On 16 September the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) get together for their annual meetings in Singapore. The decisions the World Bank and IMF make affect the lives of millions, forcing poor countries to cut vital spending on health and education, or to privatise their public services.
Poor countries urgently need to have their voices heard, so that they can challenge the policies that affect their citizens. The way that the IMF is run is high on the agenda at the Singapore meetings. Our Chancellor, Gordon Brown, is chair of the IMF’s governing body and we need him to take action.
Targeting the annual meetings:
Poor countries get a rough deal from the strings and conditions attached to World Bank and IMF loans. These conditions often mean that debt relief is delayed, while vital spending on health and education is squeezed. One of the main reasons for this is that poor countries have almost no say in how these institutions are run, or the decisions they make.
The meetings will discuss how the IMF makes decisions, and while some better off countries like Turkey and Mexico may receive more of a say, the poorest countries in Africa could be even worse off than they are at the moment.
What is ActionAid calling for?
We are in support of reforms to give developing countries a greater voice in the decision-making of the IMF and the World Bank – decisions which have a major impact on the lives of poor people.
What the IMF and World Bank need to do: (Read here the whole article).