Case 292 - The Rocky Road toward Debt Forgiveness
Hey, Jeanne A. K.
This case study analyzes efforts by the Group of 7, grassroots organizations, multilateral institutions, and the United States government to enact wide-scale debt forgiveness for the world’s highly indebted poor countries at the turn of the last century. It begins with a history of Third World debt and the major arguments for and against debt forgiveness, then reviews multilateral and U.S. debt relief initiatives. After assessing the impact of Bono, the U2 singer, who has brought enormous global media attention to this project, the case concludes with details of the U.S. budgetary processes that led to funding of debt relief in 2000 and 2001. It would be appropriate for courses in world politics, international political economy, development issues, and foreign policy analysis.