Corruption in the World Bank

A ground-breaking article in Development Today back in December 2000 exposed a major corruption scandal involving Nordic donor trust funds in the World Bank. The Swedish aid agency Sida played a crucial role in pushing the Bank to carry out proper investigations of the missing funds. The Bank meanwhile remained silent about the matter for months and when a press release was finally issued it glossed over the extent of the problem. The article, entitled “World Bank silent about embezzlement. Sida hard line forcing Bank to extend investigation about trust fund corruption” (See DT 22/02), launched our coverage of corruption in the World Bank and the other Bretton Woods institutions.

In subsequent years, Development Today has followed donor debates about cross-debarment, illegal capital flight and the efforts of the maverick French-Norwegian judge Eva Joly to bring accountability to the multilateral system. Here follows a selection of headlines:

• World Bank fails to provide facts about why it pulled out of Bugoye (Read)
• Eva Joly keeps pushing World Bank, multinationals (Read)
• Norwegian firms suspect World Bank of using secret blacklist (Read)
• World Bank blacklisted only one firm last year (Read)
• World Bank refuses to do broad tax haven study (Read)
• Proposes international cross debarment and common blacklists (Read)
• Eva Joly tells Asian Development Bank: ‘get tough or leave Manila’ (Read)
• Corruption hotline: no Nordics follow Danish lead (Read)
• Denmark launches corruption hotline (Read)
• No corruption in Nordic aid agencies? ‘Look harder’, says World Bank (Read)
• Eva Joly to review anti-corruption policies of multilateral banks (Read)
• WB corruption: Japanese trust fund also embezzled, six Bank officials fired (Read)
• AsDB reluctant to publicise names of sanctioned companies (Read)
• Nordics push for cross-debarment system in multilaterals (Read)
• Nordic governments criticise ADB’s anti-corruption approach (Read)
Editorial: Debarred firms shop around (Read)
• ADB: non-legal measures ‘more efficient’ in combating corruption (Read)

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