Skip to main content
Closing Remarks

2024 IDB and IDB Invest Annual Meetings of the Boards of Governors       
President Ilan Goldfajn


Punta Cana, Dominican Republic   
As prepared for delivery          


Historic day! Historic annual meetings. We did it.

For first time in IDB's history, Governors approved three transformational changes that will reshape the entire IDB Group and, potentially, the region.

The hat trick, three goals in one AM. Or the home run with the bases full.

Thank Governors, delegations. Thank the staff and directors that worked so hard.

This was a remarkable AM for several reasons.

Partnership: MOUs, LOI.

In addition to the three transformational reforms, we demonstrated our power to convene by bringing more than 2,500 people and organizations together, here in person, from about 57 countries.

We signed new loan and partnership agreements and letters of intent with Barbados, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Japan, Trinidad & Tobago, the CAF, and others that will help us do everything from launching the Pan American Highway for Digital Health to reducing gender inequality, investing in digitalization, improved fiscal management, resilient infrastructure, and developing the green hydrogen industry.

This level of mutual commitment reflects the special partnership between countries, the private sector and the IDB Group and our role as the bridge between the region and the rest of the world.

We also had key events:

1.    Like the very productive Civil Society event Wednesday.

We're strengthening our relationship with civil society organizations. These annual meetings also innovated by inviting civil society to play a central role, for the first time in over a decade.

Through our new institutional strategy, we're seeking a new framework and increased involvement of civil society in our work, making civil society a key development partner.

Or the Boards of Governors event on Women’s Day with the important declaration pledging to foster more equality and more diverse representation on the Boards of Executive Directors.

This is an important step forward and has our full support.

As part of our efforts to foster gender equality and diversity in the region, we also announced the appointment of Diana Rodríguez Franco as Special Advisor on Gender and Diversity, following a competitive selection process.

Diana will be responsible for enhancing coordination and fostering synergies within the IDB Group and with external partners on Gender and Diversity issues to achieve greater impact.

2.    The regional events were fantastic

Like the Amazon Forever program one, that showed, in practice, how a regional platform can work, with collaboration between country members, donors, multilaterals, other institutions, and people in the region.

One Caribbean, an important and overdue program for us all to work together in the Caribbean.

3.    BID for the Americas program, to attract companies and investors to LAC.

4.    And we focused on knowledge.

We held 8 seminars aimed at addressing key challenges and opportunities in LAC, reflecting the richness of the expertise and knowledge that our teams bring to work every day.

Education, energy, food security, inequality, women’s day, citizen security, financial innovation, Institutional Strategy, IDB Invest/IDB Lab, Business Forum

Let me talk about the core reason we came here: The Three Transformational Changes

1.    Institutional Strategy

A new Institutional Strategy will increase the impact and scale of our work, focusing it on poverty and inequality, boosting economic growth, and addressing climate change. The new strategy enables us to transform the institution for greater impact and scale.

It will also help us be Strategically Selective.

So, we can increase the impact and scale of things like our education program with the World Bank, which aims to reduce poverty and inequality by helping 3.5 million students learn better at 12,000 schools in 16 countries.

Broadly speaking, the Institutional Strategy will help us increase impact and scale, which are different things. Scale without meaningful impact is not productive. And impact without scale would lead to insufficient results for today's challenges. Our only viable option is to seek impactful results on a large scale.

Among other things, the new IS elevates climate and nature as a priority development objective and includes a new emphasis on citizen security and disaster risk management.

The IS has many embedded reforms.

  • Development Effectiveness reform. It’s not the amount of dollars we lend that matters but the number of people we lift out of poverty, that have water and sewage treatment, that receive proper education and healthcare. Or the CO2 emissions we can reduce. Or the decline in deforestation.
  • This requires paying attention to the whole cycle of a project, not just its approval. We must improve processes, checks and balances, changes in programming, country strategies. We must strategically select projects with greater impact and give staff the right incentives to promote greater impact. Essentially, we need to promote a culture of Impact.
  • Another example is our instrument reform, particularly a proposal for PBL reform, to improve the quality and impact of policy reforms. A good policy project can provide more economic, social, and environmental stability, improve a country’s institutions, reduce crime, foster productivity growth and, importantly, enable more investment in the country, and mobilize much needed resources to improve social, climate and growth indicators.
  • Or the knowledge reform. We’re proposing greater and more efficient investment in knowledge, including via technical assistance to support countries. We need to catalogue both successes and failures, and evidence-based data, to provide the best advice to countries. The IDB needs to be THE knowledge bank of the region.
  • Or the Fragility framework, that helps us shape the assistance we can give to countries in a situation like that faced today by Haiti, which deserves our solidarity and help.
  • Or promoting Regional Integration, like the four flagship programs we promoted in just one year, as exciting as Amazon Forever, One Caribbean, America en el Centro, and the Rotas de Integracao in South America.

The new IS will be complemented by an Impact Framework including quantitative corporate targets to measure progress and reflect the Group’s increased ambition.

Alexandre and the team did a wonderful job, with the help of basically the whole bank, and BoD.

2.    IDB Invest

A new vision, business model, and a $3.5 billion capital increase for IDB Invest will double its size in a few years.

IDB Invest’s new business model will increase the volume of investment to projects through an “originate-to-share” business model. Instead of a buy-and-hold model.

It will have more power to provide more equity and domestic currency loans.

This will give the Group much greater investment power to mobilize much needed investment to our development goals, and help countries be part of the solution of global challenges, like promoting the energy transition and climate change resilience, reducing food insecurity and promoting biodiversity and nature.

It will let us do both more and bigger deals like one we’re structuring now, the largest financing deal of its kind in the Caribbean, to increase the region’s share of renewable energy to 30% by 2030.

3.    IDB Lab

A new vision for IDB Lab, our innovation laboratory, including its replenishment and a new sustainable model, with up to $400 million in additional resources.

It will let us triple the resources it mobilizes per dollar deployed and scale up a larger share of its projects, 40% versus 34% previously.

A new vision for IDB Lab means we’ll have more resources to help entrepreneurs and startups address key challenges.

It means more initiatives, like one I mentioned yesterday, where we’ll launch a multimillion competition to help entrepreneurs find new ways to manage and even market the sargassum seaweed that clogs beaches and endangers marine life in countries like the Dominican Republic.


Together, the new Institutional Strategy, IDB Invest’s capitalization and new vision, and IDB Lab's new model will allow the IDB Group to increase lending capacity to up to $112 billion over 10 years.

It would also allow us to triple our climate financing from $50 billion to $150 billion in the next decade.

We're calling the sum of all these changes Impact+

It means we'll achieve much more impact, plus much more scale. Impact+

Next steps

With the three transformational changes now approved, we’ll immediately begin the detailed design and implementation of all these reforms.

The new Institutional Strategy will guide our Group's work through 2030, coinciding with the UN’s SDGs timeline.


So, as you can see, we've all just participated in truly historic annual meetings. Meetings that will be remembered for positioning our Group for greater impact and scale. Meetings that will change the IDB Group. That will mark an inflection of the IDBG.

Importantly, meetings that also aim to promote an inflection point in the region, helping LAC seize the opportunity to grow and develop on the heels of being part of the solution to global challenges.

“Make no little plans,” said the famous Chicago architect Daniel Burnham, who inspired the city to build one of the world's most ambitious and enduring skylines. He said little plans have no magic. So, he said: aim high and make big plans.

That’s what we did for these annual meetings. We aimed high. We made big plans. We thought big.

Today, those plans become a reality. So, when you're thinking big, think BID. Think IDB. Think IDBImpact+.

Thank you to:

  • Host—Dominican Republic, President Abinader, Minister Jochi
  • Governors
  • Directors
  • Media
  • IDB Group employees  

About the IDB Group

The IDB Group is the leading source of development financing for Latin America and the Caribbean. We contribute to improving lives by providing financial solutions and development expertise to public- and private-sector clients. The Group comprises the IDB, which has worked with governments for more than 60 years; IDB Invest, which serves the private sector; and IDB Lab, which tests innovative ways to enable more inclusive growth. 

You may also like

Dominican Republic and the IDB

Read more
Jump back to top