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G20’s principles on institutional investment: A Trojan horse for finance-driven infrastructure? (November 2015)

Rethinking Bretton Woods | Thu, Nov 5, 2015

By Aldo Caliari

In a new article published by the Heinrich Boell Foundation, RBW Project Director Aldo discusses the G20-endorsed principles on institutional investors.

For the last five years, the Group of 20 has been discussing policies to finance the “infrastructure gap” – the more than USD 1 trillion of additional investment needed to bridge the infrastructure gap of developing countries. Its main proposal has been to attract the savings of institutional investors (mutual funds, pension funds, insurers, private equity funds).

In 2013 the OECD produced a discreet set of eight “High Level Principles of Long Term Investment Financing for Institutional Investors” drafted by the OECD and endorsed by the Group of 20. In subsequent reports, the OECD has now completed guidance that expands on the meaning of each principle.

Several of the principles are unassuming and commonsensical to the point of innocuousness. But hidden among the maze of more than 400 paragraphs of guidance, there are a number of points that, when viewed collectively, paint quite a disturbing picture, one that would substantially alter the way common citizens may think about infrastructure and their rights as citizens.

Read full article.