Some 20 companies have filed suits with World Bank arbitration arm, the International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), against the Argentine government for damages caused by the ‘pesoficiation’ of the economy in 2002 and the freezing of public service rates. The Argentine government has taken the first steps to allowing rate increases – in return, it has asked the firms to suspend their claims. Spokespersons for the companies argued that it wasn’t clear that they could suspend a claim in an international tribunal, however the ICSID legal team clarified that they were free to do so.
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Last year BRICS' leaders agreed to launch a BRICS development bank. Whether this is considered positive depends in part what questions are being asked. Sameer Dossani of ActionAid International highlights the flaws in the World Bank and IMF, analyses whether a BRICS Bank could be different from these institutions and proposes what it should do and what it should look like.
The Bretton Woods Project is an ActionAid hosted project (UK registered charity no. 274467).