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Norwegian Audit Finds Loans to Developing Countries Don’t Follow New Lending Standards
Last week, Norway became the first lending country to audit the loans it made to developing countries. The consultant firm Deloitte assessed whether past Norwegian loans to governments, including repressive regimes in Egypt and Indonesia, were compliant with current principles of responsible lending and borrowing developed by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).
“Norway is leading by example and is serious about addressing the debt crisis,” said Eric LeCompte, Jubilee USA’s Executive Director who was part of the UN expert group that designed the principles of responsible lending and borrowing. “Every G20 country needs to follow Norway’s example.”
Deloitte’s audit found that Norway complied with older standards at the time of loan contraction but that many of the loans do not meet UNCTAD’s current principles of responsible lending and borrowing. Reports compiled by Jubilee USA’s Norwegian counterpart, SLUG, investigated Norway’s loans to Indonesia, Egypt and Myanmar.
“We hope the Norwegian government will take the next step of this critical audit and cancel illegitimate debt such as the debts of Egypt and Indonesia,” stated Gina Ekholt, Director of the Norwegian Coalition for Debt Cancellation (SLUG).
Jennifer Tong is the Communications Director for Jubilee USA Network. Jubilee USA Network is an alliance of more than 75 US organizations, 250 faith communities and 50 Jubilee global partners working. Jubilee’s mission is to build an economy that serves, protects and promotes participation of the most vulnerable. Jubilee USA has won critical global financial reforms and more than $130 billion in debt relief to benefit the world’s poorest people. http://www.jubileeusa.org.