Private, for-profit schools in Africa funded by the World Bank and U.S. venture capitalists have been criticized by more than 100 organizations who’ve signed a petition opposing the controversial educational venture.
A May statement addressed to Jim Kim, president of the World Bank, expressed deep concern over the global financial institution’s investment in a chain of private primary schools targeting poor families in Kenya and Uganda and called on the institution to support free universal education instead.
On July 16th, governments adopted the Outcome of the Third Conference on Financing for Development, held in Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), called the “Action Ababa Action Agenda” (AAAA or the “Outcome”).
The broad-based disappointment of civil society with an outcome document that has very little to welcome was evident in statement after statement, including the collective one issued by the hundreds of CSOs in the Financing for Development Group. A number of process failures – that some delegates confessed to have never seen in a UN process before — converged to reach the poor outcome.
The Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax is a taskforce of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in Paris. It was given additional powers by the world’s leading powers following the global financial crisis.
Moves against tax havens and off-shore centres across the world had gone into abeyance for some time. But the new impetus meant many countries now aim to share information about their citizens and corporations.
Member States of the UN reached agreement on the outcome document that will constitute the new sustainable development agenda, to be adopted at the UN Conference in New York end of September 2015.
The objective is to end poverty by 2030, to promote shared economic prosperity and to protect the environment.
On how development institutions are financing the land grabbing in the Democratic Republic of Congo
The U.N.’s highly ambitious post-2015 development agenda, which is expected to be finalised shortly, has come fire even before it could get off the ground.
A global network of civil society organisations (CSOs), under the banner United Nations Major Groups (UNMG), has warned that the agenda, which includes 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), “lacks urgency, a clear implementation strategy and accountability.”
“We hoped for a progressive and fair financing agreement that addressed the root causes of global economic inequality and its impact on women’s and girls’ lives. But that’s not what we got." -- Shannon Kowalski
The World Bank is at a pivotal point as it enters into the third and final stage of its safeguards review. According to the Bank, this review is set out to "better address environmental and social issues that countries face today, [and] to deliver better environmental and social outcomes in the projects and programs the Bank supports."
The establishment of the Bank of the South marked a point of inflection in the projects of integration in Latin America, with the signing of the constitutive act at the end of 2007.
The Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) proposed the creation of the bank in order to provide financial assistance to the twelve member countries for the execution of regional projects.
The initiative of the Bank of the South will come into force this year after seven years of negotiations concerning various difficulties.
Delay is alarming due to cuttings in the projections of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean and the International Monetary Fund that estimate economic growth at 1 and 0.5% respectively for Latin America in 2015.
Climate change is costing us dear. Unless we rein it in, there will be more failed harvests, flooding in low-lying coastal areas, disease, mass migration and armed conflict over resources. Stopping it also comes at a price. It would mean completely switching energy generation, industrial production and transport systems to renewable energy sources – which is what the concept of climate protection means. Moderate estimates are that as of the year 2020, US$200 billion will have to be invested every year in emerging and developing countries. In addition, 50 billion would need to be invested annually in adaptation to climate change. This would include coastal protection systems for coping with rising sea levels, altering water courses or resettling communities in the countries affected, to mention but a few points.
The formal opening of the BRICS Bank in Shanghai on Jul. 21 following the seventh summit of the world’s five leading emerging economies held recently in the Russian city of Ufa, demonstrates the speed with which an alternative global financial architecture is emerging.
The idea of a development-oriented international bank was first floated by India at the 2012 BRICS summit in New Delhi but it is China’s financial muscle which has turned this idea into a reality.
The New Development Bank (NDB), as it is formally called, is to use its 50 billion dollar initial capital to fund infrastructure and developmental projects within the five BRICS nations – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – though it is also likely to support developmental projects in other countries.
‘Ashamed of being European’, I wrote one month ago. And after the devastating week-end of negotiations with Greece, I have even more reasons to be so.
The Greek prime minister and the Greek people have been humiliated and were forced to accept an agreement that cannot bring any solution for their sufferings. And now, inevitably, some people are shouting: ‘treason’, pointing to Syriza…
But is this justified? Had Tsipras any other real choice? Let us look at these questions.