Canada is one of very few countries to have an Executive Director on the Board of Directors of the World Bank and IMF, and all five Regional Development Banks (Asian, African, Caribbean and Inter-American Development Banks, as well as the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development). The Minister of Finance, who represents Canada on the Board of Governors at the Bank and Fund, nominates Executive Directors (EDs) to the institutions to carry out the day-to-day activities. Canada is the ED of a constituency that includes the Caribbean and Ireland.
To account for the activities of Canada's EDs at the Bank and Fund, Finance Canada tables an annual report to Parliament on its activities. In response to pressure from civil society, these reports have improved dramatically in recent years. That said, they have never been debated before Parliament, and were only referred to a Parliamentary Committee for the first time in April 2007. The last review of the Bank and Fund was completed in 1995, and no Canadian Executive Director has appeared before any Commons Committee since then. In 1994, the Special Joint Committee Reviewing Canadian Foreign Policy recommended that the ministers responsible for the international financial institutions and Canada's EDs appear annually before Parliament's Foreign Affairs and Finance committees. This has yet to happen. The Minister of Finance does meet annually with civil society, although these meetings are not public and they have become less of a priority in recent years.
We work to:
identify and implement measures to enhance the level of transparency and accountability for the activities of the Canadian government at the World Bank and IMF.