IFI governance

Background

CSO roundtable with World Bank Group executive directors

8 April 2014

Sponsor: World Bank Group

Panelists:  Merza Hassan (Executive Director for Kuwait, and Dean of the Executive Board of Directors), Victoria Tauli Corpuz (Director, Tebtebba: Indigenous Peoples’ International Centre for Policy Research and Education), Sara Aviel (Executive Director for the United States), Collins Magalasi (Executive Director, African Forum and Network on Debt and Development / AFRODAD)

*partial notes*

Sara Aviel, US alt ED

  • citizen engagement, achievement to make it a key pillar, believe could be one of the most transformational parts of the strategy
  • useful to hear what has worked and what hasn’t, now scaling up in a significant way

Collins Magalasi, Afrodad

  •  have been consulting with colleagues, clear lines coming through
  • a couple of years ago, trying to push in as much as we could, but times have moved on, the Bank is fast changing
  • just to reiterate that a lot is happening, interesting that the Bank is responding to some of the very clear asks, but would still want to see if there is proof of learning
  • my intervention would be more on whether lessons will be learned from the Bank’s own activities
  • lots of institutional build up, surprised to learn what the IFC has been able to do, MIGA what Inspection Panel has been able to do, in a positive manner
  • the function of the institutional integrity department, positively surprised
  • however, there is a sign of failure to respect the Bank’s own standards
  • IFC management could do slightly more, based on practice seen on the ground
  • Tendency to miss what has not been going well, fresh in my mind the findings of CAO office on a few selected cases
  • The Tata Mundra case in India, that were several weakness identified, coming from the WB’s own standards
  • Audit of FI lending shortfalls
  • Honduras Dinant case, is still not getting the attention it deserves
  • Would like to call on learning and standing by standards that the WB has set up, new opportunities, impressed by new policies, trying as much as you can to end poverty as the mission of the WB, but to what extent is the Bank going to act
  • Recent cases, eg Guatemala case, I didn’t expect these after what we have learned
  • Honduras, the message been what did the WB learn from its own standards and implementation, doesn’t seem to change on expected scenarios
  • Unless there is change and learning, the changes coming up may not be as promising
  • Special attention should be at the incentive system within the Bank, need to incentivise in bringing outcomes and results, incentives are more on bringing out as much money, how much are you incentivising outcomes, results – not how much money, end of poverty is not about this, but about what has that money done
  • Might want to reconsider the incentives
  • FI, we see more than half of the portfolio a bit outside the direct control of the Bank – important to see how the Bank would want to be fully in control of FIs
  • The landgrab case, in Cambodia, would be interested to see if there are instruments that can be applied

Gwen Hines, UK ED

  • we share a lot, agree not about money dispersed, about results – need to shift the culture of incentives
  • its about the last mile in the change process
  • its difficult as a lot of great staff at the bank thinking about results
  • UK pushes Bank to do tough things in the toughest places, manage risks as best you can, learn as you go
  • A project in DRC will have problems, need to deal with it as it happens
  • Learning from mistakes, Dinant is getting a lot of attention – briefing on lessons learned this week, also on FIs – we are taking this seriously, still work in progress

Q&A

Q: water and IFC practices, direct funding to water corporations, undermining HR to water and democratic practices. Often fails and conflict of interest. WB being both owners and adviser to government, eg Manila water – when will actions be taken to address these concerns.

Q: Gay activist Philippines, first LGBT delegation to spring meetings. How can these issues engage the Bank.

Q: Womens environment and development organisation, gender equality and gender rights, is it time to have a gender safeguard, how do we make it happen

Q: Tata Mundra, fishing grounds have been destroyed, have questions to ask – will you commit that IFC develops action plan with clear targets, timeline, IFC formally recognised it has violated its policies, should withdraw funding – how many more petitions do you need to develop a remedial action plan?

Jorg Frieden, Swiss ED

  • water can deliver private enterprises, doesn’t have to be – we are agnostic on who is providing a service as long as it is done in a fair way
  • last time we spoke about Manilla we had different assessments, if this is not true we will reevaluate situation
  • our presence is there to address problems, as long as partners are ready to work with us we should remain engaged.
  • Tata Mundra, you must be clear on what you ask us – to leave or an action plan, can’t ask for both
  • Should we stay away from the situation, we may have made mistakes but we are in and want to assume the responsibility – we should try to solve the problem, not go away
  • Can’t be both at the private investor and regulatory side, want WB and IFC to work more together to address these issues
  • Conflict of interest, this has been recognised, we are working on it
  • IFC and WB working together, not just public and private, generating the synergy

Merza Hasan, Kuwait ED – chair

  • we need to bring in our money to get others on board, showing that we bring our money to the table

Ingrid Hoven, Germany ED

  • LGBT, we can’t engage without social inclusion, part and parcel of development process
  • we may have overlooked things in the past, see how we can address it better in the future
  • try to get in close contact with the groups
  • statements made by president, we are in the beginning of a learning process
  • we have to invest to get the right expertise in place, design programmes, be prepared, knowledgeable on the situation on the ground
  • in the past some have said this is a no go area, if I look back we were a bit foolish, we are embarking on this process, how to invest
  • put into perspective, have to speak to our client countries about social inclusion
  • at the annual meetings probably ready to give more specific answers

Hasan

  • not an easy discussion, bear with us

Satu Santala, Nordics ED

  • gender, my view is that this institution has come quite far in promoting gender equality and women’s rights
  • on the other hand most of my colleagues feel that we have to do more, we have to push constantly to achieve more difference
  • gender safeguard – safeguards are there to ensure we do no harm, not sure if I would be content that we should do no harm, we should do much ore than that
  • safeguards just one tool in the toolbox
  • should be better at analyse
  • have to understand the gender differentiation
  • we have to monitor and learn better, overall have to do much more, but safeguards is an insufficient tool
  • now that we review our safeguards, we should include aspects, but not to overload the safeguards
  • have to find a practical way to look at the issue in the projects

Hasan

  • want to mainstream across the institution, not as a safeguard

Pierre, ED

  • we are seeing many of these cases, what do we do?
  • Can we sit here and wait, asking IFC to take a more proactive approach to scan projects
  • Especially since we believe the private sector plays a big role, 90% of jobs in the private sector, want it to be robust
  • Asking for portfolio upfront
  • IFC moving away from deal driven approach to select partners for long term development that believe in sustainable development
  • Won’t solve all the problems, but can’t prevent us from some difficult situation

Q: CSOs in Albania: power plant in Albania, contested and reached Inspection Pane, defective construction hasn’t worked one single day, now international arbitration

Q: Indonesia NGO, appreciative of Kim’s commitment to no dilution, important as we have a law enforcement – proposal to base much of safeguards review on EBRD safeguards, much weaker than WB and other institutions, not mandatory, insufficient disclosure, relies on client self reporting, etc, also use of offsets – what is your opinion about this and link to no dilution?

Q: IFC promotion of PPP model of water provision, cases in India – IFC holding up as success, but joint venture with repeated problems, including corruption, delays. PPP has not even received gov approval.

Amar ED

  • we are learning every day, trying to put things right when they are not doing what we expect them to do
  • we have safeguards and try to refine them, it’s a revolving process
  • management probably knows more than we do, but we do what we can
  • aspects of inclusiveness is in every part of our work, eg in CPF
  • we are taking the pre occupation into account
  • there are mistakes, but our responsibility to correct them, your responsibility to highlight them
  • we have instruments to deal with these complaints

Rogerio Studart, Brazil ED

  • I was here for the discussion on Albania, I had thought the measures taken made the institution accountable
  • Maybe measures weren’t sufficient
  • You can help make us accountable, sometimes we loose track, not because it wasn’t fundamental
  • Safeguards to protect us from do no harm
  • A lack of diversity, we have to many economists here, think about development as a process and the social context of development as an appendix of development
  • Have to look at social issues that are fundamental as a moral issue
  • Gender, we have been discussing this for a long time, we haven’t been able to address it properly
  • At the time we had a  gender report I was extremely positive
  • Heated discussion on discrimination based on sexual orientation at that time
  • The report made the point that gender inequality was wrong and bad policy for development
  • Surprised to see IMF follow our work on inequality, lower growth and lower spans of growth
  • We need civil society’s help, but uses the fact that we are flawed
  • A lot of emphasis put on the safeguards, not just a new safeguards – investment in people, need support to make the change

Jean-Paul Julia, France ED

  • PPPs, risks we are dealing with, going into difficult countries and situations
  • This is where we need the Bank, we will make mistakes
  • WB not good at admitting when we make mistakes, we have to change that
  • Good for us to understand when we are failing and why

Piero Cipollone, Italy ED (rep Albania)

  • Albania is fully dependent on hydro, idea to supplement, technical issue that the water intake not deep enough – doesn’t take water, but air, so the plant stopped
  • Whose fault was this, the project was approved by WB – technical assessment said the plant was ok
  • Fight over whose fault
  • Can be fixed, and plant recommissioned quickly – WB is moving to try to solve the problem

Q: Lessons learning, from Chad, mega project 7bn, was supposed to be transformational, but has done exactly the opposite, WB has walked away. What has WB learned from this?

Q: From Albania, poverty and safeguards, respect for human rights – what would be the right policy for the WB to promote gender, equality, sexual rights, and how we can help?

Q: Community based organisations, human rights, environmental impact assessments crucial to mitigate negative impacts, but also direct relationship with human rights. Every time impact on environment, impact on communities. There is environmental impact assessment, why not also human rights impact assessment.

Aviel

  • social inclusion and rights are key to development, a lot of work we need to do
  • need to be much better at looking at situation in each context, we need to do it upfront and over the course of the project, that we address risks – eg affected communities
  • more transformational projects, but we need to get the social and environmental piece first
  • poverty is about exclusion to a large extent, so need to address wherever we can

Swiss ED

  • env and social assessment led to conditionality
  • Chad government committed to transparency
  • Government doesn’t respect rules, this kind of conditionality doesn’t work
  • We are a partner in development, the risk for us is to trust the partner
  • This is just the beginning of the journey, if the government changes its mind, the partner makes mistakes – the linear conditionality is not an option

Hoven

  • we discussed lessons learned as a board, would like to get your feedback on the learning process
  • have been making the point repeatedly, have to approach risk in a holistic way
  • development impact matters also on your financial profitability
  • on a conditionality side, very difficult situation, need to build up the institutions
  • if you go into the risky areas, we need different type of engagement, more dialogue, it has costs
  • we have to have nore frank debate about the costs involved
  • want to see more open frank discussions on the real risks involved – to make sure we enter with open eyes
  • if we fail, we have to deal with failure
  • frank discussions of risks to make more informed decisions

Merza

  • we are pushing transformational impacts, you want consultation, we can’t tackle all the issues
  • the more you come with a joint agenda, the better

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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13 June 2005 | Inside the institutions

The executive boards of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund

contribution from Tom Scholar, UK executive director to the World Bank and IMF

Environment

Background

26 January 2005 | Inside the institutions

IMF and World Bank emergency response

The role of the IMF and World Bank in responding to emergencies and coordinating with relief efforts.

IFI governance

Background

26 July 2004 | Inside the institutions

The World Bank’s project cycle explained

The World Bank's public-lending institutions (IDA and IBRD) lend about US$ 15-20 billion annually to 100 countries to Projects ranging from infrastructure, education, health and government financial management.

Latest articles on this issue

IFI governance

Analysis

The Bank and IMF in 2017: Year in Review

While the Fund and Bank defended trade and globalisation, their rhetoric focused on the perils of inequality and need for inclusive growth

26 January 2018
The Coalition for Human and Rights and Development and #RaiseTheMic protested outside the World Bank Headquarters in Washington, DC April 2016. Credit: International Accountability Project

IFI governance

Analysis

The Bank and the IMF in 2016: year in review

The Bretton Woods Project's review of the most important developments at the World Bank and IMF in 2016.

17 February 2017

IFI governance

Background

Recommended resources on the World Bank and IMF 2016

The Bretton Woods Project's selection of the best books, reports and other resources on the World Bank and IMF from 2016.

2 February 2017 | Resource

IFI governance

Background

CSO roundtable with World Bank Group Executive Directors

Notes from a CSO roundtable with World Bank Group Executive Directors at the IMF/World Bank 2016 annual meetings.

4 October 2016 | Minutes

IFI governance

Analysis

One man, one vote, one option: World Bank set to coronate Kim for second term

The World Bank is set to reappoint president Jim Yong Kim for another five year term, despite persistent concerns from Bank staff and renewed calls for a merit-based process based on principles of transparency and diversity.

23 September 2016

Environment

News

World Bank’s new Forest Action Plan questioned

The World Bank has released its Forest Action Plan, but civil society raised concerns, including regarding lack of impact in light of the outcomes of the safeguards review and the links to the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility.

29 June 2016

IFI governance

Analysis

The Bank and the IMF in 2015: year in review

The Bretton Woods Project review of the most important developments at the World Bank and IMF in 2015.

29 April 2016

IFI governance

Background

World Bank EDs and CSOs roundtable

Notes from a meeting at the IMF/World Bank CSO Forum at the 2016 spring meetings between World Bank executive directors and CSOs.

17 April 2016 | Minutes

IFI governance

Background

Recommended resources on the World Bank and IMF 2015

The best books and papers on the World Bank and IMF from 2015.

10 February 2016 | Resource

IFI governance

Background

World Bank’s country engagement approach

This Inside the Institutions looks at the World Bank's new country engagement model, including the systematic country diagnostic and country partnership framework.

7 February 2016 | Inside the institutions