IFTI Watch

  • 22 December 2008

    World Bank, Others to Support CSOs with New Funds

    A new “Global Partnership Facility” holds the promise of new resources for civil society groups working on governance and anticorruption issues, including freedom of information and media development. The $65 million four-year initiative being administered by the World Bank is designed to “strengthen governance programs and further the fight against corruption,” according to a Dec. […]

  • 22 December 2008

    World Bank Emphasizes Demand Side in Cambodian Project

    Shifting strategic emphasis, the World Bank is taking a new approach to its work with Cambodia, one that among other things will mean funneling money to civil society organizations in an effort to stimulate demand for better governance. The new direction is known as “demand for good governance” (DFGG) and contrasts fundamentally from the traditional […]

  • 1 December 2008

    International Lenders Permit Georgia to Limit Release

    of Information; Groups Protest Lack of Transparency Transparency was a casualty when international donors gathered recently to consider emergency aid to Georgia. Civil society groups requested disclosure of the primary document to be discussed at the multi-donor conference — the “Joint Needs Assessment.” On the day before the meeting, a summary was released by the […]

  • 24 September 2008

    Bank Report Relates Media and Development

    Broadcasting, Voice, and Accountability: A Public Interest Approach to Policy, Law, and Regulation, a World Bank project, is a multi-author, book-length treatment that examines the relationship of the media to governance and development. The report also explores “the enabling environment for the media,” with special emphasis on “promoting plural and independent broadcasting.” The book is […]

  • 24 September 2008

    IMF Exploration of Governance Could Touch on Transparency

    The International Monetary Fund has launched a high-level examination of its own governance, a topic also probed earlier this year by an internal evaluation unit that recommended many reforms, including greater transparency.  The report by the IMF’s Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) makes a variety of suggestions for greater transparency by the Executive Board, along with […]

  • 24 September 2008

    Accra Agenda Transparency Langauge Called Unspecific

    The IATA announcement came as 1,200 delegates from 120 countries met Sept. 2-4 to complete the “Accra Agenda for Action on Aid Effectiveness.” Many civil society organisations dubbed the communiqué an “agenda for inaction.” Among other things, the groups wanted stronger language on transparency and more comprehensive disclosure of information. Without specifying how it will […]

  • 17 July 2008

    Annual Report Suggests Gaps in Routine Disclosure

    As its Public Communications Policy nears its third anniversary, the Asian Development Bank is coming up short of its own targets for routinely disclosing information and has frustrated civil society groups by denying several access requests. The ADB’s second report on the policy shows progress toward disclosure goals, but also indicates some gaps.  For example, […]

  • 16 May 2008

    Canadian Government Reports on IFI Activity Get Good Grade

    The Canadian government’s annual reporting on its activities at international financial institutions is getting better, according to the authors, and to a Canadian civil society group which recently gave the latest report its best grade ever. The Halifax Initiative said the report on 2007 activities merited a B+, up from last year’s rating of B-, […]

  • 16 May 2008

    GTI Calls EBRD Transparency Proposal Insufficient

    The Global Transparency Initiative April 8 expressed its “deep disappointment” at the Public Information Policy proposed by the management of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. In a letter to the EBRD Board of Directors, GTI said, “Taken as a whole, we are of the view that the EBRD is completely failing to take […]

  • 28 March 2008

    EBRD Issues Proposal on Information Policy With Few Changes

    The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has proposed an only slightly revised Public Information Policy (PIP) and is seeking comments by April 9. The draft policy will also be the subject of a consultation session to be held in conjunction with the EBRD’s review of its Environment and Social Policy. The revamped PIP essentially […]

  • 24 March 2008

    Russia Urges IMF to Disclose Key Governance Proposal

    The major ongoing discussion within the International Monetary Fund about how to revamp its voting structure is nearing completion but without the release of key recommendations by the IMF staff. While such opacity is typical for the IMF, freedominfo.org has learned that at least one country, Russia, has recommended that the staff paper be released. […]

  • 15 February 2008

    IMF Making Little Progress on Release of Article IV Reports

    The International Monetary Fund appears to have reached a plateau when it comes to releasing its key document assessing member countries. Despite its stated intention to make all Article IV reports public, only about four in five is released. About 20 countries still oppose issuance of the annual or biannual report assessing their economic policies, […]

  • 30 January 2008

    EIB Announces Additions to Web Site

    The European Investment bank is now publishing the provisional summary of decisions of its Board of Directors.The first such entry, for a Dec. 11, 2007, meeting is viewable here. The documents can be found under "Publications" in the section on the Board of Directors ("About" – "Structure" – "Governance"): The Board of Directors The entries […]

  • 30 January 2008

    World Bank Details Disclosure Plan for Fraud, Corruption Reports

    The World Bank in late January said it will disclose redacted reports on its fraud and corruption investigations, but not the resulting “action plans.” The Bank’s disclosure intentions came as part of its endorsement of the findings of an internal working group that reviewed a report by an outside group concerning the bank’s investigative operations. […]

  • 18 January 2008

    GTI Questions IMF Delay of Transparency Policy Review

    The Global Transparency Initiative has expressed concern about the decision by they International Monetary Fund to postponement review of the IMF Transparency Policy, originally scheduled for 2008. GTI wrote to IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn Dec. 17 after learning from the IMF’s External Relations Department that the next review of the Fund’s Transparency Policy, originally […]

  • 18 January 2008

    Zoellick Orders Release of World Bank Report on Corruption in India Projects

    World Bank President Robert Zoellick ordered the disclosure recently of a World Bank investigation showing “serious incidents” of fraud and corruption in five Bank projects in India. It was the first time the Bank had disclosed a “Detailed Implementation Review,” conducted by the Department of Institutional Integrity.  His action was praiseed by Transparency International-USA. A […]

  • 18 January 2008

    GTI Makes Comments on EBRD Public Information Policy

    The Global Transparency Initiative has proposed changes in the Public Information Policy (PIP) of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. The Bank is just beginning a review of its policy, having issued a call for comment in late November. The GTI comments are similar to those made during a 2006 EBRD policy review and […]


In this column, Washington, D.C.-based journalist Toby J. McIntosh reports on the latest developments in information disclosure in International Financial and Trade Institutions (IFTI).
Contact: freeinfo@gwu.edu or
1-(703) 276-7748