News Release

Interviews Available as D.C. Protests Get Underway: World Bank and IMF: Problem or Solution?

CAROLA KINASHA
Kinasha is with the Tanzania Gender Networking Program. She said today: “The World Bank continues to support ‘user fees’ on primary health care in Tanzania, despite the opposition of women’s groups to this policy, and despite the fact that this policy blocks access to health care for the poor.”
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SHELLY RAO
Coordinator of the Economic and Social Justice Program at the Ecumenical Center for Research, Education and Advocacy in Fiji, Rao said today: “We have been told by the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank that our countries’ debts are ‘sustainable,’ but our people lack access to basic education and health care while our governments use scarce resources to pay for debt.”
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RUDOLF AMENGA-ETEGO
National campaign coordinator of the Ghana National Coalition Against the Privatization of Water, Amenga-Etego said today: “The ‘cost recovery’ policies of the World Bank in Ghana led to a 95 percent increase in water rates in 2001. Poor people have lost access and now Ghana is second only to Sudan in the incidence of guinea worm, thanks to the privatization policies of the World Bank.”
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MARK WEISBROT
Co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, Weisbrot said today: “Our research shows that it is extremely likely that Brazil will default on its public debt; the only question is when…. The recent IMF ‘bailout’ did nothing to help the people of Brazil — it only helped foreign banks get their money out of the country.”
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MONTI AGUIRRE
Aguirre is the Latin American campaigner with International Rivers Network and is the co-producer of the film “Amazonia: Voices From the Rainforest.”
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JIM VALLETTE
Vallette is the research director for the Sustainable Energy and Economy Network and the author of “Transnational Corporate Beneficiaries of World Bank Group Fossil Fuel Projects, 1992-2002.” He said today: “Our new study shows that many energy corporations facing government investigation here and abroad for alleged accounting irregularities, energy market manipulation, fraud, bribery and human rights abuses have leveraged billions of dollars in World Bank Group financing over the past decade. These include Halliburton (the number two beneficiary of WBG fossil fuel financing at $1.97 billion), Enron (number 11 with $967 million), El Paso Corporation (number five with $1.5 billion) which has been found to have illegally manipulated the energy markets in California, General Electric (number nine with $1.1 billion) whose accounting practices and executive excesses have placed it on the corporate hot seat, as well as Harken Energy (George W. Bush’s old company) and Unocal, which a federal court this month ruled could be liable for human rights abuses associated with its Burma gas venture.”
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 332-5055; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167