As inequality in Asia continues to deepen, civil society renews calls for IMF and World Bank to be held accountable for exacerbating inequality.
The IFC is set to expand operations in fragile and conflict-affected states such as Burma, despite indications that systemic problems identified in Honduras persist.
IFC investments in Burma hotels have been criticised for weak poverty reduction impact. IFC claims that investment in luxury hotels in India will provide “affordable hotels”.
The World Bank has announced big spending programmes in health, electricity and telecoms in Burma, however, critics point to its failure to protect human rights or consult properly with civil society.
IFC investments in luxury hotels and shopping malls highlight projects with weak development outcomes.
While India is pushing for the World Bank’s Global Infrastructure Facility, the US voted against IFC support for a Saudi Arabian corporation linked to coal power and an Inspection Panel case was registered for a Nepal power transmission project. Concerns were also raised on infrastructure projects in India, Nepal and Burma.
The Bretton Woods Project review of the most important developments at the World Bank and IMF in 2013.
In late 2012 the World Bank announced its first lending to Burma in over 20 years. The concern among many grassroots activists, however, is that the areas to which this money will be funnelled are still in the earliest stages of the peace process, and that huge influxes of money will undermine efforts for sustainable peace.
Notes of a meeting on Myanmar's transition to full country partnership at the World Bank/IMF annual meetings 2014
Sponsor: WBG (Operations Policy and Country Services Department) Panelists: Edward Mountfield (Manager, OPCS), John L.…
After leaving over suspended debt repayment in the late 1980s, the Bank officially returned to Burma, also known as Myanmar, in early August.
Minutes of Burma and IFIs meeting, Washington DC, 18 April 2012
Civil society groups from Burma have written to the heads of the IMF and World Bank requesting that the IFIs involve grass roots actors in their newly revived activities in Burma and that their operational policies "guarantee maximum transparency, accountability, social inclusiveness and safeguards".