Bretton Woods Project - Critical voices on the World Bank and IMF

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Bretton Woods Update No.82 September/October 2012

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IMF commits gold windfall to PRGT, concerns this risks "entrenching" LIC debts

News|3 October 2012

As the IMF reviews lending facilities, it has decided to commit windfall profits to financing such lending, raising concerns that this may prolong poor nations' indebtedness. read article...

Unearthing the IFC's links to mining abuses

News|3 October 2012

Illustration by Robin Heighway-Bury/

As mining projects in South Africa and Peru face violent opposition, critics are questioning the stakes held by the International Finance Corporation (IFC, the World Bank's private sector arm) in the corporations at the centre of the controversies. New IFC funding for mining projects in Mongolia and Guinea is also causing alarm, leading to a call for a return to the recommendations of the 2005 Extractive Industries Review. read article...

World Bank safeguards under scrutiny

News|2 October 2012

With the World Bank's safeguards review due to be launched, indigenous groups and civil society organisations (CSOs) called for it to be rigorous and extensive. Meanwhile, the environmental and social track record of the Bank and its private sector arm, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), has come under scrutiny in India, Colombia and Brazil. read article...

World Bank making poverty worse in Kosovo

by Nezir Sinani

Comment|3 October 2012

Before joining civil society organisations (CSOs), I worked for Kosovo's state-owned power company for many years. During my time there I learned how the coal industry works and how much it negatively affects every segment of our lives. Already two years ago, Kosovan CSOs warned the World Bank that things would not turn out well for Kosovo should the Bank continue supporting and pushing for coal development projects in the country. read article...

Avoiding crashes on the financial "highway"? IFIs discuss role of state in financial sector

News|3 October 2012

The launch of the World Bank's new annual study, the Global financial development 2013 report (GFDR) and an IMF conference on financial crises, both in September, have renewed scrutiny of the Bank and the IMF's support for the development of private sector financial systems and the role their policy advice played in the global financial crisis. read article...

World Bank's climate record in the dark

News|2 October 2012

As the World Bank officially stepped into its role as interim trustee of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change's (UNFCCC) new Green Climate Fund (GCF), its track record on fossil fuel investments continues to raise concerns. read article...

World Bank lending facilities

by Alexandra Peck

Inside the inst|3 October 2012

The World Bank's investment lending (ILs) have been joined in recent years by new lending instruments, whilst IL itself faces an overhaul, as the Bank's operational policies come under review and pilots for the use of 'country systems' mature. The Bank is presently using four lending instruments: investment lending, development policy lending (DPL), Program-for-Results, and the World Bank guarantee program. read article...

IMF's "incompetence" and "failures" in Europe led to "suffering"

News|3 October 2012

The IMF's role as a member of the Troika, the grouping of the European Central Bank (ECB), European Commission and the Fund in the eurozone crisis, is attracting new criticism. Deepening recessions in eurozone nations have brought the efficacy and appropriateness of Troika-led reforms into question. read article...

No strings attached? Egypt to get billions in foreign aid subject to IMF conditionality

News|3 October 2012

Egypt has been in talks to get over $11 billion in foreign aid, of which at least $7.5 billion will be contingent on IMF approval, sparking concerns from activists over policies likely to be imposed by the Fund, just as it has ended its conditionality review. read article...

Revamped IMF surveillance: lacks influence?

News|3 October 2012

The IMF has modified its mandate for scrutiny of its members' economies, pushing for greater oversight of large important countries. Doubts remain over its ability to influence the policy process in its biggest members. read article...

IMF divided over capital flows management?

News|2 October 2012

IMF research staff have joined external critics in saying that capital account regulation should be more widespread and better coordinated across recipient countries, setting the stage for a contentious final debate on an IMF institutional view on capital account management at end October. read article...

Clare Woodford joins the Project

News|12 October 2012

We are delighted to welcome Clare Woodford as the new communications and research officer of the Bretton Woods Project, taking over from Ana Paula Canestrelli. read article...

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New website launched

You are now browsing an archive version of the Bretton Woods Project's website. This site has not been updated since September 2013, but may be used for reference material as the nbew site is being developed. However we suggest you look at the new website:

Recent briefings & reports

Memorandum to the International Development Committee: Inquiry on the Future of UK Development Cooperation  26 June 2013

The Doing Business review: a test of World Bank leadership 24 June 2013

Climate Investment Funds Monitor 7: April 2013  25 April 2013

Working paper: The private sector and climate change adaptation: International Finance Corporation investments under the Pilot Program for Climate Resilience  24 April 2013

The UK's role in the World Bank and IMF: Department for International Development and HM Treasury  13 March 2013

World Bank on jobs: a "significant departure" or "business as usual"? 13 February 2013

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