Category: Odious Debts

When big dams spell disaster: assessing the Lesotho Highlands Water Project

(December 1, 1997) The Lesotho Highlands Water Project has its origins in the apartheid era. Lesotho Highlands communities are supporting the project, despite the destruction it has caused to their homes and arable land. South African environmental organisations, however, oppose it for various reasons. Steve Rothert explains why this project challenges traditional perspectives about large dams and development.

When big dams spell disaster: assessing the Lesotho Highlands Water Project

(December 1, 1999) The Lesotho Highlands Water Project has its origins in the apartheid era. Lesotho Highlands communities are supporting the project, despite the destruction it has caused to their homes and arable land. South African environmental organisations, however, oppose it for various reasons. Steve Rothert explains why this project challenges traditional perspectives about large dams and development.

The new mercantilists

(November 30, 1999) One year before mexico touched off the Third World’s debt crisis by suspending payments to foreign creditors, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher rose proudly to announce in the House of Commons that her government had just committed millions to the Mexican government to build the $2 billion Sicartsa steel plant:

Givers and takers

(November 30, 1999) Most Taxpayers in the rich industrialized countries believe, as the Pearson Commission inquiry into foreign aid believed, that “it is only right for those who have to share with those who have not.” Much of the Western World’s sharing, though, has been in the form of loans, not gifts. The Third World has borrowed about one-third of the $400 billion in foreign aid that it has received from the rich countries’ national aid agencies.

PRESS RELEASE Philippine government to dismantle Marcos’ nuclear plant

(October 19, 1999) The debt-ridden Philippine government has decided to dismantle and sell the assets of the Bataan nuclear plant. The $2.3-billion (U.S. dollars throughout) plant, a painful reminder of the Ferdinand Marcos regime, costs Filipino taxpayers more than $170,000 a day in interest and accounts for more than 5 per cent of the country’s total debt.