Dutch development bank FMO allegedly finances projects where land grabbing & other abuses occur; bank denies allegations

Author: Erik van Zwam, Trouw, Published on: 16 October 2019

[Note: This is an unofficial summary translation of the original Dutch article.]

...The Dutch development bank FMO finances a number of projects of companies where murder, manslaughter, intimidation, environmental damage, arbitrary arrests and land grabbing occur. According to those involved, the bank [...] does insufficient research into land ownership and abuses in the projects it finances...

FMO CEO Peter van Mierlo denies that there is a structural problem. "We have a list of problem projects that we are following," he says... "Incidentally, it is unrealistic to think that nothing ever goes wrong...

"We always carry out extensive research into fundamental rights, sometimes even more so than international standards require."

Nevertheless, independent complaints committees of the FMO concluded that the organisation had done too little research into the financing of dams in Panama and Honduras. An independent research institute of the International Finance Corporation [...] made the same assessment about the investment in a hydroelectric power plant in Guatemala...

Even when projects are discontinued, things sometimes go wrong. Research has shown that the local population often has little appreciation of FMO's exit strategy. The population is hardly compensated and is left behind with the misery, according to several projects.

According to FMO, there are always serious follow-up projects, but sometimes this is not allowed by local parties who do need it...

Read the full post here

Related companies: FMO