Speech on the Role of IFIs in Privatization - Commonwealth Foundation

Commonwealth Foundation
Brunei Darasalaam
July 22nd, 2003

The Role of IFIs
Pamela Foster
Halifax Initiative Coalition

I may have been asked to give this talk as I, among our Commonwealth colleagues, sit closest to Washington. As there is so much experience in the room in addressing issues of the World Bank and the IMF[1], I will merely start a list of all the ways that the IFIs are implicated in the relentless drive towards privatization of public assets.

First, I would like to quickly share two contextual comments regarding this push towards privatization. It must be situated within the drive towards the end of history, or the ultimate global supremacy of US-modeled capitalism. This victory was declared at the end of the Cold War. The end of history envisions the role of the state being limited to maintaining law and order and a sound investment climate.

Speech to the New Humanity International NGO Conference

“A Global Agreement towards a United World”, June 1 – 3, 2001, Genoa, Italy

Experience with Currency Transactions (Tobin) Taxes – Debunking the Myths and Building Political Support

by Robin Round, Policy Analyst

The world of finance has become a global gambling casino, where investors seeking quick profits bet huge sums around the clock. Big banks and investment firms are the players, profiting from the minute-to-minute, hourly or daily fluctuations in prices on bond and currency markets around the world. These players are not investing in the `real economy', which generates jobs and produces goods and services, they are investing in the ‘paper economy’ in which money becomes a commodity rather than a means of exchange.

Is the Tobin Tax Practicable? June 7, 2000

Is the Tobin Tax Practicable?

Rodney Schmidt
International Development Research Centre
Government of Canada (Vietnam office)
Tel/Fax (84-4) 942-0177

7 June 2000

The proposed Tobin tax is a percentage of the quantity of domestic currency converted into foreign currency. It would be collected on all such conversions of domestic currency, and would be treated by partid be treated by participants in the foreign-exchange market as an added cost to each foreign-exchange transaction. The tax cost would be equivalent to the payment processing costs which, though very small, are currently paid on each foreign-exchange transaction.


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