Interesting article in the WSJ about the US and Indonesia.
The deal is the largest so-called debt-for-nature swap the U.S. government has organized so far under the U.S. Tropical Forest Conservation Act and its first such pact with Indonesia, which has one of the fastest deforestation rates in the world, losing an area of forest the size of Switzerland annually. Conservation International, the U.S.-based conservancy group, helped organize the deal, and has contributed $1 million to help reduce the debt.
Under the deal, Indonesia will pay the nearly $30 million into a trust over eight years instead of repaying it to the U.S. government. The trust will issue grants for critical forest conservation work in 13 forest areas in Sumatra. Sumatra Island is home to endangered tigers, elephants, rhinos and orangutan.
The U.S. in the past has organized smaller debt-for-nature swaps with countries like Guatemala, Botswana, the Philippines and Peru. Under the Tropical Forest Conservation Act of 1998, developing nations with a significant tropical forest, a democratically-elected government, and an economic reform agenda, are eligible for debt forgiveness in return for conservation efforts.