Fred Kempe, Atlantic Council CEO (left), Werner Hoyer, President of the European Investment Bank (center) and Robert Zoellick, former President of the World Bank (right).

On April 20, the Atlantic Council’s EuroGrowth Initiative hosted Dr. Werner Hoyer, President of the European Investment Bank (EIB) and Mr. Robert Zoellick, Former President of the World Bank, US Trade Representative and former Deputy Secretary of State. Fred Kempe, Atlantic Council CEO, moderated the conversation.

Key takeaways are:

At a time when multilateralism is called into questioned, Mr. Zoellick insisted that world leaders must reaffirm the importance of a cooperative international system, explaining its tangible benefits to all stakeholders. Dr. Hoyer cited climate change as a paradigmatic case where multilateralism is needed to achieve common goals. He noted that the EIB is a leading provider of climate finance, with over $100 billion in climate-action finance planned for the next 5 years; the largest contribution of any single multilateral institution.

Regarding multilateral finance institutions, the speakers insisted that they should be viewed not just as funding providers for emergency cases, but as key policy shapers and innovative hubs. Dr. Hoyer described how the EIB was founded to serve all members of the European Union, but also aid development projects around the world. At the EIB, he said, “we believe in multilateralism and cooperating structures because the European Union’s success is built on that.”

Click here to view the webcast.