More questions asked about EBRD and EIB transparency
Bankwatch Mail | 8 October 2012
The European Investment Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development have been awarded some of the worst transparency scores for international finance institutions in this year’s Aid Transparency Index, published in early October by the campaign group Publish What You Fund.
This article is from Issue 53 of our quarterly newsletter Bankwatch Mail
With a score of 44 percent the EIB comes 36th out of 72 organisations assessed. The EBRD came in 21st with a score of 54.8 percent.
Bankwatch’s EBRD coordinator Ionut Apostol commented: “The news that the EBRD has failed to make significant progress on transparency is particularly concerning as this year the EBRD expanded its area of operations to include North Africa, a region where transparency in building post revolutionary societies is key.”
Bankwatch’s EIB coordinator Anna Roggenbuck reacted to the EIB just barely scraping into Publish What You Fund’s ‘moderate’ transparency category, saying: “This is unacceptable for an official EU body. Europeans and those impacted by the EIB’s investments have the right to know exactly where and how the EU bank spends its money. The EIB must comply fully with EU legislation on access to information. And it must begin proactively disseminating comprehensive information about its operations to the public in a way that goes beyond the limited facts and figures currently available on its website.”
A particular problem undermining the transparency of both public banks is their continuing reference to commercial confidentiality as a justification for concealing important information from the public. The European Parliament has repeatedly called on the EIB to make more information available, especially in light of the EU growth package that includes a EUR 60 billion increase in EIB lending.
David Hall-Matthews, Director of Publish What You Fund, said: “There is too little readily available information about aid, which undermines the efforts of those who both give and receive it. Transparency is essential if aid is to truly deliver on its promise.”
Read more: The 2012 Aid Transparency Index is available at: http://www.publishwhatyoufund.org