The role of financing banks

Why is it important for financing institutions, particularly national and multilateral development banks like the BNDES (Brazilian Development Bank), to respect human rights in their policies and projects?

The recent creation of two new banks – the BRICS Bank (by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) and the AIIB (Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank) – has generated much discussion on development financing and human rights. Against this backdrop, Conectas and the São Paulo Law School of the FGV (Getulio Vargas Foundation) are organizing the event “Development, Human Rights and the Role of Public Banks” for February 26, at 2 pm, at the law school’s auditorium (Rua Rocha, 233 – Bela Vista).

Attending will be Mário Schapiro, a professor at the FGV Law School; Juana Kweitel and Caio Borges, respectively director and lawyer for the Business and Human Rights project at Conectas; Rodomarque Tavares, a representative of the Central Bank; Alexandre Raslan, a prosecutor from the Mato Grosso do Sul state Public Prosecutor’s Office; and Carlos Thadeu, technical manager of IDEC (Brazilian Institute for Consumer Defense).

During the event, there will be a presentation of the study on the rules and standards of transparency, accountability to society and socio-environmental impact assessment mechanisms of the BNDES, the country’s leading development financing institution.

Registration is free but places are limited to the number of seats in the auditorium.

Click here to register.

Development for the people?

The study “

Development for the People? BNDES Financing and Human Rights” reveals that the lack of transparency at one of the world’s largest development banks prevents affected communities and wider society from monitoring the effectiveness of the tools the institution claims it has to ensure that its loans do not end up financing private business ventures that violate human rights in Brazil or abroad.

The study also identifies weaknesses in the methods for preventing and mitigating socio-environmental impacts, in addition to an absence of direct dialogue with communities and a mechanism for receiving complaints and reports of human rights violations by the financed projects.

The analyses and recommendations in the publication are based on research that involved direct questions posed to the bank and an analysis of official documents, financial statements, technical reports, court rulings, Freedom of Information requests, Brazilian legislation and international norms, as well as interviews with people directly and indirectly associated with the actions of the bank.


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