Press release

9 days of events in Dakar to boost the CADTM international network’s struggle against illegitimate debt and to contribute to internationalist and feminist answers to the multidimensional crisis of capitalism

5 November 2021 by CADTM International

From 8 to 16 November 2021, the CADTM International network will be meeting in Dakar (Senegal) to boost its struggle against illegitimate debt, whether public or private, in the North as in the South. First a feminist seminar will be devote to microcredit in Africa, a financial device which is presented as a way of fighting poverty but whose consequences turn out to be particularly disastrous for women. Next the General Assemblée of CADTM Africa will bring together all member organizations on the continent. This very dense week will conclude with the World Assembly of the network, a key moment in the CADTM’s life.

After the international caravan in Morocco in 2014, the world social forum in Tunis in 2015, the 7th South Asian workshop in Sri Lanka, the seminar held in Mali, the publication of a book on microcredit in Morocco in 2017, and the 2019 pan-African campaign, the CADTM international network pushes its struggle against microcredits further with a new seminar devoted to this issue, focusing on its specific impact on women in Africa, and more specifically in the context of the CoViD pandemic. On the programme of the event from 8 to 11 November: workshops, debates and mobilizations, organized by the African Coordination of feminist struggles, with women delegates from 15 countries (Belgium, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Gabon, Guinea, Kenya, Mali, Morocco, Niger, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Senegal, South Africa, Togo).

On 12 November 2021, delegate members from some fifteen countries in the African network will convene on the occasion of the continent’s general Assembly. They will focus on how to deal with the debt crisis when 20% of African countries are defaulting or about to default. The issue was also examined by the CADTM network in Kinshasa during the third university of CADTM Africa held from 28 to 30 October 2021.

Five years after the World Assembly held in Tunis, delegates from all member organizations of the CADTM International network will come together from 13 to 16 November for the traditional World Assembly of the network. The agenda is fascinatingly rich, including a political debate on the global situation and national as well as continental reports. The work of the joint international secretariat and events of the network since the Assembly held in Tunis in 2016 will be assessed. The network’s political charter and organizational charter, already amended by the CADTM international Council in September 2019, will be updated again to better respond to what is currently at stake. Lastly we will examine the perspectives of the CADTM International network and the requests for adhesion we have received over the past five years. The various meetings of the World Assembly, which will be held both on line and face-to-face, will be interpreted simultaneously into French, English and Spanish.

The CADTM’s network in a nutshell

Founded in Belgium on 15 March 1990, the Committee for the Cancellation of the Third World Debt (CADTM), renamed Committee for the Abolition of Illegitimate Debt after the 2016 World Assembly, is the international network consisting of members and local committees in Europe, Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean and Asia. It acts in partnership with other organizations and movements that struggle in the same perspective towards the cancellation of public and private illegitimate debts, for a final stop to structural adjustment Structural Adjustment Economic policies imposed by the IMF in exchange of new loans or the rescheduling of old loans.

Structural Adjustments policies were enforced in the early 1980 to qualify countries for new loans or for debt rescheduling by the IMF and the World Bank. The requested kind of adjustment aims at ensuring that the country can again service its external debt. Structural adjustment usually combines the following elements : devaluation of the national currency (in order to bring down the prices of exported goods and attract strong currencies), rise in interest rates (in order to attract international capital), reduction of public expenditure (’streamlining’ of public services staff, reduction of budgets devoted to education and the health sector, etc.), massive privatisations, reduction of public subsidies to some companies or products, freezing of salaries (to avoid inflation as a consequence of deflation). These SAPs have not only substantially contributed to higher and higher levels of indebtedness in the affected countries ; they have simultaneously led to higher prices (because of a high VAT rate and of the free market prices) and to a dramatic fall in the income of local populations (as a consequence of rising unemployment and of the dismantling of public services, among other factors).

policies and ‘free-trade’ agreements. The CADTM, involved as it is in feminist struggles, has achieved several actions and drafted alternatives to make it possible for a world based on sovereignty, solidarity and cooperation among peoples, respect for the environment, equality, social justice and peace to emerge.

The international secretariat of the CADTM network is jointly held by ATTAC-CADTM Morocco and CADTM Belgium.

Contacts :

  • Fatima Zahra El Belghiti: general secretary of ATTAC-CADTM Morocco , fatimazahraelbelghiti1985 [at]
  • Omar Aziki: member of the national secretariat of ATTAC CADTM Morocco and of the CADTM’s joint international secretariat , azikiomar2008 [at]
  • Éric Toussaint (spokesperson of the CADTM International), eric.toussaint4 [at],
  • Beatriz Ortiz (CADTM Belgium) beatriz.ortiz [at],
  • Anaïs Carton (CADTM Belgium): anais.carton [at]
  • General contacts: info [at] et remi [at]
  • Broulaye BAGAYOKO (CADTM Africa): secretariatcadtmafrique [at]

Other articles in English by CADTM International (54)

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