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IMF Gold Sale Profits Benefit the World’s Poor October 1st, 2012
The International Monetary Fund Executive Board has approved the final 2.7 billion dollars from recent gold sale profits to support the world’s poorest. The total gold sales windfall has now reached nearly 4 billion dollars to benefit the most vulnerable. One of the most powerful institutions in the world decided the right way because ordinary people cared – and acted.
At first, the IMF barely acknowledged the profit and assumed it could remain in their general reserves. Word leaked out about possible major renovations of the IMF office space in Washington, DC.
In response, Jubilee USA, of which the Oblates are a member, delivered tens of thousands of petitions and organized 60 global partners to push the IMF towards debt relief. At the end of February 2012, the IMF Board made a decision on the first distribution of 1.1 billion dollars after Jubilee, the ONE Campaign, ActionAid and Oxfam International met with the IMF staff.
These efforts pushed the IMF to approve the first 1.1 billion dollar distribution AND the second 2.7 billion dollar distribution to support concessional lending in the Poverty Reduction and Growth Trust (PRGT) and extend a 0% interest rate that will make this trust available for future generations beyond 2014. While many of us have concerns about IMF lending, this 0% extension on existing loans will mean real relief for millions of people and translate into direct support for low-income countries.
For more information about Jubilee USA, please visit their website – and get involved! Go to: www.jubileeusa.org
UNCTAD Mandate on Debt Relief Sustained May 3rd, 2012
Jubilee USA is celebrating passage of the Doha Accord, a major step forward in developing solutions to the international debt crisis. The Missionary Oblates is a member of the Jubilee USA coalition and has a seat on the Board. Last week during tough and divisive negotiations in Qatar, Jubilee USA – working with governments and international partners – secured a strong mandate on debt and responsible lending and borrowing.
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On St. Patrick’s Day, Protect the Irish March 19th, 2012
Rev. Seamus P. Finn, OMI and Eric LeCompte, Director of Jubilee USA – wrote a joint piece on the legitimacy, or lack thereof, of international debt burdens. Their full article can be found on the Huffington Post:
“On the Feast of St. Patrick, there may be no better way to honor the patron of Ireland, who according to legend drove out snakes from the country, than by protecting the Irish people from bailing out a nonexistent reckless speculation bank.
Anglo-Irish Bank (Anglo) financed some of Ireland’s worst property speculators for unsustainable golf courses, hotels and super markets and saddled the Irish people with a massive, unjust debt.
At Jubilee USA Network we know a lot about unjust debts. …”
Victory in US Senate for Tax Justice! March 9th, 2012
This week, the Senate took a stand against one of the largest revenue drains facing developing nations today – tax avoidance. Members of the Financial Accountability and Corporate Transparency (FACT) Coalition, have been speaking out against the abuse of off-shore tax havens. And the Senate listened.
Amendment 1818, the Levin Amendment, passed the Senate last night and is a blow against corruption, secrecy, and tax avoidance that aims to end the use and abuse of off-shore tax havens. These tax havens help large corporations and corrupt individuals avoid paying a fair share of taxes to the nations in which they operate. An estimated $160 billion dollars is lost in tax revenue in developing countries due to the use of off-shore tax havens. The Levin amendment gives law enforcement officials tools to stop financial institutions in tax havens from aiding US tax cheats, and help put an end to developing country tax avoidance.
Jubilee USA and the Oblates are founding members of the Financial Accountability and Corporate Transparency (FACT) Coalition. Learn more about tax justice…
Lift the Debt Burden on Poor Countries September 21st, 2009
Without debt relief, the developing world has little hope of economic progress, say the Rev. John Welch* and Ruth Messinger*.
The two members of Jubilee USA argue for debt cancellation in the poorest countries in a compelling article published in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette on the eve of the G-20, the international financial summit being hosted by President Obama.
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The Oblate JPIC Office joined a broad array of faith groups and Non-Governmental Organizations in sending a letter to US Congressional Representatives asking for their support for the Stop Vulture Funds Act. This is newly introduced legislation that would prevent vulture funds (often a type of hedge fund) from making this excessive profit at the expense of poor countries struggling under the burden of debt.
‘Vulture fund’ is a name given to a company that seeks to make profit by buying up debt that is in default on the secondary market for pennies on the dollar, then sues the country in US or European courts once creditor countries forgive the debts owed them by a struggling country. As the value of the remaining debt rises, the Vulture Fund can often recover up to ten times the purchase price.
Some vulture funds target failing companies, but the ‘vulture fund’ campaign is focused on those that target the sovereign debts of impoverished countries.