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Meeting of European IFI watchers in Brussels

Added 24 Sep 2014

Last week the EuroIFI network – a European network of IFI (International Financial Institutions) watchers – met in Brussels for its 24th biannual meeting. The meeting was hosted by EuroIFI member CNCD – 11.11.11, a coalition of non-governmental organisations (NGOs), unions, social movements and solidarity groups in French-speaking Belgium.

The two-day meeting brought together around 30 activists from across Europe, and partners from the global south, to discuss a wide range of topics, including future prospects for IFIs. There was also time to reflect and share information about regional IFI interventions in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and Central and Eastern Europe (CEE).

Zahra Bazzi from the Arab NGO Network for Development (ANND) highlighted her network’s activities in 12 Arab countries, with a particular focus on International Monetary Fund (IMF) interventions. Zvezdan Kalmar (CEKOR, Serbia), Krenar Gashi (Kosid, Kosovo) and Akos Eger (MTVSZ, Hungary) focused on the World Bank’s activities in their region, with special emphasis on energy policies and projects.

Also up for discussion was the challenge of infrastructure financing and public private partnerships – a cross-cutting issue that is relevant for several IFIs, including the World Bank and the European Investment Bank.

Other topics addressed included the World Bank’s on-going safeguards review and procurement guidelines review, as well as discussions on the International Finance Corporation (IFC) – the World Bank’s private lending arm – and the World Bank’s Doing Business report.

The issues addressed will also be discussed at the official meetings and the civil society events of the IMF and World Bank Group annual meeting held in Washington DC in mid-October.