International Finance Corporation

Monthly Issue Update - February 28, 2006

World Bank Fund Suspension in Chad: Local Implications for AIDS Work
The Chadian government recently amended their Petroleum Revenue Management Law for the Chad-Cameroon pipeline by removing the 'future generations fund' (10% of direct oil revenues are placed in an account for future use) to be able to access more oil revenues. This was due to a recent change in national priorities in favour national security and territorial administration, away from such issues as health care. The World Bank perceived this change as unacceptable and in January 2006 suspended their $124 million loan for eight active projects in Chad (See Issue Update Vol. II, No. 1). Three days of talks between the Chadian government and the Bank ensued. The discussions covered Chad's social spending and its critical budget shortfall, as well as the increases in border security to tackle the influx of refugees coming from the Darfur region of Sudan. Despite the changes made by the Chadian government, the Bank has maintained its suspension, and plans 'to safeguard the oil revenues intended for poverty reduction programs included in its original agreement with Chad.' A way forward is not clear.

CAO - Review of Marlin Mine - August, 22, 2005

Internal Review Slams World Bank over Lapses at Guatemala Mine - Backgrounder

August 22, 2005

A forthcoming report by the Compliance Advisor Ombudsman (CAO), a body responsible for conducting internal reviews at the World Bank’s private sector lending arm, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), identifies glaring deficiencies in the due diligence the institution conducted for a controversial new gold-mining project in Guatemala. The project, currently under construction by Canadian company Glamis Gold in Guatemala’s indigenous western highlands, has been surrounded by controversy and conflict since before the IFC approved $45 million in support for the project in June 2004. In January of this year, a forty-day protest by local villagers worried about the mine’s potential environmental impacts ended in bloodshed as security forces clashed with protesters, resulting in one death and dozens of injuries.

Press Release - August 22, 2005

Leaked Review Slams World Bank over Canadian Mine

August 22, 2005 - A leaked internal audit assessing the World Bank's involvement in a controversial Canadian gold mine in Guatemala has exposed glaring deficiencies in the due diligence undertaken by the Bank prior to approving a $45 million loan for the mine.

Glamis Gold's Marlin mine in the Western Highlands of Guatemala has been plagued with controversy since the outset. In March, the Compliance Advisory Ombudsman (CAO), the internal auditor for the Bank's private sector lending arm, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), began an investigation after receiving local complaints about the mine.

Monthly Issue Update - April 30, 2005

Halifax Initiative Analysis of Finance Canada Report to Parliament on Bretton Woods institutions
On the eve of the annual spring meetings of the World Bank (WB) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Washington, DC, the Halifax Initiative Coalition (HI) released a new report critical of how the federal government publicly reports to Canadians about its relations with the WB and IMF. The federal government is required, by an act of Parliament, to report to Parliament on the operations of the Bretton Woods institutions (BWI) annually. The government report for 2004 was released on March 22, 2005.

Monthly Issue Update - January 2005

Chirac Proposes International Taxes to Fight Poverty
French President Jacques Chirac, speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, called on all developed countries to substantially increase aid budgets to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Taxes designed to skim some of the wealth generated by globalization include levies on crossborder financial transactions, taxing aviation and shipping fuel, environmental taxes and air travel charges.


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