The World Bank’s draft framework for investment in the palm oil sector was met with dismay from civil society groups, who said that it failed to offer a credible strategy to address manifold social and environmental problems.
Ongoing mining projects’ impacts on rights, gender and the environment suggest a new approach to the sector is needed, as the IMF and World Bank dole out contradictory advice on mining revenues.
With the World Bank and IMF under consideration as significant sources of climate finance, controversy continues around the Bank’s Climate Investment Funds (CIFs) and carbon offset projects.
In September, the Bank released a progress report on the implementation of its 2003 water resources strategy, while criticism mounts over its hydropower lending, water resource management and support for private sector provision.
The World Bank is currently undertaking a major review of its controversial engagement in palm oil production, but critics warn that consultation has been inadequate and that the Bank seems to have already decided to continue investment in the sector.
As talks aim toward an agreement on climate finance in December in Cancun, fault lines remain about the role of the World Bank. Contradictions in recent Bank lending and contributions to alternative financing mechanisms have fuelled ongoing debates about the Bank’s role.
A set of voluntary principles for agricultural investment in developing countries, launched by the World Bank and other institutions in April, veils the promotion of investors' interests at the expense of host populations, warn civil society groups.
A spate of human rights violations and environmental abuses by mining ventures backed by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private sector arm of the World Bank, is raising alarm over the inadequacy of its social and environmental standards.
Participants reviewing proposed low carbon development strategies and Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation policies of the World Bank at a workshop on Indigenous peoples' rights, extractive industries and national development policies in Guyana, expressed dissatisfaction with the consultation process indicating that previous concerns were yet to be addressed.
As the International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World Bank, announces plans to increase investment in agribusiness by up to 30 per cent in the next three years, NGO reports shed light on the IFC's role in 'land grabs' and flaws in its approach to the food crisis.