Oxfam reaction: Opening remarks at World Bank-IMF spring meetings

Robert Zoellick / the food crisis:

Oxfam spokesperson Luc Lamprière said: 

“The international community was skeptical when France put food at the center of the G20 agenda, but now the rest of the world is waking up to the fact that actions on this can’t be delayed.”

“Immediate action must be taken to address underlying factors driving food prices and volatility, which are excessive speculation and demand for biofuels. Governments must act to curb speculation through more transparency and regulation.”

“The World Bank’s action on the food crisis is welcome. Nearly one billion people suffering from hunger, and poor countries people regularly spend up to 80 percent of their income on food.”

“The World Bank has been ringing the alarm bells on the crisis for some time, but donors have been shamefully negligent in responding. Money promised to the Bank’s food fund has not materialized, and with food prices remaining volatile, the situation could deteriorate very quickly.”

“The Bank has woken up to the problems in agriculture but it can’t try to solve these problems itself, it’s got to work hand-in-hand with the UN system.”

Dominique Strauss-Kahn / Growth and jobs / capital controls

Oxfam spokesperson Luc Lamprière said: 

“Dominique Strauss-Kahn is challenging the G20 when he says there can’t be a business as usual approach to growth. The G20 talks about inclusive sustainable growth but it’s going to have to turn the rhetoric into action on a whole range of policies including fair tax systems.” 

“It's welcome to see the IMF at last accepting that capital controls are a legitimate part of finance ministers’ toolkits.”

 

 


Contact information: 

Caroline Hooper-Box +1 202 321 2967  / caroline.hooper-box@oxfaminternational.org