A revised programme agreed between the Indonesian government and the IMF in September has led to few changes.
East Asia & Pacific
In a letter to Bank President, James Wolfensohn, the Japanese Network for Indonesian Democracy, called for the Indonesian Consultative Group meeting, scheduled for 17-18th October in Japan, to be postponed until the human rights situation improved.
The campaign by pro-Tibetan and other groups to press the World Bank to drop the China Western Poverty Project caused a major political battle at the institution during June.
In March, finance ministers from the South-east Asian Nations (ASEAN) postponed plans to create an Asian Monetary Fund after pressure from the IMF and the US government.
The Wall Street Journal ran an article on 4 May stating that “the World Bank badly mishandled an anti-poverty project that would resettle 58,000 Chinese farmers onto hotly disputed farmlands traditionally inhabited by ethnic Tibetans, according to a report by an internal bank watchdog panel”.
The Thai authorities and the World Bank, the main funders for the Pak Mun dam project, hailed the dam as a big success, but the World Commission on Dams (WCD) recently released a critical evaluation.
Sri Lankan NGOs wrote to their President in May urging him to open up the annual Aid Group meeting at the end of May.
NGO activists in Jakarta wrote an open letter to World Bank President James Wolfensohn in February, asking him to meet directly with the people to hear their own solutions to reverse Indonesia’s economic decline based on small-scale, local initiatives.
The President of the World Bank, James Wolfensohn, in Thailand in February for the UNCTAD meeting, refused to accept a letter from villagers affected by the Bank-backed Pak Mun Dam.
The World Bank said in late February that it would not guarantee the billion-dollar Nam Theun II dam in Laos until the government commits itself to significant political and economic reforms.
A South Korean court has rejected a lawsuit filed by a group of labour unions against the IMF for alleged policy mistakes.
In February, about 300 activists from the Student Federation of Thailand, the Forum of the Poor and labour groups burnt effigies of IMF managing-director Michel Camdessus and some Thai politicians in a protest in Bangkok where officials were attending the UNCTAD-X meeting.