Monday, April 16, 2012

World Bank Supports Harmful Water Corporations, Report Finds

Monday, 16 April 2012 09:36 By Johanna Treblin, Inter Press Service | Report 

Water privatisation has been proven not to help the poor, yet a quarter of all World Bank funding goes directly to corporations and the private sector, bypassing both governments and its own standards and transparency requirements in order to do so, says a new report released Monday.

People in many developing countries often lack access to clean water, but the approach to remedy this problem has shifted in recent years to rely more on the private sector. Yet, as this new report and several other watchdog groups have shown, the change has been more harmful than helpful.

Corporate Accountability International, the U.S.-based non-governmental organisation that published the report, has called on the World Bank to stop funding the private water sector and start redirecting its money to public and democratically accountable institutions.

The release of the report, entitled "Shutting the Spigot on Private Water: Case for the World Bank to Divest", coincides with the start of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund's 2012 Spring Meetings.

The World Bank's private sector arm, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), has spent 1.4 billion dollars on private water corporations since 1993, according to the report.  READ MORE

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