dots,” said Peter Maurer, Co-Chair, Humanitarian and Resilience Investing (HRI) Initiative. “Partnerships across sectors are critical to achieve this.”
“We see enormous untapped potential in frontier markets, which remain the world’s most underinvested markets. The World Bank has scaled up significantly its financing – especially concessional resources – to support vulnerable communities living in these areas,” said Axel van Trotsenburg, Senior Managing Director, World Bank.
“What we need to provide is capital flow. We need to give the local entrepreneurs tools and systems to provide their services and products in local markets,” said Anne Beathe Tvinnereim, Minister of International Development of Norway.
The call to action aims to better integrate collaboration between key stakeholder groups along the investment continuum, focus on impact-adjusted returns, and increase transparency and measurement of financial and impact performance.
Organizations that have endorsed this open call to action include:
Acumen, African Development Bank (AfDB), African Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (AVCA), AfricInvest, AgDevCo, Agence Française de Développement (AFD), Bamboo Capital Partners, Blue like an Orange Capital, Circle Internet Financial LLC, Collaborative for Frontier Finance (CFF), Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, CrossBoundary, Danish Refugee Council, Development Initiatives, Development Partners International (DPI), Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation, ECP Investments, elea Foundation for Ethics in Globalization, Endeavor, EVPA – the European Investing for Impact Network, Finance in Motion GmbH, GIB Asset Management, Global Private Capital Association (GPCA), Investisseurs et Partenaires (I&P), iGravity, IKEA Foundation, International Finance Corporation (IFC), International Rescue Committee (IRC), InterPeace, KOIS, Leapfrog Investments, Lightrock, Mastercard, Meridiam, Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, ODI, Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG), Refugee Investment Network, Renew Capital, Roots of Impact, Stellar Development Foundation, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), UBS Optimus Foundation, United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), United States Government, Village Capital, Vital Capital, Water.org and WaterEquity.
The HRI Initiative and partners will identify and announce actionable steps to support investment opportunities and mobilize capital to scale these opportunities. The initiative welcomes more organizations to join the call to action and collectively deliver on its ambitious goal.
About the Sustainable Development Impact Meetings 2023
The Sustainable Development Impact Meetings 2023 are taking place on 18-22 September in New York. The meetings will reflect on progress made on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and revive momentum for multistakeholder action. More than 1,000 business leaders, policy-makers, leaders from international and civil society organizations, innovators and social entrepreneurs will come together in person to advance concrete progress on the SDGs.