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INTD 200 (186)

World Trade Organization, World Bank, IMF

4 Pages

International Development
Course Code
INTD 200
Karen Mc Allister

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World Trade Organization, World Bank, IMF - 3 instits supposedly set up pursue goals of peace, devel, HR - Unfortunately, times in their history where they have clashed strongly w/UN devel agencies - World Bank + IMF = Bretton Woods Instits  WTO is not a Bretton Woods Instits - Group these 3 together b/c all clashed w/goals of UN devel agencies + UN on certain issues relating to issues of HR + devel Conflict and Contradiction in the International Development Multilateral System (Especially in Respect to Development and Human Rights) - Disagreements b/w IFIs + WTO vs devel agencies of UN in respect to def of devel, structural adjustment policies, conditionality for loans + grants these organizations made - Also serious disagreement b/w WTO + devel agencies of UN over econ glz + applicability of econ/soc/cultural rights - World Bank + IMF = Bretton Woods Instits, created @Bretton Woods in 1944 - Purpose @end WWII: ensure econ stability + deal w/poverty reduction - Became controversial + widely crit b/c according to NGOs + academics, weren’t doing that,  Poli left: throughout world accused them entrenching poverty + exasperating gl/inequality  Poli right: IMF + World Bank too bureaucratic + ineffic  As glz became more prominent, weren’t necess anymore - These IFIs over time used their financial influ to push ahead SAPs  These meant forcing on nats free market sys, laissez-faire econs, cutbacks on soc programs, austerity programs  In doing this, said they were promoting strong + stable econ growth  H: critics, said they were doing opposite  Debate go on for quite some time - Finally in response to crit, in late 1990s/ea2000s, IFIs began to change policies + came closer to UNDP + other specialized agencies working in devel + HR  Began to inclu in their programs such goals as: good governance, empowering poor (which they were supposed to do in 1 place in 1944 H: got caught up in Chicago School Econ + forcing this kind econ on devel’g nats) - IFIs set up mainly after war on initiative of US + UK who wanted to create internat econ sys that promo trade + provided rules to guide econ relations b/w nat - Believed WWII was in large part b/c econ conflicts in 1930s b/w maj Eur powers  Currency manipulation  44 nats that came Bretton Woods agreed w/US + UK that econ anarchy which existed in 1930s had to be avoided  H: no consensus on precise character of new economic order  Due to econ strength of US, their viewpoint prevailed (we need more free trade, free markets, fixed exchange rates) - World Bank (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development) - 187 members, 10 000 employees, head offices Washington, D.C. - 1960: set up sub-organization – International Development Association (IDA)  Concentrate on very poor nats - Purpose: provide low interest loans + in s/cases grants, to devel’g nats for capital programs  Original charter: goal = reduction of poverty  Initially: provide financing for post-war reconstruct + financing for Eur  Result of Marshall Plan to help Eur get on its feet economically, did a lot of things that World Bank was doing in Eur  shifted its focus fr/Eur to devel’g world - Major policy body = board of governors (usually Ministers of Finance of member nats)  Meet once a year in conference to decide on major policy issues  Major decision on day to day basis = 25 member executive directors  Approve/disapprove loans  @World Bank, voting is weighted in favour of largest financial donors, therefore US as largest donor has dominant position in voting @World Bank  President of World Bank has always been American  Voting = based on quota subscriptions to Bank (also done like this for IMF)  Based on GDP (pay more into Bank to provide for funding)  Voting procedures of World Bank + IMF diff fr/all other UN specialized agencies, UN GA where 1 nat has 1 vote  Americans + Brit argued it would be unworkable to have sit where borrowers of $ fr/World Bank could outvote those who were lenders  Voting sys leads to lots of unfair sits:  Heavy indusz nats hold 60% of voting rights, US = 17%  Since need 85% to amend World Bank constit, US has veto  Certain nats asked to rep smaller nats that are not on executive board  46 sub-Saharan Afr nats only have 2 reps on executive board  Led to serious poli infighting @World Bank esp b/c mainly controlled by US + allies  Harsh action against Cuba when didn’t agree w/Cuba  Dealt strange way w/dictarships in Lat Am (s/times favouring them)  Approved loans to nats w/dubious HR records - 1945-1968: low level of lending in World Bank  Conservative in giving out loans, strict condits, favoured market economy model st  1 World Bank loan = France  France had coalition gov, s/members Fr Communist Party in gov  World Bank said they would not give them loan unless kicked out Communists  France got loan but had to give into demands/condits of World Bank  When World Bank fr/Eur to devel’g world in 1950s, financed principally state devel projects related to infrastruc (roads, railroads, airports, hydro-elec dams)  H: condits for repayment were so strict that very poorest nats couldn’t get loans  1960: set up International Development Agency
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