WAIPA CEO on the Fourth Roundtable on the Trajectory of Investment for Sustainable Development

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Geneva, Switzerland: On June 2nd, 2017 WAIPA CEO participated on the fourth dialogue in the 2016/2017 series of investment policy dialogues, following from the E15Initiative, jointly organized by the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) and the World Economic Forum, with the support of the Government of the Netherlands.

The dialogue aimed to deepen the discussions initiated at the February 22 workshop on clarifying the linkages between investment and sustainable development by developing an indicative list of the sustainability-oriented attributes most often sought after when facilitating cross-border investment flows.

Discussions examined the rationale for developing the indicative list, by considering its use in light of recent changes within the global political and business landscape.

Skalar pointed out the lack of capacity. He said that many of the developing countries and almost all of the least developed countries lack the capacity to have any chance at competing in the highly competitive Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) world market.

He mentioned that three key determinants, namely: economic stability, regulatory framework and investment facilitation predispose the FDI flow towards any country or region. For countries all over the world, FDI is an important tool that drives their growth and development, he said. Therefore, Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) play a key role in the sustainable development agenda and are responsible for both attracting FDI and ensuring it is beneficial for the host countries.

Furthermore, he presented the survey that WAIPA conducted in collaboration with the Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment (CCSI) to determine what IPAs consider as characteristics to sustainable investment. However, identifying these characteristics of sustainable investment is just the part of a larger process that ensures sustainable investment, he said and continued that it will contribute extensively to international investment debate by highlighting the desirable characteristics of FDI and what can be done to promote and encourage sustainable FDI.