[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Sign on Letter to the WSSD

From:  rjr@web.net, halifax@web.net

To activists across Canada,

Thousands of citizens from across Canada and the US will be 
protesting the destructive impact of economic globalization in 
Washington, DC on Sunday April 16. The protests are targeted at the 
World Bank and the International Monetary Fund who will be holding 
their semi-annual meetings at that time. Organizers envision marches 
and rallies on the scale of the Seattle WTO protests. Parallel events 
including rallies and teach-ins will be held across Canada.

The Halifax Initiative, a multi-sectoral coalition committed to 
economic democracy and a strong critic of the Bank and the Fund for 
the last five years, is circulating the following letter for 
organizational signon. It will be released on April 14 at a press 
event in Ottawa and circulated at events in Canada and in Washington 
on the16th .

We are requesting the signon of senior representatives of Canadian 
NGOs only. We request only one signature per organization. Please 
signon in the following manner:
Wherever possible, please indicate the number of Canadians 
represented by your membership.

We urge you to circulate this letter within your networks to expand its reach.

PLEASE have your signon to us by no later than 5pm, Eastern time, 
Thursday, April 13, 2000. We apologize for the short time-frame and 
hope it does not prevent your endorsement. All signons to be 
forwarded to rjr@web.net

Any questions, please contact me in Vancouver at 604-915-9600 or Pam 
Foster in Ottawa (until the 12th when she leaves for Washington) at 

In solidarity,

Robin Round
Policy Analyst/Regional Coordinator
Halifax Initiative

PS: The letter is currently being translated. Contact me for the 
French version on Monday.

April 14, 2000

Dear Prime Minister Chretien

On Sunday, April 16, thousands of people will march in the streets of 
Washington to protest the role the World Bank and the International 
Monetary Fund (IMF) play in increasing global inequity, poverty and 
environmental degradation worldwide. Many Canadians will be in 
Washington or participating in solidarity events from Vancouver to 
Halifax. All will be demanding that the Bretton Woods institutions 
cease the destructive policies and practices that have exploited 
people and the environment to the benefit of a very few for 

Fundamental changes to the World Bank and the IMF are essential. We 
believe that the empowerment of working people and the poor, along 
with environmental
protection, must be made the primary objectives of the multilateral 
financial institutions. We will not be content with empty promises to 
repair social and environmental damage that the institutions 
themselves have caused. The IMF and World Bank must stop acting as 
enforcers for the exploitation of the land and its people.

To these ends, the IMF should stop managing the economies of 
impoverished countries. The IMF has eroded democracy and the capacity 
of the state to act on behalf of the people. The role of the IMF 
should be fully reassessed and changes implemented immediately.

The World Bank should be directed to operate entirely on behalf of the poor,
and at the service of the poor. Environmental protection must be made 
a priority, so that our children's children will have a future to 
inherit. World Bank investments must be fundamentally redirected 
towards renewable energy and sustainable agriculture and forestry.

This means an end to structural adjustment programs as imposed by 
these institutions. Structural adjustment lending forces countries to 
liberalize and privatize their economies and slash government health 
and education budgets. Additionally, this means the immediate 
cancellation of the debts of impoverished countries. The ongoing debt 
crisis must no longer serve as a lever to pry open debtor countries 
to the exploitation of their resources, both natural and

International capital must be brought under control, and made to serve the
people. We need the regulation of capital flows, and an end to the hemorrhaging
of wealth from the hands that generate it. The IMF must cease 
initiatives currently underway to compel countries to open their 
borders to the free flow of international finance, which was 
implicated in every financial crisis of the last three years.

We call on the nations of the world to re-evaluate the structures, 
policies and practices of these institutions. The peoples most 
affected by the policies and practices of the institutions as well as 
all parts of civil society must be fully represented in this process.

Canada has shown leadership in the struggle to reduce the crippling 
debt load of the poorest countries both bilaterally and through the 
World Bank and the IMF. We call on your leadership now to usher in a 
millennium marked by a just world economic order that serves the 
majority, one that engages only transparent, accountable and 
democratic multilateral financial institutions.


Cc:	Hon. Paul Martin, Minister of Finance
	Hon. Lloyd Axworthy, Minister of Foreign Affairs
	Maria Minna, Minister, Canadian International Development Agency
Jim Peterson, Secretary of State for Financial Institutions
	Tom Bernes, Executive Director for Canada, International Monetary Fund
	Terry O’Leary, Executive Director for Canada, World Bank

Get Your Private, Free Email at http://www.hotmail.com
This is the OPIRG-events@ox.org list. Announcement only please.
To unsubscribe, send email to opirg-events-request@ox.org, and put
"unsubscribe" in the body.
Archive at: http://www.sandelman.ottawa.on.ca/lists/html/opirg-events/