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Waters Statement at Subcommittee Hearing on Multilateral Development Institutions

Today at a Subcommittee on National Security, International Development, and Monetary Policy hearing entitled, “How America Leads Abroad: An Examination of Multilateral Development Institutions,” Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), Chairwoman of the House Committee on Financial Services, gave the following statement:

As Prepared for Delivery

In 1993 and 1994, I sat on the international subcommittee of what was then the Banking Committee at a time when a number of people wanted to abolish the World Bank and the IMF because they believed the institutions were indifferent to human needs and values, such as worker rights, income distribution effects, and the protection of the environment.

We made a good deal of progress in forcing change, including, especially, the creation of the Inspection Panel. And, in doing so, we rescued the World Bank as well as the IMF from a reactionary and unenlightened viewpoint that made them legitimate targets. It took a while, but we were able to help make them more relevant, and more important, not just on the particular issues we care about, but on their capacity to do better work. So, I am very proud to have been a part of that, and I look forward to continuing to engage on these issues as we consider the authorization requests before us today.

Let me just say that there’s a long history of people saying that certain things are immovable, that some things can’t change – but that do, in fact, move, and do change.


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