Organizations from the Middle East and North Africa and the Middle East/the Arab World held a meeting on Friday, April 7, 2023, to discuss the World Bank and IMF Annual Meetings to be held in Marrakech on 9 – 15 October 2023, and ways to organize a counter-summit to expose the policies of these two institutions and highlight the damage they have caused to the people of our region. Discussions also took place in expanding the initiative to include all trade unions and human rights associations and organizations that agree with this initiative.
The organizations present at this meeting consider the World Bank and the IMF colonial financial institutions established by the imperialist powers to impose their hegemony over the peoples. These powers claim to fight poverty in our countries through these two financial institutions through loans necessary for development. However, in reality, they impose liberal policies through privatization, liberalization of markets, and retreat from providing public services such as health and education…etc. without achieving the development it claims to seek. They are tools to impose their economic hegemony on the world, especially on countries of the Global South that have been plunged into debt, leading to the imposition of free trade agreement. This has led to deepening their economic dependence and the elimination of local industries.
For decades, these countries have borne the burdens of repaying colonial debts and the odious debts of authoritarian regimes supported by the World Bank and the IMF, as these two institutions prevented these countries from industrializing and developing themselves, and encouraged export policies undertaken by the local ruling classes and large foreign companies according to market requirements. Globally, they financed, through huge loans, large projects that are very costly and useless, which led to successive economic crises and the accumulation of incapacitating debts that were exploited by the two financial institutions to impose structural reform programs such as reducing public financing on health, education and transportation, and privatizing public sectors, which led to the impoverishment of small producers, peasants, and the working class, in addition to deepening social fragility.
The policies of these two institutions have brought many countries in MENA into a state of bankruptcy with the impoverishment of their people. The policies have led to the elimination of public services in Morocco and attached its economy to imperialist powers. Through the “white paper” their policies seek to privatize the public sector in Iraq. In general, these policies deepen the global division of production by deepening the dependence of our countries and making them completely lose their sovereignty by destroying their economy and imposing the export of their raw materials and opening their markets to the products of the imperialist countries.
During the popular uprisings that swept the region starting in 2011, the two institutions intervened to ensure that the region did not deviate from the neoliberal framework imposed since the 1980s. It imposed the continuation of debt servicing, the implementation of programs to dismantle the public sector, and the plundering of the region’s wealth.
The World Bank and the IMF intend to hold their annual meeting in Marrakech, Morocco, from October 9 to 15, 2023, as a sign of recognition of the Moroccan government’s cooperation with their financial policy and its support for the approach it envisions to impose their dictates on the country’s domestic policy.
To counter the influence of the World Bank and the IMF, the forces against imperialism and savage liberalism announce that they will hold a counter-summit in conjunction with the Annual Meetings. The counter-summit comes to support global calls for the formation of a new, more just world order, after reality began to go beyond the Bretton Woods institutions; and for cancelling colonial and odious debts; for compensation for environmental destruction, colonial policies, and decades of unequal exchange; and for the establishment of a South-South monetary system that can liberate us from the dollarization trap of the global economy.
We seek to make the counter summit a nucleus for the formation of an international network or a permanent forum that brings together advocates from all over the world for ideas, aspirations, and struggles against the two institutions.
Regional coordination to organize a counter summit to the meetings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund in Marrakesh / Morocco in October 2023