Banks in the protection of human rights

Report on the BNDES launched in South Africa Report on the BNDES launched in South Africa

In a roundtable discussion about the role of development banks in the protection of human rights, Conectas launched the English edition of its report about the Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES), released by the organization in Brazil in August this year. The event, which took place last November 24th, was co-hosted by Conectas and the CALS (Centre for Applied Legal Studies), an applied research center within the Faculty of Law of the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa.

To an audience composed mainly by human rights practitioners, academics and students, Conectas’ Programmes Director, Juana Kweitel, presented the motivations behind the research on the BNDES and the main findings of the study. According to Conectas’ study, the human rights abuses in the context of projects and businesses supported by the BNDES can be attributed to the slow progress of the Brazilian financial institution in ensuring its operations are conducted transparently; to the fragile safeguards for the prevention, mitigation and reparation of human rights violations and to the low levels of accountability and civil society participation in the definition of the bank’s activities, programs and investment decisions. A summary of the publication, with the introduction and the recommendations, can be found here.

The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA), shared with the public the tools implemented to mitigate the adverse impacts of development projects and programs on individuals and communities. The DBSA’s presentation can be found here.

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