UN Expert says IMF lending policies "undermine" human rights priorities

| Updated Oct 19, 2017 at 9:05am



Some lending policies of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are "actively undermining" some of the UN's human rights and development priorities, a UN expert said on Wednesday.

Alfred de Zayas, Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, told the UN General Assembly that the IMF was also "promoting the failed policies of privatization and austerity".

He said it was time for so-called "smart" lending policies which encourage Member States to honour their human rights and development commitments.

Mr. de Zayas accused the IMF of imposing conditions which discouraged social spending.

"Often these conditions increase unemployment, lower standards of governing behaviour…and reduce access to free quality education" he said.

He said the World Bank and the IMF needed to "work in tandem" with the UN system on fulfilling human rights obligations.