Gallagher Gives Talk on China and Green Finance


The Center for the Study of Asia, an affiliated Center of the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies, hosted an April 20, 2016 talk by Kevin Gallagher, Professor of Global Development Policy, entitled “Greening Chinese Development Banks: Lessons from the Americas.” The event was moderated by Min Ye, Assistant Professor of International Relations.

During the talk, which was attended by faculty and students, Gallagher emphasized the potential for Chinese development banks to be a leader in the field of green finance and China’s risks and missed opportunities for green development in Latin America.

“In Latin America, some countries have new constitutions with higher standards than even US law or the World Bank, but these are often forgotten in times of economic downswing. The Chinese doing the development are often cast as the demon by NGOs in these cases, but it’s really the governments’ resources which are the problem. In these cases I would recommend that China does not outsource its risk to populist government who will throw out their own standards.”

Gallagher concluded his talk by recommending that China invest its capital in green finance opportunities, highlighting returns on many levels.

“Chins is poised to lead in green finance. These are investments in long term economic and political stability, not charity as the US seems to think. Green energy doesn’t pay off if you’re just looking at costs versus revenue, but development banks are built to make up the difference. China’s involvement in green development finance would be competitive, and would be a motivator for western banks to get their act together.”

Kevin Gallagher is the co-chair of the Task Force on Regulating Capital Flows and has served as an advisor to the Department of State and the Environmental Protection Agency in the United States, as well as to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development. Gallagher has been a visiting or adjunct professor at the School for Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University, the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy; El Colegio de Mexico in Mexico; Tsinghua University in China, and the Center for State and Society in Argentina. You can read more about him here.