IN THIS EDITION:
-> 1. Comments
-> 2. Special coverage
-> 3. Events
-> 4. News
-> 5. Reports
-> 6. Statements
-> 7. Special website
* Programmes and loans designed and controlled by IFIs play a powerful role in shaping the economic trajectories of many countries in the Global South. We all have something to say on these issues. We invite you to add your comments and opinions in all the news and reports published on our website. Your opinion is important to us!
2. SPECIAL COVERAGE
-> IFIwatchnet weblog: IMF leadership selection process
Mr. Dominique Strauss-Kahn was finally named by consensus to head IMF September 28th, and he will take office November 1st.
For the whole story check: http://www.ifiwatchnet.org/?q=es/featured_blog/336
-> World Bank/IMF Annual Meetings - Washington D.C., 20-22 October 2007
The 2007 Annual Meetings of World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) took place over a 3-day period, from October 20 to 22, at the WB and IMF headquarters in Washington D.C. Civil society groups organised events from October 18. Also, citizen actions and mobilizations took place worldwide, as part of the Week of Global Action vs. Debt and IFIs.
For updates and analysis check the IFIwatchnet coverage: http://www.ifiwatchnet.org/?q=es/node/3016
-> The Bank of the South: New South American integration or a new instrument for domination?
At the meeting held on 8 October 2007 in Rio de Janeiro, the ministers of economy and finance of Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela made further progress in negotiations leading to the founding of the Bank of the South. On this occasion the founding document of the new multilateral financial institution was signed. The bank's headquarters will be in Caracas. So far there had been no agreement over the share of each country's contribution, nor about the decision-making system. At this meeting the date for the launching of the Bank was fixed for 3 November, but for the third time the ceremony was postponed to 9 December in Buenos Aires.
-> Trading for Aid
"Aid for Trade" initiative is part of a deal struck at the 2005 WTO Ministerial in Hong Kong as an attempt to move the Doha Round of trade negotiations forward by helping poor countries take advantage of all the alleged benefits of a further liberalized trading system. From 19 to 21 November representatives from the World Trade Organization, the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, the United Nations Development Program and trade and finance ministers were meeting in Geneva to discuss this initiative.
Source: IFIs Latin American Monitor
-> The World Bank is looking for money: Updated on the IDA15 replenishment
While the IBRD raises most of its funds on the world's financial markets, International Developmente Association (IDA) is funded largely by contributions from the governments of its richer member countries. Additional funds come from IBRD's and IFC’s income and from borrowers' repayments of earlier IDA credits. The IDA15 Replenishment is taking place this year and the fourth meeting took place in Dublin, Ireland, November 12-13. The major topics of discussion included country-level effectiveness, harmonization and alignment, results and climate change.
Source: IFIs Latin American Monitor
-> Workshop on the Bank of the South within the framework of the Summit of the Ibero-American People (Santiago, 2007)
The "Summit for the Friendship and Integration of the Ibero-American Peoples" took place in Santiago, Chile, from 8 to 10 November, concurrently with the Summit of Ibero-American Heads of State and Government. Rede Brasil and Jubilee South/Americas organized a workshop on 8 November to discuss the implications of the creation of the Bank of the South and define strategies for advocacy.
Source: Rede Brasil
-> Old promises, new faces, in a decadent IMF
On 1 November 2007 French economist Dominique Strauss Khan (DSK) took over as the new managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). He took office at a special moment for the institution, when it was necessary not only to pick a successor for Rodrigo de Rato before the end of his term, but also during a period in which the legitimacy and credibility of the institution are far from what they were in the past. Mr Rato's successor promises changes that are being demanded by many governments in the South.
* Putting Financing for Development in perspective: The South finances the North
The gross asymmetries in the distribution of wealth justify North-South transfers, through increased and improved ODA. However, net global financial flows show a different picture: the reality is that Southern countries transfer resources to the North. Because of that, developing countries are trying alternative South-South integration experiences and South-South banks. However, the extreme inequality in the distribution of world’s wealth requires multilateral action to avoid savings leaving developing countries, and increased/improved ODA to ensure redistribution at a global scale.(pdf format)
* World Bank still pushing economic policy conditions
The World Bank has made only limited progress in reducing the number of economic policy conditions, such as privatisation and trade liberalisation, attached to its financing but is instead reclassifying and bundling together conditions in order to downplay use of such conditionalities, Eurodad's study has found. The report, "Untying the Knots", finds that "more than two thirds of Bank loans and grants (71%) still have sensitive policy reforms attached to them as conditions".
* Economy of Solidarity: Centered on human beings
Since the 1980s, a hegemonic neoliberal economic model has been imposed worldwide, encouraging individualism and competition in economic relations. Nowadays, there is new consensus that this model has increased poverty, inequality and social exclusion. In the face of an economic model that has stripped the economy of its social meaning, the economy of solidarity constitutes a worldwide school of thought and action that seeks to reinstill the social, ethical and political sense of economics.
Source: Forum Solidaridad Perú
* Double majority decision making at the IMF - Implementing effective board voting reform
Many have championed the use of double majorities at the IMF board in order to increase the ability of developing countries to influence decision making. The acceptance of this idea by incoming IMF managing director Dominique Strauss-Kahn is welcome, but if he chooses to use a chair-based, rather than member-state-based, second majority it will not change the power dynamics at the board.
Source: Bretton Woods Project
* World Bank's social security reforms hamper fight against poverty
Social security, a historically proved method to reduce poverty, is being decimated all over the world through World Bank-promoted privatization reforms, states the 2007 Social Watch Report. According to SW, the state remains the only feasible institutional mechanism for social protection for marginalized, poor older people with no access to either labour market opportunities or alternative risk mitigating assets, even if financial limitations make this task quite difficult.
Source: Social Watch
* Civil Society statement on Global Aid for Trade Review
* Second open letter to the Presidents of Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela on the Bank of the South
*** All Statements
7. SPECIAL WEBSITE
-> Rios Vivos Coalition
Rios Vivos Coalition is one of the most important Latin America's networks. Rios Vivos believes in the need of a profound analysis of the current developmental paradigm responsible of promoting infra-structural projects, looking for alternative sustainable development answers for each region. The coalition is developing a program about IFIs and their social control.
*** NGOs directory
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-> Use our search engine to find information in the civil society web sites
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