IFC adopts new environmental and social safeguard standards: final version to be issued in coming weeks

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Article
22 February 2006

Action by World Bank’s IFC on Workers’ Rights a Major Step Forward

Author: International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU)

he ICFTU has applauded yesterday’s adoption by the International Finance Corporation (the private sector lending arm of the World Bank) of a new loan performance standard on labour rights and working conditions. After the new standard is implemented in the coming weeks, all companies that borrow from the IFC will be required to abide by the core labour standards (CLS) as defined by the International Labour Organization (ILO). [refers to Grupo M]

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Article
21 February 2006

IFC Adopts New Environmental and Social Standards

Author: Intl. Finance Corporation (IFC)

The Board of Directors of the International Finance Corporation adopted today new environmental and social standards for the organization. The new standards build upon the environmental and social requirements that IFC currently applies to private sector projects it finances in the developing world. A new policy on disclosure, adopted at the same time, will increase transparency requirements...In approving the new set of standards, IFC’s Board requested some refinement of the language. Accordingly, the final version of the Performance Standards and Disclosure Policy will be issued as a complete text in the coming weeks.

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Article
21 February 2006

Press Release: IFC's New Standards - A Risky Step for People and Planet

Author: Bank Information Center, Bretton Woods Project, BothEnds, Environmental Defense, Forest Peoples Programme, Friends of the Earth-US, Indian Law Resource Center, International Accountability Project

Warning that the International Finance Corporation’s overhaul of its social and environmental standards relies too heavily on promises of good intentions, international civil society organizations have called the IFC’s new approach a risky experiment that could leave the people and environments affected by its projects more vulnerable than they were before...IFC’s new standards do not specify when consultation with local populations affected by its operations will take place, do not adequately protect the rights of indigenous peoples to their lands and natural resources—including their right to free prior informed consent, undermine existing World Bank policy with respect to resettlement, and do not require independent assessment and verification of project impacts, relying heavily instead on companies’ self-reporting. [refers to JP Morgan Chase, ABN AMRO]

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