MAC/20: Mines and Communities

Kyrgyzstan citizens attack World Bank

Published by MAC on 2006-12-06

Kyrgyzstan citizens attack World Bank

6 December 2006

The biggest single foreign exchange earner for the Central Asian republic of Kyrgyzstan is the Kumtor gold mine, operated by Centerra (a subsidiary of Canadia's CAMECO - the world's biggest uranium producer).

The mine has been a target of domestic and international opprobrium for all its past ten years history. Backed by the World Bank/IFC from its inception, the Kumtor project has (of couse) been touted as a critical means of reducing poverty. But, according to the official figures this is flatly untrue.

Last month Kyrgyz citizens vociferously demonstrated against a new "debt relief" programme brokered between the government and the Bank. Declared a representqtive of the Forum of Young Politicians: "Behind the screen of writing off debts, they will privatize our energy and mining sectors. "It's all in the interests of superpowers."

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