The World Bank’s board of directors recently approved an investment guarantee for the $590 million West Africa gas pipeline in November, despite strong civil society resistance. The pipeline will transport natural gas from the Western Niger Delta area of Nigeria, to Togo, Benin and Ghana. After funding the initial feasibility studies for the pipeline in 1992, the Bank has now provided a $125 million investment guarantee to encourage private investors to come up with the remaining $465 million. Friends of the Earth Nigeria charge that the pipeline “is being implemented in total disregard of environmental and livelihood concerns of Nigerian communities.”
After 4 years of on-off negotiation and public opposition, the government of Egypt has signed a loan deal with the IMF whose impacts civil society fears will encroach upon human rights, social protection and social provision, like health and education, upon which the poorest depend.
Investments by the World Bank-hosted Global Financing Facility (GFF) do not reflect the family planning priorities identified by developing countries and local communities. The GFF also continues to suffer from a lack of transparency and meaningful civil society participation, raising doubts about the new mechanism’s effectiveness.
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