News Release

Interviews Available: What Kind of Globalization?


The World Bank and International Monetary Fund are holding their spring meetings in Washington. The following critics of those institutions are available for interviews:

Director of the 50 Years Is Enough Network, a coalition of over 200 U.S. grassroots groups dedicated to transforming the World Bank and the IMF, Njehu testified before the U.S. Congress on Wednesday. Today, she said: “Sub-Saharan Africa continues to pay back more to the World Bank and the IMF than it gets from those institutions. They should immediately cancel 100 percent of the debt of impoverished countries, as a bipartisan congressional commission recommended last year. Audits show that these institutions can do this from their current resources. The ‘structural adjustment programs’ these institutions have imposed require rapid privatization, liberalized trade policies that open the door to sweatshops, cuts in social programs, massive layoffs, restricted credit through high interest rates and a shift from food crops that feed the population to export crops like coffee and tobacco. Structural adjustment must end now.”
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Chair of the Tanzania Association of NGOs and facilitator of the Tanzania Gender Networking Program, Shaba is in Washington for the IMF/World Bank meetings until Tuesday. She said today: “As the World Bank and IMF have been in control of much of the global economy, we’ve seen the quality of life decline, more impoverishment, fewer children able to go to school, worse hospitals. Governments have to get approval for their policies from these institutions to get loans. But these loans are used more to pay back previous debts, rather than for the benefit of the people. African countries have been given a long rope with which to hang themselves. That is the debt trap. The policies of these institutions have fed greed. They are the descendants of colonialism. They are after economic domination and cultural homogenization.”

Co-author of Globalize This! The Battle Against the World Trade Organization and Corporate Rule, Danaher said today: “Those implementing corporate globalization are having to resort to secret agreements, water cannons and massive tear gas. In Quebec City, corporate representatives paid $500,000 to be on the inside of the fence. It was an illegitimate fence. The global democratization movement wants majority globalization — one based on human rights, open process and saving the environment.”
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Coordinator for the World Bank Bonds Boycott Campaign, which is modeled on the anti-apartheid divestment movement, Watkins, who is 24, said today: “The World Bank is trying to paint itself as an institution that promotes social welfare. But the reality is that the Bank continues to push policies like user fees on health care, privatization of essential services like water provision, and policies that suppress workers’ abilities to organize and raise their standard of living. We are using the boycott to demand an end to the World Bank’s policies which place corporate rights over human rights.”
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020