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Borrowing is an important tool for financing investment critical to achieving sustainable development, including the sustainable development goals. Sovereign borrowing also allows government finance to play a countercyclical role over economic cycles. However, borrowing needs to be managed prudently. Since the Monterrey Consensus, strengthened macroeconomic and public resource management has led to a substantial decline in the vulnerability of many countries to sovereign debt distress, as has the substantial debt reduction through the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative (HIPC) and Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative. Yet many countries remain vulnerable to debt crises and some are in the midst of crises, including a number of least developed countries, small island developing States and some developed countries. We acknowledge that debt sustainability challenges facing many least developed countries and small island developing States require urgent solutions, and the importance of ensuring debt sustainability to the smooth transition of countries that have graduated from least developed country status.


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