Sustainable development figures prominently in this year’s meeting of the Board of Governors of the Asian Development Bank’s with its chosen theme “Cooperating for Sustainability”.
The recently leaked Panama Papers all the more confirm what we already know about illicit financial flows – that there are massive sums of money stashed away in financial secrecy jurisdictions with the purposive intent to avoid and evade tax obligations and hide stolen wealth.
We in the Asian Peoples Movement on Debt and Development stand in solidarity with the Greek people as they struggle against the harsh loan conditions recently imposed by the European Union in exchange for a new debt deal.
The EU’s decision, pushed largely by Germany, came in the wake of the Greek people’s resounding referendum vote of “no!” to more austerity measures that in the past further exacerbated their poverty and deprivation and plunged them deeper in the abyss of debt. Widely scored as ruthless and vindictive, the new conditions consist of even more stringent measures that include additional VAT hikes, pension cuts, liberalization of the labor market, swift, far-reaching legislative changes and a massive selloff of valuable Greek assets amounting to $55 billion.
Two previous loan injections brought relief indeed – not to Greece, but to the European Central Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the vulture funds and bondholders and other financial institutions. Offered as “bailouts” for the Greek people, they bailed out instead the very entities whose actions caused this crisis, from irresponsibly and aggressively peddling loans, to imposing onerous and enslaving loan conditionalities.
MANILA, 17 July 2015 – The Asian Peoples' Movement on Debt and Development criticized the agreement from the third United Nations Financing for Development (FFD) summit in Ethiopia, which concluded yesterday.
:The outcome document is riddled with contradictions, reflecting the nature of the FFD process as a contestation between different paradigms and interests. Important passages under the Action Agenda reveal that the interests of big finance capital, private corporations, global elites and rich country governments have triumphed," said Lidy Nacpil, APMDD coordinator.
:The process has failed to even yield what would have been small but important victories such as the commitments to set up a global intergovernmental tax body, to scale up climate finance, and to study and pursue the issue of illegitimate debt," she added.