Members and Partners of GATJ Participate in the Civil Society Policy Forum


11 Apr 2023



11 Apr 2023


This week (11-14 April), members and partners of the Global Alliance for Tax Justice (GATJ) are participating in the Civil Society Policy Forum (CSPF), taking place during the World Bank Group (WBG) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Spring Meetings. With a hybrid format, the forum brings together representatives of civil society organisations to dialogue and exchange on global economy issues and international development. 

“The convening of civil society is imperative, as it is an opportunity to connect struggles and to strategize for the changes we need in the global economic system so that it actually works for people and the planet,” said Riska Koopman, policy advocacy and campaigns coordinator at GATJ.

She continued: “While the negative impacts of the WB/IMF’s Structural Adjustment Programmes can still be felt today in many countries across the globe, studies show that 85% of the world population will face austerity cuts this year, which only leads to the reduction of resources to fund public services, and the increase of unsustainable debts, affecting the most vulnerable. As Ministers of Finance are gathering at the WB/IMF Spring Meetings, we stand in solidarity with our members and partners calling for the end of austerity, and pushing for tax justice as an alternative for a rights-based economy.”

Check out some of the sessions being organised by GATJ’s members and partners:


12 April – 9 am to 10:30 am EST
Achieving Debt Crisis Resolution That Delivers Today and in the Future

Rising debt burdens in low- and middle-income countries constrain their response to urgent people’s needs in an adverse and uncertain context. This unfolding debt crisis poses risks to all regions in the global south and ultimately constitutes a risk to global economic and financial stability. We will hear from different regional realities how the current instruments to deal with debt resolution are insufficient and unfit to address the current and future debt challenges. Proposals to help countries avoid the debt trap, dealing with overlapping crises and boosting an equitable recovery will also be discussed.


  • Patricia Miranda – Red Latinoamericana por Justicia Económica y Social (Latindadd) 
  • Jason Braganza – African Forum and Network on Debt and Development (AFRODAD)
  • Mae Buenaventura – Asian People’s Movement on Debt and Development (APMDD)
  • Maia Colodenco – former head of the International Affairs Unit, Argentina’s Ministry of Economy
  • Mark Flanagan – IMF

Location: HQ2-03B-768B Lecture Room
Must be registered to join in person. No registration is needed to access the livestream, available at:


12 April – 11:30 to 1 pm EST 
The role of SDRs in the MENA region in times of debt and austerity 

This session aims at understanding the technicalities of Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) and discussing the role that can play in just development in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. The session will also address issues related to the potential of debt-free rechanneling of SDR and how that can contribute to structural reform of the economy in MENA. Speakers will also echo the main governance and transparency issues of SDRs within the region and highlight the impact of the debt crisis in MENA.  


  • Imene Cherif – Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES) MENA
  • Andres Arauz – Center for Economic and Policy Research 
  • Ahmad Awad – Phenix Center for Economic and Informatics Studies 
  • Omar Ghannam – Social Justice Platform 
  • Karim Trabelsi – Union Générale Tunisienne du Travail (UGTT) 
  • Nathan Porter – IMF

Location: IMF HQ2-03B-768B meeting room (Check here for most updated info)
Must be registered to join in person. No registration is needed to access the livestream, available at:


12 April – 11 am to 12:30 pm EST 
Remedy for those who need it—Communities respond to IFC proposed remedial framework 

A core commitment guiding Multilateral Development Banks’ (MDBs) work is ensuring that their investments “do no harm” to people or the environment. An essential corollary of this principle is that when MDBs’ investments result in harm, MDBs must ensure that remedy is provided. So far, MDBs have not provided remedy to many impacted communities, resulting in a well-known and accepted “remedy gap.” IFC has released its draft Approach to Remedial Action to address this remedy gap. During this session, communities and advocates will respond to IFC’s proposed remedy plan, revealing what a community-led and rights-based remedy framework should look like. 


  • Sarah Dorman – CIEL 
  • Robi Chacha Mosenda – Policy Associate, Accountability Counsel 
  • Fernanda Hopenhaym – UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights 
  • Aaron Pedrosa – Philippines Movement for Climate Justice 
  • Piotr Mazurkiewicz – IFC

Location: World Bank I building – 2-250 (Check here for most updated info).
Must be registered to join in person. No registration is needed to access the livestream, available at:


12 April – 2:30 pm to 4 pm EST
IMF’s strategy on social spending facing austerity—New direction or bandaid? 

Civil society welcomed the IMF’s new policy on social spending in 2019. However, there is concern that spending on social protection, health and education is still not given sufficient priority in government budgets. Indeed, there is fear that conditionality in IMF country programs will continue to negatively impact essential social spending. Join the discussion on how should the IMF and other international agencies, labour movements and CSOs each work to enhance and protect national social spending programs; and how might international cooperation be strengthened to assure more adequate, efficient, universal and sustainably financed social protection and social services in all countries.


  • Alex Campbell – International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) 
  • Rodrigo Cerda – IMF 
  • Shahrashoub Razavi – International Labour Organisation (ILO)
  • Alexander Kentikelenis – Oxfam International 
  • Ahilan Kadirgamar – University of Jaffna in Sri Lanka

Location: IMF HQ2-03B-768B meeting room (Check here for most updated info)
Must be registered to join in person. No registration is needed to access the livestream, available at:


13 April – 10 am to 12:30 pm EST
How governments can respond to the cost-of-living crisis – and why they must

Panel 1: Cost of Living Protests – Why Governments Must Respond

  • Cathy Feingold – ITUC
  • Michael Bröning – FES New York
  • Naomi Hossain – American University
  • William Spriggs – AFL-CIO
  • Abdel Rahmen El Lahga – University of Tunis

Panel 2: How can governments respond to the cost-of-living crisis?

  • Isabel Ortiz – Initiative for Policy Dialogue
  • Shari Spiegel – UN-DESA 
  • Shahra Razavi – ILO
  • Rodrigo Cerda – IMF
  • Karim Trabelsi – UGTT
  • Alex Campbell – ITUC

Location: AFL-CIO Headquarters (Solidarity Room), 815 Black Lives Matter Plz NW Washington.
Register here. Facebook livestream link


13 April – 2 pm to 3:30 pm EST
Making a real difference? Lessons from the financing of health and education for the WB Evolution Roadmap 

The World Bank Group has proposed its Evolution Roadmap, and the focus includes a need for greater financing. Drawing from evidence on the impact of different financing approaches on the provision of public services (health and education), this session will challenge us to avoid past mistakes and to think beyond the numbers to address the quality and impacts of financing. 


  • Lene Lind – WB (TBC)
  • Marialisa Motta – WB 
  • Anjela Taneja – Oxfam International 
  • Daniela Gabor – UWE Bristol 
  • Allana Kembabazi – Initiative for Social and Economic Rights (ISER)

Location: World Bank I building room 2-220 (Check here for most updated info)
Must be registered to join in person. No registration is needed to access the livestream, available at:


14 April – 08:30 am – 10 am EST
Financing just energy transitions: The importance of ensuring civic space in addressing the climate crisis

Civil society plays a critical role in ensuring that energy transition plans are just and effective in addressing the climate crisis, yet this role is undermined by shrinking civic space. This session will explore trends and cases of threats to climate leaders and offer recommendations on how development partners can ensure civic space and safeguard civil society voices.


  • David Hunter, American University Washington College of Law
  • Bruce Shoemaker, Researcher and Author
  • Lidy Nacpil – APMDD
  • TrendAsia Indonesia representative (TBC)
  • Josh Klemm – International Rivers
  • World Bank (TBC)

Must be registered to join in person. No registration is needed to access the livestream, available at:


14 April – 10:30 am to 2:30 pm ET
Jubilee USA Vigil and Press Conference: Protecting Lives, Livelihoods and Planet

10:30 am – 2 pm ET: Vigil
2 pm – 2:30 pm ET: Press Conference

  • Bishop Charles Kasonde – Association of Episcopal Conferences of Eastern Africa (AMECEA)
    Rev. Charles Chilufya, Jesuit Conference of Africa and Madagascar (JCAM) 
  • Patricia Miranda – Latindadd
  • Athena Peralta – World Council of Churches 
  • Eric LeCompte – Jubilee USA Network

Full schedule:

Location: Community Park 1824-1884 H St NW, Washington, DC 20006
Register by clicking here


14 April – 12 pm to 1:30 pm EST
Uses and Impacts of SDRs in Developing Countries: Advancing Climate Action and the 2030 Agenda  

The IMF’s 2021 Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) allocation provided swift, indispensable crisis relief for developing countries around the world, without harmful conditions or additional debt, and at zero cost to any IMF member country. But while this issuance proved critical, the global economic situation remains dire. In addition to the continued fallout of the pandemic, developing countries face international economic shocks from the war in Ukraine, a likely impending global recession, and the devastating impacts of a climate crisis for which they bear little responsibility. This panel will explore the impacts and uses of the 2021 issuance, and the potential role of a new issuance in enabling countries to weather the continued crisis, take climate action, and realize the 2030 Development Agenda. 

  • Alex Main – Center for Economic and Policy Research 
  • Patricia Miranda – Latindadd
  • Richard Kozul-Wright – UNCTAD 
  • Avinash Persaud – CARICOM Commission on the Economy 
  • Lara Merling – Boston University Global Development Policy Center
  • Jason Braganza – AFRODAD

Location: Must be registered to join in person. No registration is needed to access the livestream, available at:


14 April – 12 pm to 1:30 pm EST
Voices of the Global South: Taxation and polycrisis 

The high-level panel Voices of the Global South: Taxation and polycrisis will present the latest tax developments in Colombia and Brazil, while showcasing the leadership of India in convening a space for the Global South through the G20 presidency as well as the leadership of Colombia by strengthening coordination within the region and within Global South countries. It will also discuss how the IMF can play a decisive role in supporting progressive tax initiatives and an ambitious global tax reform, as alternatives to austerity. 


  • Jose Antonio Ocampo, Minister of Finance, Colombia 
  • Fernando Haddad, Minister of Finance, Brazil 
  • Jayati Gosh, ICRICT commissioner 
  • Vitor Gaspar, head of IMF Fiscal Affairs Department (TBC) 
  • TBD, Ministry of Finance, Costa Rica

Location: IMF HQ2-03B-768B
Must be registered to join in person. No registration is needed to access the livestream, available at:


14 April – 2:15 pm EST 
Time to get macro? Gendered effects of World Bank macroeconomic policy amidst IFI reform 

Amidst growing calls for reform of the international financial architecture, and while the World Bank shapes its next ‘Gender Strategy Update’, civil society groups are reigniting calls for the Bank to look inwards and assess the gendered effects of its wider macroeconomic policy. Topics such as privatisation, conditionalities attached to Development Policy Finance loans, austerity, and the still ‘gender blind’ Environmental and Social Framework will be explored. Panellists will examine the Bank’s contribution to wider structural harms against women, girls and sexual and gender minorities (SGMs), and yield an opportunity for WB staff to reflect on alternative proposals offered by feminist economists and civil society alike. 


  • Elaine Zuckerman – Gender Action 
  • Sonia Phalatse – FEMNET

Location: World Bank I building – 2-220 (Check here for most updated info)
Must be registered to join in person. No registration is needed to access the livestream, available at:


14 April – 2:30 pm to 4 pm EST
How can the global south achieve climate justice under debt burden and austerity?


  • Jax Bongon – IBON International
  • Nadia Hmaity – ActionAid Ghana
  • Ivana Vasić-Lalović – Center for Economic and Policy Research
  • Mark Flanegan – IMF  
  • Shereen Talaat – Arab Watch Coalition

Location: IMF HQ2-03B-768B. To join virtually, please use this Zoom link.


Photo credit: World Bank Group / International Monetary Fund

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