News Release

World Bank: Helping the Poor?

With protests set for Washington in the next few days, these analysts on the World Bank are available for interviews.

BEVERLY BELL
Director of the Center for Economic Justice, Bell said today: “Throughout the global South, World Bank policies are devastating communities, environments, livelihoods, human rights, women’s status…”

KEVIN DANAHER
Co-editor of the new book Globalize This!, Danaher said today: “The World Bank takes our taxpayer money and uses it as collateral to issue bonds from major banks; that money is then used to create leverage over Third World elites. The World Bank lends these Third World governments money—on the condition that they will implement policies written in Washington and Wall Street. The Bank is actually sucking money out of these countries. India is paying back more than they’re getting…. We are organizing a boycott of World Bank bonds. Already many investment firms have signed on and it’s pending in several city governments. The movement is developing many different ways to democratize capital. We just forced Starbucks to offer fair trade coffee, which triples the income of 550,000 family farmers throughout the Third World.”
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DAPHNE WYSHAM
Coordinator of the Sustainable Energy and Economy Network, Wysham said today: “The World Bank and International Monetary Fund, like the World Trade Organization, are using public funds — yet are undemocratic, unaccountable, and advancing the interests of the rich and powerful. However, unlike the WTO, the Bank’s mandate is ‘poverty alleviation and sustainable development — a mandate it is clearly failing to uphold…. The World Bank continues to dole out billions of dollars a year in loans and guarantees to fossil fuel projects — the single greatest contributor to climate change. These projects benefit the likes of ExxonMobil and Chevron, but devastate local ecosystems and dislocate indigenous peoples.”
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CATHERINE CAUFIELD
Author of Masters of Illusion: The World Bank and the Poverty of Nations, Caufield is available for a limited number of interviews until Saturday. She said today that the risk of the Bank’s lending “falls only on the Bank’s borrowers, who must repay all loans, even those for failed Bank-sponsored projects. Since the Bank is not punished for defective projects or rewarded for good ones, it has no incentive to improve the quality of its lending. On the contrary, the need to make new loans so that its borrowers can repay old ones, means the Bank is under pressure to increase the quantity rather than the quality of its lending.”
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy: Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020 or (202) 332-5055

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