Yellen to push for concrete actions at Paris debt summit

(Reuters) – U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will press world leaders to take concrete actions at a summit this week on easing the debt burdens of low-income nations, a senior Treasury Department official said on Wednesday.

Yellen will lead the U.S. delegation to the Paris meeting on Thursday and Friday. French President Emmanuel Macron also wants delegates to commit to freeing up funds for climate financing.

“(She) will rally world leaders to take concrete actions to partner with developing and emerging economies to serve inclusive growth and address challenges that threaten all of us, like climate change, pandemics, and fragility,” the official told reporters on a conference call.

Achieving these goals requires sound public policies as well as mobilizing more money from the private sector, the official added.

Governments are looking at ways to allow the World Bank to use leverage to lend more to poor countries without putting its top AAA credit rating a risk.

Yellen will also press for additional steps to improve the debt restructuring process through the global sovereign debt roundtable, which includes representatives of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the G20 major economies.

When in Paris, Yellen plans a number of bilateral meetings, putting a priority on representatives from “countries, emerging markets that she doesn’t necessarily always meet with,” said the official, who did not give details.

(Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Andrea Ricci)