In 1999, Amnesty International raised alarms about the killing of four indigenous people protesting a hydroelectric dam in Colombia that has devastated their food source and, if completed, would flood most of their land.
In 1998, an accident at a mine in Kyrgystan resulted in two tons of cyanide entering a river. A lack of an emergency response plan worsened the disaster, leaving two people dead and over 600 hospitalized.
US Congress passes new law aimed at increasing World Bank accountability Legislation to encourage greater transparency and accountability at the World Bank and other multilateral development banks (MDBs) was signed into law by President Bush, November 14, 2005. The reforms were contained in an amendment to the 2006 foreign operations appropriation bill proposed by Republican Sen. Richard Lugar, chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, as part of the FY06 Foreign Operations appropriations bill.
Wolfowitz Nomination - Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?
On March 31, the World Bank's Board unanimously appointed Paul Wolfowitz as the next President of the Bank. Mr. Wolfowitz is the US Deputy Secretary of Defense, and is often cited as the key architect and advocate behind the invasion of Iraq in 2003. Citing his role as Ambassador to the US Embassy in Indonesia, the State Department, and the Pentagon, US President George Bush said Wolfowitz would bring experience to the position of President both as a "skilled diplomat" and experienced manager.
The Honourable James Peterson
Minister of International Trade
125 Sussex Drive
Tower B, 5th Floor
Ottawa, ON K1A 0G2
R.e.: Disclosure of information at Export Development Canada
Dear Mr. Peterson
I am writing you on behalf of the Halifax Initiative Coalition, a Coalition of development, environment, faith-based, human rights and labour groups, regarding Export Development Canada’s (EDC) disclosure policy.
2005 Federal Budget
On February 23 Finance Minister Ralph Goodale released the government's Federal Budget. The budget contained several pieces of information relating to the International Financial Institutions and international development assistance. In general, the budget locked in the government's commitment from the 2002 UN Conference on Financing for Development to increase Canada's aid budget by 8% per year up to 2010. The budget confirmed a number of initiatives that were announced in advance of the budget release relating to the IFIs, including a 40% increase in Canada's contribution to the World Bank's International Development Association (IDA) and a multilateral debt-servicing package.
Mr. Fraser Reilly-King
153 Chapel Street, Suite 104
Ottawa ON KIN 1H5
Re: Compliance program file number 22364-1-2003
Dear Mr. Reilly King:
It was a pleasure to meet with you for lunch on December 2, 2004. I must thank you for the document you gave me at that time, a six page paper entitled: Comments submitted to EDC re lessons learned around the Cernavoda 2 complaint. The time taken to create such a thorough assessment is appreciated.
It is my intention to refer to your comments in the 2004 annual report to EDC's board of directors about the compliance program. These annual reports are made public in the springtime.
Moreover, the seven best practice standards to which you referred in your document will be used as supplementary material to the research already conducted as part of the review of EDC's compliance program for effectiveness and accessibility.
Mr. Gilles Ross
Acting President and CEO
Export Development Canada
151 O'Connor Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 1K3
Dear Mr. Ross,
In July 2003, the NGO Working Group on EDC, a Working Group of the Halifax Initiative Coalition, filed a complaint with EDC's Compliance Officer. The complaint alleged that EDC had failed to comply with a number of its policies in supporting the Cernavoda 2 nuclear reactor in Romania, and provided evidence to substantiate the allegations. EDC's Compliance Officer investigated the complaint, an internal audit was conducted, reports released in May and June, and the file closed on June 15th 2004.
Please find attached some comments outlining our experience in using this mechanism, and a number of broader and more specific recommendations on improving EDC's compliance mechanism that flow from the lessons we learned in filing the complaint and best practices among other institutions.