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Tuesday, April 01, 2003

The Bretton Woods Project's latest newsletter has just arrived and Earth-Info.Net is blown away by the detail + scope of it's coverage of the World Bank and the IMF!

A new study (The Challenges of Development, Mining Codes in Africa and Corporate Responsibility, GRAMA, 2003) from Canadian researchers led by Dr Bonnie Campbell examines the World Bank's influence in establishing mining codes in Southern countries.

It finds that the Bank's assessment of what was needed to attract foreign investment did not consider broader development objectives. Companies were granted low royalty rates and tax exemptions and allowed to retain much of their foreign exchange earnings in foreign accounts.

The study concludes by questioning whether "a country which deregulates and liberalises in order to be fully competitive... can indeed ensure the enforcement of environmental norms, [and] pursue development objectives that build backward and forward linkages to resource extraction... The answer appears to be more than uncertain."

See the African Civil Society Position on World Bank Group Investments in Mining, Oil and Gas at the Africa Consultation of the Extractives Industries Review (EIR) in Maputo, Mozambique for more details...