Cut the Strings!
Download the full report using the link on the right.
This new report, Cut the Strings! Why the UK government must take action now on the harmful conditions attached to debt cancellation, was produced by Jubilee Debt Campaign with the support of ActionAid, CAFOD, Christian Aid and WDM. It explains how conditions are attached to debt cancellation, and how they undermine democracy, hurt the poor, delay justice and contradict government promises.
For instance, the report finds that:
- Inflexible and excessively burdensome conditions are causing appalling delays in delivering urgently-needed debt cancellation. More than half the countries still going through HIPC in September 2006 entered the scheme more than five years ago.
- The seven countries going through HIPC that entered more than a year ago have, since entering, given $1.5 billion in debt payments to the rich world. All but one have had to spend more on debt service than on health.
- Many conditions require countries to implement controversial policies regardless of the views of citizens, parliaments or even governments.
- Privatisation is frequently forced through by debt conditions, often with disastrous consequences.
- The UK government has stated publicly that policy conditions attached to aid are “inappropriate and… ineffective”, and the G8 in 2005 promised to let countries determine their own economic development. Yet countries are still being told they must meet economic policy conditions to get debt cancellation.
The report calls on the UK government to put pressure on the international financial institutions - including by withholding funding - in order to ensure that there is an end to externally-imposed conditions attached to debt cancellation.
You can download it here, or from the link on the right.