With increased trade and investment and the opportunities from changes such as new technologies, many of today’s developing economies are growing rapidly. This growth is the engine for producing the jobs and prosperity which development will rely on.
Our key areas of focus are:
The US Agency for International Development estimates that for a typical developing country about 90% of investment come from private sector investment. Donors and businesses both recognise the need to collaborate to build sustainable businesses which contribute to the development of the societies they work in. But with such different organisational cultures, the process can be challenging. We have worked extensively on collaborations such as DFID’s strategic partnerships with Coca-Cola, The Discovery Channel and Avanti Communications to support girls’ education.
Pioneering investors are now investing to generate social and environmental impact alongside a financial return – so called impact investing has already mobilised tens of billions of capital, but its potential is far greater. Unlocking this will need continued work on establishing the standards, track records and ecosystems for the industry to draw in a wider range of investors.
There is now a focus on inclusive business initiatives for companies and donors to deliver growth and prosperity for all. This includes working with the private sector, donors, government and others to improve the access of poor women and men to markets as producers, consumers, employees and entrepreneurs. Through technical assistance, grants and other financial channels, donors could enable new and innovative ways of working. This has the potential to help breakdown the constraints that currently limit opportunities for poor people to get involved in local economic activities and support themselves, thereby inspiring widespread, long-lasting poverty reduction.
Governments now place particular focus on improving their ranking in the World Bank’s Doing Business index which reflects their investment climate.
The Impact Programme is a DFID investment fund which aims to foster the development of the impact investment market in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. Over 13 years it will fund more than 100 pro-poor businesses and entrepreneurs who might otherwise struggle to attract commercial investment. The programme’s baseline study indicates that:
Development Finance Institutions are important stakeholders in the target regions, both as market facilitators and investors. There is little publicly available data on the impact investment market in the target regions. The Impact Programme aims to address this gap.