“It is unacceptable that BII is de facto exempt from UK’s climate commitments on aligning all new UK aid with the Paris Agreement” – Bond reacts to IDC report on the UK’s Development Finance Institution, BII

Today, Friday 15 September, The Committee for International Development (IDC) has released it’s report, Investment for Development: The UK’s Strategy Towards Development Finance Institutions, which calls for governance changes at British International Investment (BII) amid concerns over fraud and social and environmental harm.

The report found that BII holds some investments that conflict with UK Government policies and commitments including some relating to fossil fuels, the Paris Agreement and the SDGs. There has been no timetable from BII to adapt its legacy investment portfolio to align with UK interests.

In reaction to the report, Gideon Rabinowitz, Director of Policy and Advocacy at Bond, the UK network for NGOs, said: 

It is unacceptable that BII is de facto exempt from the UK’s climate commitments on aligning all new UK aid with the Paris Agreement by the end of 2023 and has no clear timeline to exit fossil fuel investments. 

BII should be a trailblazer in development finance leading the way and role-modeling sustainable, transparent, accountable investment with a clear development impact. When climate change is felt in all corners of the world, there should be no ifs or buts about ceasing financing carbon-intensive ventures. 

Coherence of BII’s investments with the government’s own commitments on fossil fuels, climate, sustainable development goals, or poverty reduction will never be possible with the government’s current hands-off approach. BII’s governance needs to be radically reformed to ensure that as a publicly funded organisation it is a visible operational arm of the UK government’s international commitments.


Notes to editors

  • Bond and a number of INGOs submitted evidence to the IDC inquiry.
  • Bond is the UK network for organisations working in international development. Bond unites and supports a diverse network of nearly 400 civil society organisations from across the UK, and allies to help eradicate global poverty, inequality and injustice. 
  • For further information or interviews please contact Jess Salter at [email protected] or call 07493200979.