IFI governance


Safeguard policies review

17 April 2015 | Minutes

Sponsors:  World Bank Group Operations Policy and Country Services (OPCS) Vice Presidency

Panelists: Peter Bakvis (International Trade Union Confederation), Mohammed Loutfy (Lebanese Physical Handicapped Union), Victoria Tauli-Corpuz (UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples), David McCauley (World Wide Fund for Nature), Chair: Edith Jibunoh (Civil Society Advisor, World Bank)

Chaired by Edith:

Welcomes CSO engagement through various means, including protests.

Stefan Koeberle, Mark King,

Panelists from CSOs – Peter Bakvis, WWF, Lebanese Disabled Organisation (Muhammad)

This is an update session: Staff presentation and CSO feedback.

Stefan Koeberle, Director for Operations:

Safeguards has preceded ongoing re-structured, which has somewhat complicated the messaging.

Wishing to maintain core of SG.

Objectives – better development outcomes – focus on implementation and results. Much stronger emphasis on accountability – clients and communities.

Building partnership with and capacity of clients. Requires different approaches to reflect diverse capacities.

54 Client countries, 8 IP consultations – most extensive consultations ever taken. Including AIIB – no race to the bottom.

Very grateful for specific comments and suggestions – ie. Focus on substantive input.

Not easy to reconcile sometimes opposing and very deeply held positions – consensus is required among board members.

Currently deliberation phase – next to CODE, after- either revisions or third phase of consultations. Need permission from CODE to release framework.

Expect significant changes to initial draft. Still receiving written commitments from shareholders (France/ US recently).

Mark King:

Proposed changes – caveat – staff and management is restricted to proposals only. Board obviously makes final decision. Wide variety of opinions.

2700 pages of written submission and notes. Also inclusive of inter-agency discussions (ILO, OCHR).

WGs established for each procedure, vision, policy – inclusive of global practice and legal. IFC and MIGA. About 50 people looking at issues.

FI – quite a bit of diversity. Some proposing no standards at all.

IP –

Sustainability – biodiversity – meeting with CSOs resulted in quite significant changes.

Land titling – also area of work.

Risk assessment – will add more clarity.

Key Points:

ESS1 – welcomes non-discrimination. However some governments concerned about implementation. Some requested deletion of categories.

Working to clarify risk categories.

Clarifying use of borrowers systems. HR – some more explicit mention of do no harm. Inclusion of explicit mention of instruments. Non-funding of programmes that are linked to HR abuses… opposed by some.

HR – revisiting Vision Statements – WB helps countries to meet rights commitments…

Labour and working conditions – standards did not go far enough, collective bargaining is now include, broadened scope and freedom of association. Working to link SG with ILO convention. Meeting frequently with ILO.

Resource Efficiency – pre-empting climate negotiations. Must cover climate change better.

ESS5 – Land:

Consistent concern with land titling – clarifying wording. Also lack of gender coverage – this is being revisited.

Biodiversity – Off setting now last resort and at times not appropriate.

Changed terminology to reflect community usage.

Alternative Approach – proposing to drop it from the standards. FPIC – and extractive-led eminent domain.

Indigenous vs. marginalised groups focus (largely from African standards).

FI – extend requirements to substantial risks…

ITUC: 162 countries 2/3 in Bank’s client countries

Focused primarily on ESS2 –

Consultation process: were present in many consultations. Encountered some initial obstacles. Glad to say that they were responsive. No further problems.

Had an opportunity to have voices heard.

Major concerns with initial draft:

  1. Scope of coverage – contract workers excluded (infra). Also limited coverage of public employees.
  2. Lack of requirement that all core labour standards – de facto requirement for ILO membership.
  3. Many MDB banks include core standards (IFC, EIB, AfDB).
  4. Many governments supportive and one presumes are the ILO.

Meeting with experts on labour – fruitful as most were pushing in the right direction.

WB presentation seems to respond to points/ concerns raised.

Creation of new AIIB – no mention of labour rights to date vs. mention of environment responsibility.

Must address DPL, FIs also requires more attention.

Implementation remains a challenge. Requires rapid response/ grievance mechanism. On paper IFC standard is good – however waiting on response to Colombia complaint since 2011.

David McCoully – WWF

Climate and Environment focus:

Very high stakes – ‘world is watching’ / influence on other MDBs, including commercial banks – over time reflection in Equator Principles. Primacy of concern with governments.

Consultation – things did improve. Questions the use of term ‘Consultation’ – not sufficient advance notice…

First draft – terminology – ESS6 – very confusing terms on critical terms. Encouraging to hear that these are being considered for edits.

Encouraged by discussions with experts group – however will reserve judgement. SG staff have made themselves available, which was appreciated.

IP – welcomes dropping it.

On climate change – would like alternatives more clearly identified. Must focus on upstream. Alternatives must be systematically considered upfront.

Resilience – some ability to work on do no harm – on climate change – IDA 17 requirement. New tool being developed on climate.

Concerns remain about implementation – budget and division of responsibility.

Second draft must be used as a pathway to use of borrowers systems – ie, this must move beyond project-specific ‘only’.

DPI – Disabled People’s International / Lebanese Physical Handicap Union

Quite happy with involvement of the disabled in consultation process. However:

Universal access and inclusion standards – In some events there was no account taken of accessibility issues. Eg – Morocco – no wheel chair access. Thus Bank must include these considerations into infra and procurement activities.

Bank must expand perspective beyond social protection – avoid double standards – must ensure approach does not support stigmatisation of the disabled.

SDG – disability dropped from first goal on poverty reduction.

More commitment to implementation – Bank must show greater openness to engage grass roots. Still facing capacity constraints broadly – within Bank, government and civil society.

Would like disability Vision statement to include reference to UN Convention.

Vicky – UNSR for Rights of IP

Consultations with IP – country-level and regional consultations. Also recently global consultations, including UN reps. Meetings with President, EDs, senior management.

IP common position developed by community:

  1. Demand – delete Alternative Approach – this seems to be moving in the right direction. African commission able to meet with African EDs. However potential waiver still remains? No evidence that supports that recognition of rights leads to conflict.
  2. States have an obligation at any rate.
  3. Other issue FPIC – focus on consent. Must look at continuum. Consultations do consent make.
  4. Apply SG to P4R, DPL, = sequencing being considered.
  5. Collective rights to land vs. collective attachment as per UN Declaration.

Special Rapporteurs – balance on the need of the Bank to push countries to comply with rights obligations with flexibility to defer. HR should be benchmark. Too much flexibility – understand issue of ownership.