Eye on the IFIs

OPINION: The Corporate Takeover of Ukrainian Agriculture

At the same time as the United States, Canada and the European Union announced a set of new sanctions against Russia in mid-December last year, Ukraine received 350 million dollars in U.S. military aid, coming on top of a one billion dollar aid package approved by the U.S. Congress in March 2014. 

OPINION: Greece Gives EU the Chance to Rediscover Its Social Responsibility

The European Union should not be afraid of the leftist opposition party Syriza winning the Greek election, but see it as a chance to rediscover its founding principle - the social dimension that created it and without which it cannot survive.

OPINION: Banks, Inequality and Citizens

Every day we receive striking data on major issues which should create tumult and action, but life goes on as if those data had nothing to do with people’s lives.

Haitians Worry World Bank-Assisted Mining Law Could Result in “Looting”

With Haiti’s Parliament having dissolved on Tuesday, civil society groups are worried that the Haitian president may move to unilaterally put in place a contentious revision to the country’s decades-old mining law.

OPINION: No Nation Wants to Be Labeled “Least Developed”

Since 1971, Maldives is one of only three countries that have graduated from the ranks of the world’s “least developed countries” (LDCs) – the other two being Botswana and Cape Verde.

The Rise and Fall of the World’s Poorest Nations

The world's 48 Least Developed Countries (LDCs) - a special category of developing nations created by the General Assembly in 1971 but refused recognition by the World Bank - have long been described as "poorest of the poor" in need of special international assistance for their economic survival.

Changes to World Bank Safeguards Risk “Race to the Bottom”, U.N. Experts Warn

An unprecedented number of United Nations special rapporteurs and independent experts are raising pointed concerns over the World Bank’s ongoing review of its pioneering environmental and social safeguards, particularly around the role that human rights will play in these revamped policies.

World Bank Calls for Development Policy “Redesign” around Human Behaviour

The World Bank has taken an unusual but highly visible step away from traditional economics, encouraging policymakers and development implementers to place far more emphasis on research into local human behaviour when drawing up plans and projects.

OPINION: The Decline of Social Europe is Part of a World Trend

After the Italian sea search-and-rescue operation Mare Nostrum at a cost of nine million euros a month, through which the Italian Navy has rescued nearly 100,000 migrants – although perhaps up to 3,000 have died – from the Mediterranean since October 2013, Europe is now presenting its new face in the Mediterranean.

G20 Seeks to Streamline Private Investment in Infrastructure

Industrialised countries have agreed to collaborate on a new programme aimed at funnelling significant private-sector investment into global infrastructure projects, particularly in developing countries.

OPINION: Obstacles to Development Arising from the International System

As the international community wades into the political discussions regarding the alternatives to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) after 2015 and the design of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as mandated by the Rio+20 conference, it is timely to consider the question of whether development is a matter mostly of individual effort on the part of nation-states or whether there are elements in the international economic system that could serve as significant obstacles to national development efforts.

OPINION: Global Governance – We Need to Bring Civil Society to the Table

A poorly understood phenomenon is quietly but effectively shaping the daily lives of all citizens sharing this planet.

Global South Brings United Front to Green Climate Fund

The United Nations’ key mechanism for funding climate change-related mitigation and adaptation in developing countries is now ready to receive funds, following a series of agreements between rich and poor economies.

World Bank Pushes Private Sector for Major Investments in Infrastructure

The World Bank has initiated a major call to action for private sector investors around infrastructure projects in developing countries.

World Bank Reports Major Global Support for Carbon Pricing

Seventy-three countries and 22 lower-level governments offered formal support Monday for a global price on carbon dioxide emissions, including China, Russia and the European Union.

Environmental Funding Bypasses Indigenous Communities

When she talks about the forests in her native Kalimantan, the Indonesian part of the island of Borneo, Maridiana Deren’s facial expression changes. The calm, almost shy person is transformed into an emotionally charged woman, her fists clench and she stares wide-eyed at whoever is listening to her.

World Bank Tribunal Weighs Final Arguments in El Salvador Mining Dispute

A multilateral arbitration panel here began final hearings Monday in a contentious and long-running dispute between an international mining company and the government of El Salvador.

OPINION: Africans’ Land Rights at Risk as New Agricultural Trend Sweeps Continent

Agriculture in Africa is in urgent need of investment. Nearly 550 million people there are dependent on agriculture for their livelihoods, while half of the total population on the continent live in rural areas.

World Bank Urged to Rethink Reforms to Business-Friendliness Report

Civil society groups from several continents are stepping up a campaign urging the World Bank to strengthen a series of changes currently being made to a major annual report on countries’ business-friendliness.

Cry for Argentina: Fiscal Mismanagement, Odious Debt or Pillage?

Argentina has now taken the U.S. to The Hague for blocking the country’s 2005 settlement with the bulk of its creditors. The issue underscores the need for an international mechanism for nations to go bankrupt.

IFC Warned of Systemic Safeguards Failures in Honduras

For the second time this year, an internal auditor has criticised the World Bank’s private sector investment agency over dealings in Honduras, and is warning that similar problems are likely being experienced elsewhere.

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