13 December 2023

A proposal for Ajay: No evolution without remedy

At this October’s World Bank and IMF Annual Meetings in Marrakech, we heard from the Bank’s President Ajay Banga, who prefers to be addressed by his first name, that the World Bank needs to evolve into a “better” and “bigger” Bank that operates at greater speed and scale. This raised concerns among civil society organisations (CSOs), like the two we represent, that have repeatedly witnessed environmental and social harms caused by World Bank projects. and experienced how difficult it is for affected people to secure redress for those harms. Despite our well-founded fears that a bigger Bank functioning at a quicker pace will cause more harm, we are prepared to offer Ajay a deal.

So, Ajay, here is the proposal: We can accept that the Bank must evolve and that “ending poverty on a livable planet” requires bold actions. In return, we ask that the Bank accept and bear the risks of those actions.

In other words, the Bank needs to add remedy to its Evolution Playbook.

Read the full article here.