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BRIEFNovember 30, 2022

City Creditworthiness Initiative – Local Government Borrowing Database – CCI-LGBD

Cities generate over 80% of global GDP and are home to just over half of the world population, a number that will grow to 70% by 2050.  In order to effectively meet the immense challenges from rapid urbanization, cities in developing countries will need $4.5 – 5.4 trillion per year of infrastructure investment. 

However, funding from traditional sources can only go so far: if cities are to meet the demands of urbanization, they will need to access long-term borrowing on the strength of their own balance sheets.  To support cities in this effort, stakeholders need to have quality data on the local government borrowing landscape across multiple contexts.  Yet data on borrowing at the local level is scarce and reliable descriptions of legal and regulatory environments limited.  

The City Creditworthiness Initiative - Local Government Borrowing Database (CCI-LGBD) is a pilot research product comprised of quantitative and qualitative information that describes the enabling environment and experience of local government entities in respect to debt. The objective of the database is to add to the global knowledge of local government borrowing in developing countries and specifically in IBRD/IDA recipient countries. 

The information and data presented is garnered primarily from official local and central government sources and from international organizations (OECD, IMF, World Bank).  Each researched country includes the following: 


1. Country Profile: Written snapshot of the enabling environment and experience for local governments:

  • Regulatory regime 
  • Sources of lending 
  • Major organizations 
  • Debt management 
  • Transparency 
  • Recent events/initiatives 

2. Country-level data: Quantitative country level indicators & ratios:

  • Total sub-national government & local government breakdown 
  • Debt levels, sources, instruments, metrics 
  • Legal & regulatory indicators (enabling environment & market depth) 

3. City-level data: Quantitative local government level indicators & ratios:

  • Debt levels, sources, instruments, metrics 
  • Transparency 
  • Credit ratings & bond issuances 
  • Debt securities data set 


Because of its value in supplementing sub-national statistics and informing interventions, the CCI-LGDB is intended as a public good and will be made open access once it launches.  Ultimately the research will cover between 30-40 countries, to be updated on an as-needed basis.  


As part of the work program of the Global Solutions Group for City Management, Finance and Governance and housed in GPURL, CCI-LGBD belongs to a family of knowledge and analytical products focused on municipal finance in developing countries.  These include The Municipal Finances Self-Assessment, the guide Municipal Finances – a Handbook for Local Governmentsthe Property Tax Diagnostic Manual and the City Creditworthiness Initiative Self-Assessment and Planning Toolkit.  The City Creditworthiness initiative is funded by the Public Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility (PPIAF) and the Rockefeller Foundation.