Monday, March 29, 2004

"Rich country governments have failed to provide financing they promised under the "Education for All Fast Track Initiative" (FTI) to help fund universal primary education in poor countries, according to a World Bank report.

The scheme - intended to help countries meet the Millennium Development Goal of providing primary education for all children by 2015 - is suffering from a lack of financing, according to a report by World Bank staff." Full story Financial Times.

As bad as it sounds, it is not what it seems. The countries elligible for this program are only those who are working closely with the IMF and the World Bank, restricting elligibility only to those who will fit the endorsed education policy. But working closely with the IMF has a catch. In order to receive IMF funding, one must do as the IMF says. This, as seen in countries like Brazil or Jordan, can have dire consequences for the poorest stratum of society.

For an editorial on whether trade exploits or benefits developing countries, see this report.

Congress member Cynthia McKinney from Georgia has written a highly controversial letter asking the US to press for IMF reform over lending policies. That, as we all know, has yet to happen.


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