Leaflets with sharply contrasting views about the International Finance Corporation (IFC) were distributed at the Spring meetings.
The 50 Years is Enough! campaign coalition urged the abolition of the Corporation, charging that:
“They pay almost no attention to who actually benefits from the profits that they claim to generate. They support Domino’s Pizza in South Africa and cable television in Brazil. They invest in breweries in Romania, Russia, Tanzania and the Czech Republic, expensive private schools in Pakistan and Uganda, and luxury hotels in Egypt, the Maldives, Vanuatu, Costa Rica and Mexico.”
The IFC‘s NGO relations team swiftly produced a rebuttal, arguing that: “IFC, through advice and direct investments, seeks to reduce poverty by helping direct private resources toward activities that benefit the poor by growing businesses that earn their way and empower and employ people.” The IFC plans further work on promoting environmental, social and corporate governance standards.
A collaborative report documenting case studies of IFC projects will be produced by a number of NGOs, including the Bretton Woods Project, in time for the September annual meetings of the Bank and Fund.