First meeting of CADTM International Council in Rabat, Morocco

29 April 2014 by Pauline Imbach , Maria Elena Saludas

Compliant to the decision taken at the The last Global Assembly of CADTM held at Bouznika (Morocco) in 2013, the International Council’s first meeting took place from the 15th -17th April, 2014. This meeting aimed to strengthen the coordination among the member organizations of the CADTM international network.

The following participants attended the meeting:

For CADTM Africa: Solange Koné and Sékou Diarra ; for CADTM AYNA : María Elena Saludas and William Gaviria ; for CADTM Europe : Christine Van den Daelen and Nicolas Sersiron, and also representatives of the International Secretariat, the responsibilities of which are shared (provisionally) by CADTM Belgium and ATTAC Morocco . Ten members of the International Secretariat (five delegates from Belgium and five from Morocco) were also present.

The Council held a meeting over three days in the premises of the Théâtre Aquarium in the heart of a picturesque popular locality in the city of Rabat (Morocco), full of markets displaying counters with typical foodstuff, fruits and colourful vegetables and dry fruits, while the vendors pleasantly greet the passersby, usually in Arabic, and offered their products .

The proposed agenda and topics discussed during these three days of intense debate were:

CADTM’s assessment and orientation regarding the World Social Forum ; strengthening CADTM’s collaboration with ATTAC and preparation of the ATTAC summer school in Europe in August 2014 ; Eric Toussaint’s analysis of the international situation along with timely interventions from the representatives of other continents.

And finally, CADTM’s role and tasks on:

public debt and comprehensive audits; illegitimate private debts related to the issue of micro-credit ( strongly affecting Morocco which has many victims); denunciations and actions related to the 70th anniversary of the World Bank World Bank
The World Bank was founded as part of the new international monetary system set up at Bretton Woods in 1944. Its capital is provided by member states’ contributions and loans on the international money markets. It financed public and private projects in Third World and East European countries.

It consists of several closely associated institutions, among which :

1. The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD, 189 members in 2017), which provides loans in productive sectors such as farming or energy ;

2. The International Development Association (IDA, 159 members in 1997), which provides less advanced countries with long-term loans (35-40 years) at very low interest (1%) ;

3. The International Finance Corporation (IFC), which provides both loan and equity finance for business ventures in developing countries.

As Third World Debt gets worse, the World Bank (along with the IMF) tends to adopt a macro-economic perspective. For instance, it enforces adjustment policies that are intended to balance heavily indebted countries’ payments. The World Bank advises those countries that have to undergo the IMF’s therapy on such matters as how to reduce budget deficits, round up savings, enduce foreign investors to settle within their borders, or free prices and exchange rates.

International Monetary Fund
Along with the World Bank, the IMF was founded on the day the Bretton Woods Agreements were signed. Its first mission was to support the new system of standard exchange rates.

When the Bretton Wood fixed rates system came to an end in 1971, the main function of the IMF became that of being both policeman and fireman for global capital: it acts as policeman when it enforces its Structural Adjustment Policies and as fireman when it steps in to help out governments in risk of defaulting on debt repayments.

As for the World Bank, a weighted voting system operates: depending on the amount paid as contribution by each member state. 85% of the votes is required to modify the IMF Charter (which means that the USA with 17,68% % of the votes has a de facto veto on any change).

The institution is dominated by five countries: the United States (16,74%), Japan (6,23%), Germany (5,81%), France (4,29%) and the UK (4,29%).
The other 183 member countries are divided into groups led by one country. The most important one (6,57% of the votes) is led by Belgium. The least important group of countries (1,55% of the votes) is led by Gabon and brings together African countries.
, International Financial institutions created at Bretton Woods (1944 ) which act in the interests of capital and not that of the people; communication with all who struggle against austerity, unemployment, mortgage Mortgage A loan made against property collateral. There are two sorts of mortgages:
1) the most common form where the property that the loan is used to purchase is used as the collateral;
2) a broader use of property to guarantee any loan: it is sufficient that the borrower possesses and engages the property as collateral.
... ; and , as always, the continuation and consolidation of our coordination with organizations and movements leading feminist struggles, peasant struggles , denunciation of the current model of production and consumption causing the climate crisis ; denunciation of free trade agreements (FTAs ) in all forms , since, vis-à-vis the profound global capitalist crisis we are facing an acceleration of agreements and treaties ( old and new) being signed. Its main objective is to grant an absolute legal guarantee to multinational companies and to support governments that promote the ideology of free trade.

Continental analyses were also conducted to evaluate our position vis-à-vis the aforementioned struggles and coordination with organizations and popular movements in each region. As always, the aim was to participate in the development of critical issues which contribute to the transition to the process of a non-capitalist change.

Before continuing with the story of our activities in Morocco , we wish to offer our warm thanks to ATTAC Morocco. Despite the difficulties experienced (refusal to issue receipts, repression of activists, economic difficulties ... ), they managed to hold this meeting, not only with an excellent arrangement but also with great affection and solidarity to all the participants. A big ‘thank you’ to the various members of ATTAC- CADTM Morocco and again congratulations for the work done.

As part of these activities, a public conference on the public debt and international financial institutions (WB/IMF) and their alternatives was convened on Friday, the 18th April at the National Library. A large number of participants attended and enriched the debate which was later covered by various mass-media.

On the 21st April, we begin our work in Morocco’s interiors-at Ouarzazate, 300 kms away from Rabat. At first, a training programme will be provided to women on the issues of debt, audit and micro-credit related to these themes, starting with the testimonies of victims, particularly the region’s women.

This seminar will bring together representatives of CADTM Africa (Togo, Burkina Faso, D R Congo, Mali, Tunisia, Senegal, Cameroon, Benin, Niger, Ivory Coast), CADTM AYNA (Argentina, Haiti ) and CADTM Europe ( Belgium and France ) .

Our presence in Morocco ends with the support to and an active participation in the International Caravan in solidarity with the victims of micro-credit (24th-28th April). It will start from Ouarzazate and is a way of strengthening CADTM Africa’s feminist work, because over 4,500 women organize in this city and its surroundings around this issue.

The caravan will pass through four cities. This activity is of considerable importance, given that two leaders of the Association for Defending Victims of Micro-credit were recently sentenced to an imprisonment for one year, following an unfair trial which ended on the 11thFebruary, 2014.

We will continue to share Share A unit of ownership interest in a corporation or financial asset, representing one part of the total capital stock. Its owner (a shareholder) is entitled to receive an equal distribution of any profits distributed (a dividend) and to attend shareholder meetings. information about our presence in Morocco, an experience that presents us with new perspectives and new interpretations, since we are carrying out the same struggle albeit in a separate cultural framework. We learn and give expression to revolts, aware that the struggle and the search for alternatives are now local, regional, continental and international.

Written in Ouarzazate, Morocco, on the20th April, 2014

Translation by Sushovan Dhar

Other articles in English by Pauline Imbach (7)

Maria Elena Saludas


Other articles in English by Maria Elena Saludas (4)



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