Tag Archive for: Global Governance

On January 7, the world was surprised by the untimely resignation of World Bank President Jim Yong Kim. With three years left to finish her second term, Kim stepped aside to take a position within the private sector. A possible conflict of interest and transparency in the definition of the Bank’s leadership, key issues.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”.

Abruptly and unexpectedly, the president of the World Bank (WB) Jim Yong Kim, resigned his mandate to undertake a new job in the private sector. According to the official communiqué of the WB, during the term of Kim, special attention was paid to investments in infrastructure. He assured that the key to the advancement of the developing nations was the support and investment in this sector. For this reason, Jim Yong decided to step aside arguing that his work for global development would be more fruitful from the firm ‘Global Infrastructure’, a multinational company specializing in infrastructure investments for the water, energy, transport and waste sectors. .

Kim’s departure has not gone unnoticed, and numerous civil society organizations around the world have emphasized the possible conflict of interest in Kim’s surprise decision and wonder what will happen from this? In particular, they have raised a series of concerns:

  • Financing for development through the private sector:

According to the now ex-president of the WB, worldwide there is a deficit in infrastructure that would be around the trillion dollars. This amount, in no way can be covered, not even with the portfolio of all the institutions of financing for the development (IFIs) together. In this regard, Kim, during his tenure, has tried to ensure that financing for development, no longer oriented to the public sector, to turn to the private sector. In this way, the WB and other IFIs have increased their investment portfolio to financial intermediaries and other companies / private corporations. Kim’s decision to continue his professional career in the private sector raises doubts about the underlying interest in the decision to orient the World Bank towards the private sector. In other areas of interaction between the public and private sectors there are window periods during which those who have decision-making roles are prohibited from changing their sector (“cooling off periods” in English). The inexistence of similar mechanisms in the World Bank inevitably calls into question some of Kim’s decisions that in practice expanded financing to the private sector.

The change towards private financing, although it could be beneficial in economic and financial terms for the States, maintains concerns for environmental sustainability and respect for human rights. Recently, there seems to be a positive correlation between the increase in projects financed by companies and the growth of negative impacts on people’s lives and the environment. In addition, it is important to remember that during the mandate of Kim, the revision of the social and environmental safeguards of the WB – the regulations that establish criteria for the projects that the World Bank can support -, far from representing a strengthening of the policy, meant the transformation of these standards, a normative framework much more lax. The resignation of Kim then, leaves open the door to ask if the next president of the WB will have as a priority private funding, and if so, how the institution can adapt to international and national standards regarding respect for Human Rights.

  • Transparency and accountability at the institutional level in IFIs:

Other questions that have arisen after this event, have to do with the next president of the WB and its selection process: Who will succeed? What will the process be like to elect the next president? Will the government of the United States be in charge of targeting the person who assumes the presidency, as has happened on previous occasions? In what way can the WB’s governance be more transparent when it comes to electing its authorities?

At the global level there is a tacit agreement that, since the beginning of the Bretton Woods system, has established that the head of the World Bank would be defined by the United States and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) by Europe. Over the years, this has been respected to the letter, with the White House, which has pointed to the president of the WB. Kim was no exception to this practice and was nominated by the government of Barack Obama. This process that has been taking place has little transparency and has always ended up transforming the World Bank into an executing arm of US government policies. In these times, a WB president appointed by the administration of Donald Trump would be risky when thinking about the performance of this institution on issues such as climate change and human rights in general.

Beyond the effects of a WB president appointed by the Trump government, Kim’s departure opens a series of questions about the bank’s governance and transparency in the appointment of its authorities. It is necessary to establish a transparent selection process in which all candidates have equal opportunities to occupy the position. The Chair of the Presidency of the WB must be occupied by a truly qualified person who has as a priority the execution of investments under the umbrella of sustainable development and human rights. The history of secrecy behind each WB president has impacted on the credibility of the institution. This vacancy, now, means an opportunity for the WB to reposition itself within the international system as an independent actor.

From now on

Kim’s departure for ‘Global Infrastructure Partners’ (GIP) has raised doubts about the appearance on the door of a possible conflict of interest. The multinational GIP is responsible for investing in infrastructure for developing economies, this being the main sector of interest of the WB. It is important to follow up on plausible agreements to be finalized between both institutions.

Regarding the vacancy for president, the WB has announced a nomination process for candidates that will be open until mid-March 2019. The civil society will be attentive and making a detailed follow-up of everything that happens to seek the transparency of the process. It will remain to be seen, once the next president is selected, what their main management guidelines will be and if they respond to the true development needs of communities and populations around the world.

More information

Gonzalo Roza – gon.roza@fundeps.org
Agustina Palencia – agustinapalencia@fundeps.org

On October 30, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) published a communiqué inviting civil society organizations and other interested social actors of the Organization of American States (OAS) to send information on the situation. of human rights in the region. This information will be used for the preparation of chapter IV A of the annual report of the IACHR corresponding to the year 2018 that will be presented to the General Assembly of the OAS.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”.

Each year, the Commission produces an annual report on the human rights situation in the region, reflecting the trends, challenges, advances and good practices that have occurred in the area of ​​human rights in the OAS member states during the year.

For the Annual Report of 2018, the Commission will emphasize the following axes: Democratic Institutionalization, Institutionality in Human Rights, Access to Justice, Citizen Security and Right to the Environment.

Together with lawyers and lawyers from the Argentine Northwest on Human Rights and Social Studies (ANDHES) we present a report on these axes in the areas we work on:

Institutionality in human rights

1. Hierarchical reduction of National Ministries of Environment, Culture, Health, Labor and Modernization and Communication
2. National Budget 2019
3. Comprehensive Sexual Education Law in danger

Access to justice

1. Preoccupation with the draft bill on collective processes
2. Access to the right to abortion in Argentina – Delay of justice in the case of Portal de Belén (by non-punishable abortion protocol in the province of Córdoba)
3. Access to justice for the elderly

Citizen security

1. Institutional Violence in Tucumán
2. Absence of mechanisms to prevent torture in Tucumán

Right to the Environment

1. Affectations to the right to health caused by the use of agrochemicals
2. Concern over project to amend the seed law
3. Failure to comply with the consultation and free, prior and informed consent of provincial law No. 5,915 to the detriment of the environment and the right to life and territory of indigenous communities in Jujuy.
4. Chinchillas Mining Project and the Pozuelos Lagoon in Jujuy
5. The indigenous community of Solco Yampa and the indiscriminate felling of trees in the province of Tucumán
6. Murder of Javier Chocobar in Tucumán

The cases presented in this report give an account of a general situation of regression of the fulfillment of human rights by the Argentine State. The exposed situations of vulnerability are particularly worrisome because they are part of a regional socio-political crisis context. In order to avoid the impact of cuts, the noncompliance with international standards and the promotion of public policies that do not attack the roots of structural inequality impact fully on the populations that are already in a situation of vulnerability, we ask the IACHR to publicly express concern about the state of compliance with human rights in the country.

More information


Mayca Balaguer, maycabalaguer@fundeps.org

We participated in the call of the Working Group on the Gender Perspective in the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, in order to comment from our experience on the relationship between business activities and women’s rights.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”.

The Working Group on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other companies, operating within the framework of the United Nations, made a call for civil society organizations to send their comments on the relevant issues regarding impact. of business activity in the human rights of women. For this, we elaborate comments from the point of view of our work agendas, to comment on the situation of health impacts, on the participation of women in companies, and on women and the media.

First, we address how women experience the impact of human rights abuses related to companies differently and disproportionate, exposing the cases of the tobacco industry and breast milk substitutes. Both industries, with their particularities, have aggressive marketing strategies. The tobacco industry especially targets young women in cigarette consumption through strategies such as flavored cigarettes or “light” or sponsorship of fashion events. On the side of the breast-milk substitution industry, they also operate with misleading marketing and labeling strategies on the characteristics of the products, as well as having great interference in public policies – in a situation of conflict of interest – discouraging breastfeeding. maternal and its replacement by the formula from an early age.

On the other hand, financing for development provided by international financial institutions to the private sector also has environmental, social, health, access to infrastructure and housing, and indigenous rights, which affect women in particular. The IFIs in general have difficulties and failures in the implementation of their policies, and particularly in the design and application of gender policies. We emphasize then that policies in general, and particularly those on gender, should be strengthened so that they establish clear guidelines for clients (especially companies and other private entities) to apply differentiated impact assessments, and also strengthen accountability mechanisms to give effective remedies when there are negative impacts.

Finally, we also exposed all the difficulties and barriers that women face to participate in jobs in the private sector, with information obtained through our research on equal opportunities for women and LGTTBIQ + people in companies, unions and universities. We also send recommendations on how media and advertising industries could fight against gender stereotypes and the disempowerment of women.
More information:
Carolina Tamagnini – carotamagnini@fundeps.org





During the week of October 15 to 19, the sessions of the Intergovernmental Working Group of the Human Rights Council of the United Nations took place. This group meets for the fourth time, and the discussions around a draft for the adoption of a binding treaty that seeks to regulate the activity of transnational corporations and their effects on human rights.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”

A draft text for the ‘Binding Treaty on Business and Human Rights’ was finally submitted in mid July. This document was launched in Geneva, within the framework of the mandate of the Intergovernmental Working Group on Business and Human Rights, which indicated that a binding treaty on this matter should be developed. The sessions in October, took as a starting point for the debate, that ‘Zero Draft’.

The immediate antecedent of this draft was the document known as “Elements of the Treaty” that circulated at the end of 2017 and was discussed at the third session of the Intergovernmental Group in October of that same year. Subsequently, these ‘Elements’ were submitted for public consultation and comments were received until February 2018. Once the process was closed, the construction of a text for the 4th session was left.

About the ‘Zero Draft’

At first glance, the essential difference between both documents (the treaty and the elements), is the disappearance of the term ‘other companies’ when it refers to the subjects susceptible of judicial responsibility. The debate over the inclusion of other companies besides those of a transnational nature was strongly opposed. This, since it was considered that this treaty should only focus on those companies that have activities in two or more national jurisdictions because those that only acted in one State, were subject to national regulatory regimes. However, it should be noted that Article 4 of the draft defines ‘transnational business activities’ as any productive or commercial activity that takes place in two or more national jurisdictions. This reference could also be interpreted for those business activities carried out in a single State but that could be transnationalized due to their inclusion in a value chain.

Likewise, the preamble of the document does not include in its entirety what had been proposed in the draft elements of the treaty. The document published at the end of last year mentioned, among other things, the importance of referencing the Guiding Principles, the rules on the responsibility of transnational corporations and the pressing situation regarding the negative impacts of business activity on human rights. The draft treaty, in its preamble, fails to recognize all the elements that frame the process of creating this binding instrument.

In a second instance, it is important to mention that the draft text highlights the responsibility of the State as the first and only protector of Fundamental Rights in the face of corporate actions, although it ignores the possible damage caused to the commercial activity of nations. In this sense, those commercial activities that are supported by the States (generally public private investments) do not have a reception in this treaty.

The draft also surprises because of the relevance given to the remediation of damages and the rights of the victims, given the urgent need to prevent companies from violating human rights. This disparity between the remedy and prevention was noted by civil society in the ‘Elements’ document, and criticized as it is necessary that the damages caused by business activity be prevented in the same way as the provision of compensation to the victims.

Despite the strong focus on the ‘effective remedy’, the draft adopts an article on prevention; in which it is important to mention the obligation to establish legislation that obliges companies to take due diligence actions. Including environmental and human rights assessments to analyze their activities and take the necessary actions to prevent damage.

Now, it is clear that the draft proposes a binding component for the States, in the sense that it forces them to adopt legislation that ensures respect for Human Rights against business activity. However, the text does not evidence the responsibility of the companies and this is because the treaty will not make them obligated subjects but through the laws that the States will implement. In this regard, the possibility of creating a ‘tribunal’ or another similar institution that has the capacity to judge and penalize the actions of transnational companies disappears.

The draft of the treaty did not include the chapter on ‘Obligations of companies’ that was found in the ‘Elements’; nor were the obligations of international organizations included.

An important element that appears in the draft is the ‘International Fund for Victims’, whose objective is to collaborate with the effective remediation to the damages caused by the business activity.

About the 4th session

After the 4th session of the Intergovernmental Working Group, the polarization of opinions between the countries of the ‘north’ and the global ‘south’ has become evident. The countries belonging to the BRICS block, together with most of the African continents and Latin American; have shown a positive response to the initiative of a legally binding instrument. However, representatives of the European Union, the United States of America, Japan, Australia and Canada, in addition to not having been present at the negotiations, have made clear their refusal to endorse the creation of the aforementioned treaty.

This polarization has relevant effects on the effective force that an instrument of these characteristics can have. Since most of the transnational corporations that would be forced by this text, stay in the States that today pronounce themselves in a manner opposite to the treaty, the protection of human rights against the activity of transnational corporations would not be completely insured .

There are still no certainties about how the process will continue after this fourth session and it is also not clear how civil society will be included in it. According to the ‘Global Campaign to Stop Corporate Impunity’, the following are the points recommended to the Intergovernmental Group, to give continuity to the negotiations:

  1. The future treaty should be aimed at Transnational Corporations (TNCs) and other companies with transnational activities, in accordance with the mandate given to the Intergovernmental Working Group in resolution 26/9.
  2. The future treaty must contain direct obligations for NCDs. It must also establish the joint and several liability of the parent companies with the entities throughout its global production chain (subsidiaries, subcontractors, suppliers, etc.).
  3. The future treaty should provide for an international enforcement mechanism with effective and binding enforcement powers. In this regard, the Global Campaign proposes the creation of an International Court to prosecute TNCs that commit human rights violations and an International Monitoring Center for TNCs.
  4. The future treaty must clearly establish the primacy of human rights obligations over trade or investment agreements.
  5. The future treaty should include concrete measures against the influence of TNCs in the process of formulating public policies at the international and national levels.
  6. The effective participation of civil society in all stages of negotiations on the draft treaty and the safeguarding of the process of influence of TNCs and their representatives.


Agustina Palencia


More Information:

We present comments on the draft treaty on business and human rights.

Advancing towards a binding treaty on transnational corporations and human rights.

Zero Draft Binding Treaty

On August 10, IDB Invest carried out in Buenos Aires a public face-to-face consultation on the draft for its new Access to Public Information policy. This event is part of the virtual consultation currently open that BID Invest began in May of this year. The day was carried out in order to receive comments from civil society organizations.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”.

In May of this year, IDB Invest, the private investment arm of the IDB Group, opened an instance of public consultation to evaluate the draft document of what will be its new Access to Information Policy. In this framework, the institution decided to hold some face-to-face meetings to receive comments and to hear the opinion of civil society organizations.

On August 10, BID Invest called a face-to-face consultation in Argentina, in the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires; and FUNDEPS participated. The day lasted a couple of hours and the central axes of discussion rested on: the information to be published before the approval of a project, the information to be published during the execution of a project and the list of exceptions to the policy. From the institution, the comments made were received and it was made explicit that after the consultation process was finished, a new document would be created taking into account both the virtual consultation and the face-to-face instance. Likewise, it was pointed out that if any of the comments are not incorporated, the reason for said decision will be justified.

Regarding the call to this meeting, there are some doubts about the selection process of the organizations that were invited. 12 organizations participated and FUNDEPS was the only one from the interior of the country. In this line, the low call makes us think that the information was not circulated with the necessary precedence and it was not foreseen that several organizations and communities could not attend being that they are very far from Buenos Aires.

From FUNDEPS we recognize in a positive way the implementation of face-to-face instances for the consultation. This allows us to clarify doubts and comments about the draft in real time, while at the same time it allowed us to know the intention of the institution when it comes to re-thinking its policy. In this regard, BID Invest explained that considering the relevance of the private investment portfolio of the IDB Group, it was necessary to modernize the Access to Information policy.

In general terms the draft in question has advanced positively on the previous policy. It has improved in key instances but there are still elements to polish. Special emphasis was placed on them by civil society and comments are expected to be incorporated. In addition to the suggestions and comments we made in the framework of the face-to-face consultation, from FUNDEPS, and together with other organizations in the country and the region, we will be sending a document with written comments to contribute to the process of reviewing the Policy.

More information:

Actual Política de Disponibilidad de Información (vigente desde el 2005)


Gonzalo Roza – gon.roza@fundeps.org

Agustina Palencia – agustinapalencia@fundeps.org

Together with the rest of the organizations that make up GREFI, we publish a comparative analysis of the regulatory frameworks of the main institutions that finance development in Latin America, with a focus on the similarities and differences between traditional, emerging and chinese banking institutions.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”.

The Regional Group on Financing and Infrastructure (GREFI), made up of FUNDEPS, DAR, Ambiente y Sociedad and Fundar, recently published its latest research paper on the regulations of international financial institutions (IFIs): Comparative Analysis of IFIs regulations Present in Latin America This is a comparative analysis that takes as an object of study the operational policies of different institutions: the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the World Bank (WB), the Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC), the Corporation Financiera Internacional (CFI), the Development Bank of Brazil (BNDES), the Development Bank of Latin America (CAF), the Development Bank of China (BDC) and the Chinese Bank of Exports and Imports (ExIm Bank). The essential objective was to be able to achieve a comparison between those traditional institutions, new development institutions and Chinese institutions. The anchoring of this study is given by the number of new actors that today are part of the financial and investment scenario in Latin America.

The analysis was carried out on four axes: access to information, citizen participation, indigenous peoples and social and environmental safeguards. The indicators for these categories were obtained from the best international practices in each of these subjects (the OAS model law on access to information, ILO Convention 169, among others). Each category was divided into different elements that received a score. The product of this work is presented in a statistical way, expressing at what level (percentage) the policies of the institutions achieve the highest standards.

The main results obtained in the study report that two banks categorized as traditional IBRD-BM (86%) and CFI (64%), in addition to an emerging CAF bank (62%), obtain the highest ratings. Among institutions rated less than 50% are two traditional IDB banks (45%) and CII (26%), one emerging bank BNDES (17%) and two Chinese banks BEIC (8%) and BDC (0%). An interesting finding is that only in the categories of traditional banking and emerging banking institutions with relatively high rating are observed. In contrast, Chinese banks stand out with the lowest evaluations according to the proportion of estimated adequacy. This is partly explained by the BDC bank, which does not obtain a qualification in any thematic axis, since, due to lack of access to its regulations, these are not known. (See the specific chapter on CDB).

More information:

Full publication Comparative analysis of the regulations of IFIs present in Latin America


Agustina Palencia: agustinapalencia@fundeps.org

Report prepared by the Healthy Latin American Coalition (CLAS) was presented in the framework of a public consultation opened by the Special Rapporteurship on Economic, Social, Cultural and Environmental Rights (REDESCA) of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (CIDH), with the to prepare a thematic report on inter-American standards in the area of ​​business and human rights.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”.

The growing number of cases of human rights abuses and violations committed by companies has led to the treatment of the problem by the international community for some years now. In this context and within the framework of the inter-American system, the IACHR considered gathering information from different interested parties for the purpose of preparing a report that considers the regional reality, and that analyzes and systematizes the inter-American obligations and standards, in order to finally make recommendations on the matter.

Report presented by CLAS, a network that groups around 300 organizations in Latin America of which FUNDEPS is a part, focuses specifically on analyzing the link between companies and chronic noncommunicable diseases (NCDs).

Thus, first, the report provides information on the impact of these diseases in the region, with special mention to the involvement of vulnerable groups. Secondly, the power of influence of companies in the process of formulation of norms and public policies is analyzed, as an obstacle when adopting, executing and advancing in health policies to prevent and reduce the impact of chronic noncommunicable diseases. . In this regard, the cases of the tobacco industry, the food industry and the alcoholic beverage industry are cited as examples.

The document also warns that the current regulations and action plans sanctioned by governments focus on the prevention of the risk factors of these diseases, without including a more general perspective on human rights and companies. It observes that only some countries have made slight progress in this regard, despite the fact that international evidence shows that the most effective measures to reduce the consumption of unhealthy products are those that control the actions of the companies that manufacture and promote these products; especially in relation to marketing and promotion strategies.

Beyond the efforts of Latin American governments to move forward with legislation for the prevention of NCDs, the intervention of companies in the design and implementation of public policies, as well as the lobby of the industry, constitute a great obstacle to effective implementation of norms that prevent the population from the health consequences of consuming unhealthy products.

Currently, at the international level, there are non-binding instruments and mechanisms that aim to protect human rights from the irresponsible actions of companies. These include: the United Nations (UN) Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, the OECD guidelines and the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights. Similarly, the work of the IACHR has focused on the search for the prevalence of fundamental rights against the power of corporations; and that is why this thematic report takes on a fundamental character. In this context, also, in the last three years, at the initiative of some States, it has begun to debate the possibility of having an international treaty that effectively forces companies to comply with and guarantee respect for human rights. We believe that an instrument with these characteristics would reinforce the existing regulations, while at the same time ending the abuses perpetrated.

More information

Report presented by CLAS


Agustina Mozzoni, <agustinamozzoni@fundeps.org>

The works of the Environmental Center of Villa Carlos Paz show an advance of 90% and estimate that in 30 days it will be in operation. Meanwhile, the concern of the residents of Malagueño continues asking for concrete measures to make effective the differentiated collection of waste as well as awareness campaigns.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”.

The project “Environmental Center of Villa Carlos Paz” is being developed in a municipal area located near the National Route 20, which links it with the city of Córdoba, where the current open-air dump is currently operating. It will process the garbage of more than 100.00 inhabitants of the region that includes Villa Carlos Paz and neighboring localities (Villa Rio Icho Cruz, Mayu Sumaj, Cuesta Blanca, Tala Huasi, Cabalango and Malagueño).

In Centro Ambiental, it is integrated by three works: a sanitary landfill for the disposal of solid urban waste, a separation and treatment plant for leachates (toxic residual waste liquid) and the closure of the existing open-air dump for more than 50 years. years.

The works with a total investment of 188,403,896 pesos are being financed through the Environmental Management Program of Tourist Municipalities, executed by the Ministry of Tourism of the Nation with funds from the IDB (Inter-American Development Bank) and the National State.

The construction of the Environmental Center began in mid-2017 and according to Horacio Pedrone, Secretary of Environmental Urban Development of the Municipality of Carlos Paz: “We think that by the second half of this year, we will have the new Environmental Treatment Center in operation of urban solid waste “.

While the works are advancing rapidly and the authorities of Carlos Paz announce that at the end of August the differentiated waste collection will begin in the city, in charge of the company Cotreco, in Malagueño there is uncertainty and concern.

In this regard, it is stated that although the Municipality of Carlos Paz has announced communication and awareness campaigns to the community on how to proceed when separating and collecting garbage, no concrete measures have yet been observed. The Malagueño authorities for their part say nothing about it, and taking into account that the Environmental Center will be inaugurated soon, the residents of Villa San Nicolás (Malagueño) fear that the place will become a new landfill.

The project foresees that once the construction of the Environmental Center is completed, the definitive closure of the existing open-air dump would begin, solving a problem that takes 58 years. Until recently, even the fire sources in the same one continued, affecting the smoke and the toxic gases emanating from the landfill to the San Nicolás neighborhood and other neighborhoods near the highway.

In addition, during the last months of December and January, the landfill was burning for more than 80 days, and therefore self-appointed neighbors organized protests calling for an environmental emergency to be declared as a result of the toxicity generated by the smoke from the burning garbage.

In short, the environmental damage affects the air that neighbors breathe, and due to the rains – which increase during the summer and tourist seasons – the ashes end in the San Roque dam that supplies water to 70% of the city ​​of Córdoba.

From FUNDEPS we follow this process and accompany the community of Villa San Nicolás to ensure respect for their rights to a healthy environment, health and access to information and citizen participation. Likewise, and as we have been saying for some time, we consider questionable the location of the Environmental Center next to the La Calera Defense Nature Reserve, and meters from San Roque Lake in areas that may have a higher filtration or percolation propensity towards the Napa of water.

More information





María Pérez Alsina – mariaperezalsina@fundeps.org

Gonzalo Rozagon.roza@fundeps.org

We were participating in the C20 meeting, a civil society affinity group for the G20 process. In it, we coordinated the discussions of the investment and infrastructure work group, and participated in meetings with authorities.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”.

On the occasion of the Argentine presidency of the G20 -which brings together the governments of the 20 largest economies in the world-, the meeting of the civil society group, called C20, took place on April 4 and 5 in Buenos Aires. It is organized into 8 working groups that address the following agendas: anti-corruption; architecture of the international financial system; education, employment and inclusion; environment, climate and energy; gender; global local; global health; and investment and infrastructure.

Within the working group of investment and infrastructure, the discussion was oriented to elaborate recommendations for the G20 governments, especially for the Argentine government for being leading the forum during 2018. Thus, issues concerning responsible investments were debated, with a focus in the impact of business activity on human rights, and different aspects related to infrastructure projects -financial, environmental, accountability, participation, among others-. These discussions began in March, through the online forum of the working group, and will continue in the same way for the elaboration of the conclusions as a group.

Likewise, during the second day, we participated in a meeting with Matías Mondino, Infrastructure Director of the Ministry of Finance and representative before the G20 infrastructure group. During the meeting, in addition to knowing about the government’s agenda for its G20 presidency on investments, the concerns of the organizations present in this regard were expressed about investments in infrastructure and public-private partnerships.

The result of the discussions held during the two days, will be reflected in a working document to be presented at the C20 summit to be held on August 6 and 7 in Buenos Aires. It is expected that the recommendations made by civil society will be taken by governments and reflected within the commitments of the G20. The purpose of the C20 process is to promote economic and financial policies that are attentive to the duties of the states in the area of ​​human rights, including in their agenda transparency and accountability.

More information


Gonzalo Roza – gon.roza@fundeps.org

Carolina Tamagnini – carotamagnini@fundeps.org

The Coalition for Human Rights in Development is making a call to fill the post of Program and Communication Officer, under the supervision of FUNDEPS. This position is full-time and will be responsible for providing support to the coordination and advocacy activities of the Coalition, while at the same time coordinating the institutional communication of the Coalition.

For this position, we are looking for a person in Communication, International Relations, Political Science, Advocacy or related careers who have experience in the field of human rights and in institutional communication. The person must have excellent oral and written command of English since communications with the Coalition are conducted in that language.

The post will have a contract with FUNDEPS and the Coalition for a year, starting in April this year, and with the possibility of renewing later, with fees set by the Coalition.

Those who apply should send the following documentation IN ENGLISH:

• Presentation letter
• Curriculum vitae
• Short sample of a written piece.

The documentation should be sent to info@fundeps.org with the subject “Program and Communications Associate” until Monday, March 5 inclusive. Applications in Spanish will be rejected.

To read the full call, click here.

Gonzalo Roza, gon.roza@fundeps.org

During 2018, the private sector investment arm of the Inter-American Development Bank, BID
Invest, will review its institutional policy on access to information. It is a process that is expected
to improve its current policy, in order to effectively guarantee this right.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”

The investment arm of the private sector of the Inter-American Development Bank, BID Invest, will review its access to information policy during 2018. IDB Invest, is the entity in which the former Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) was transformed, as a result of the deepening that the IDB intends to carry out in its financing to the private sector.

The IIC (now BID Invest), like the other international financial institutions (IFIs), has operational policies that regulate the actions of the entity and present criteria for the granting of loans. The policies of access to information fall within the group of rules that define the actions of the institution. In particular, they claim the basic right of access to information that human beings have.

It is also important to mention the relevance that this right adopts in terms of development projects. For a true development to take place, it is necessary that those involved can be part of the information exchange process, and even more, that they can see their development priorities reflected throughout the project’s investment cycle. Only then, policies and projects will be able to provide real benefits to local communities.

In this regard, IFIs and their policies do not always account for the best standards and practices in terms of access to information. In a recent analysis, the organization International Accountability Project, found that the former Corporation failed greatly in guaranteeing this right. Numerous projects financed by this member of the IDB Group have not managed to make the affected communities have access to information or participation mechanisms. This situation has been fostered by a lax normative framework that does not guarantee access to this right in its fullness.

It is expected that in this 2018, with the change to BID Invest, the review of the policy will achieve maximum standards and good practices in what access to information is concerned. However, there are still few details about this process. The dates are not defined and it is not known if there will be any instance that allows participation and / or comments from civil society organizations. From FUNDEPS we will be following this process closely and getting involved in it.

More information


Agustina Palencia


Gonzalo Roza – gon.roza@fundeps.org

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”

The year 2017 began with important and promising news for the Gasification Project of Localities of the Interior of the Province of Córdoba, better known by the people of Córdoba as the “main gas pipeline project”. During the first days of January, the Governor of Córdoba Juan Schiaretti and President Mauricio Macri were present at the inauguration of a Pressure Reducing Plant in La Calera, work carried out by the Brazilian company Odebrecht within the framework of the systems awarded to it after the public tender launched in 2015. The reduction plant constituted the first section inaugurated by the Córdoba-Gran Córdoba Ring System, comprised of 52 kilometers of gas pipelines. reinforcement, and that will benefit 300 thousand inhabitants of both Córdoba and La Calera and of Saldán, Villa Allende, Mendiolaza, Malagueño and Malvinas Argentinas, according to official information.

The presence of Macri at the inauguration of the work represented a gesture of political support for the Schiaretti government. Especially taking into account the strong questions and criticisms received by the provincial government for the involvement in this project of the Brazilian construction company Odebrecht, involved in a corruption scandal in Brazil and other Latin American countries, even in Argentina. Despite these questions, the Schiaretti government always defended the participation of the company by resorting to the debatable argument that the corruption events in which it is involved occurred between 2004 and 2013, while the tender in Córdoba was carried out only in 2015.

However, after a few days the project suffers a major setback: Schiaretti announces that, due to delays in obtaining loans from Chinese banks, 4 stretches of gas pipelines would be re-tendered to avoid postponing the start of the works in said sections, but in this case with the Province’s own financing. Recall that of the 10 trunk systems that were defined in 2015, 4 were awarded to Transitory Business Unions (UTEs) made up of Argentine and Chinese companies and financed by Chinese banks (ICBC and Bank of China); and the remaining 6 were awarded to Odebrecht (at first it was said that the Brazilian company would present its own financing for the start of the work, but finally this was not the case, making the province have to resort to indebtedness to start the works).

Thus, criticisms of the link with Odebrecht in the work will be added to questions about the delays in Chinese financing; the lack of relevant explanations regarding the reasons for the fall in financing; the need to re-tender the work and the decision of the provincial government to go back to the market to borrow to finance the work and even for the substantial increase in the cost of the work, which went from a budget of 8,600 million pesos in 2015 to 12,480 million pesos at the beginning of 2017 (an increase of 45% in almost two years).

After a new call for bids in February, in March the works of the four aforementioned systems were re-awarded to the same UTEs that had won in the first tender. In turn, the government issued a new batch of public securities for 460 million dollars to finance the start of works in the 4 tranches of the project, with the financial agent of Banco de Córdoba (Bancor).

Although in that same month of March advances were announced in the negotiations with the Chinese banks to finish making the committed credits for the work, surprisingly on April 21 the Governor Schiaretti announced the definitive fall of the Chinese financing and the signing of a decree that rendered ineffective the adjudication of the works of the 4 corresponding trunk systems. While Schiaretti himself blamed the Chinese banks for the fall in funding, arguing that they raised conditions “leonine, unacceptable to Cordoba and the national government,” the fact is that the government never made clear the true reasons and reasons that led to the fall of Chinese financing.

In this way, the government of Córdoba decided to launch a new tender for 437 million dollars for the construction of the 4 gas pipeline systems, which now in the new call would become 8 systems (in addition to the 6 remaining systems already awarded to Odebrecht ) and whose financing would come from the same province. In this case, the allocation of the new systems fell to national companies.

In early May, and despite criticism from the opposition, the provincial legislature approves a bill that enables new changes in the pipeline project: the negotiations with Chinese banks to finance 4 of the trunk systems are terminated, and it is approved that it is now the provincial government itself that must obtain the totality of the funds to complete the work (ratifying in this way the authorization granted by law 10,339 that enabled operations to take public credit to carry out the works). Just a few days later, the government made official through a decree published in the Official Gazette, a new debt collection for 450 million dollars to finance the work. By the end of June, Schiaretti himself would announce through his Twitter account that the province had obtained the total financing for the work through the placement of bonds in the international capital market.

In short, this strategic project for Córdoba that was going to have in the beginning with financing provided or managed by international actors (initially through the National Bank of Economic and Social Development of Brazil -BNDES-, then through Chinese banks and own financing provided by the Odebrecht company) to depend exclusively, for its concretion, on the province’s own resources or obtained through debt through the issuance of government securities.

The second half of the year would be marked mainly by the progress of the work (according to the government by the end of the year 14% of the work had been completed and the work was planned to be completed by mid-2019), but also by the constants and recurring questions from sectors of the opposition and civil society in relation to the project. Especially after Córdoba was mentioned in the framework of the Lava Jato case as one of the destinations where the Odebrecht constructure paid bribes in Argentina.

Although the national government of Mauricio Macri began a campaign to review and investigate the possible involvement of Odebrecht in the payment of bribes in numerous public works projects in Argentina (which even led the national government to suspend the company to carry out works at a national level), the gas pipeline project in Córdoba was strangely excluded from said revision and the relevant explanations were never provided to justify such exclusion. Even the company continues to operate in the province despite its suspension at the national level (its main work is precisely that of gas pipelines in Córdoba) and the requirements from the opposition that the same be done at the provincial level. Given the lack of answers at the national level, some opposition legislators traveled to Brazil in October of this year to ask the prosecutors of the Lava Jato case to investigate the link between the Brazilian company in the payment of bribes in the framework of the bidding process in 2008 for the construction of trunk pipelines.

In this way, between marches and counter-marches, the balance of 2017 in relation to the trunk gas pipeline project throws little light and many shadows and suspicions in relation to the transparency and execution of the project. Not only because of the never entirely clear fall of Chinese financing at the beginning of the year but also, and above all, because of the way the provincial government has handled the involvement of the construction company Odebrecht in the work and the numerous causes of corruption that splash throughout Latin America and even in Argentina itself. Although the government of Schiaretti has detached the company from any kind of connection with the possible delivery of bribes and corruption in the bidding of the work (even with the support of the national government of Macri itself that has initiated a kind of “Crusade” against the Brazilian company for its actions in the country during the Kirchner government), the truth is that the year that ends leaves many questions and aspects not clarified about the project.

Undoubtedly, 2017 has left a huge debt outstanding in terms of transparency and accountability in relation to this strategic and emblematic project for Córdoba. From FUNDEPS, we expect this debt to be paid in 2018.

More information

– Working Document: Transparency in the gasification project of localities in the interior of the province of Córdoba by Melanie Mackenzie – December 2017. FUNDEPS.

– Notes and publications of FUNDEPS in relation to trunk gas pipelines.

–  Main gas pipelines in Córdoba: a work that advances in the shadow of corruption by Agustina Palencia – December 2017. El Entramado. FUNDEPS.

Image source

La Voz del Interior


Macarena Lourdes Mustafa / Voluntaria del Área de Gobernabilidad Global

Gonzalo Roza / Coordinador del Área de Gobernabilidad Global


Gonzalo Roza / Coordinador del Área de Gobernabilidad Global