Mr. Yasuaki Yamaura from CUJ will make a speech about demands of Japanese farmers and consumers at the Asian Development Bank NGO Forum in Kyoto, Japan on May 6, 2007.
NGO Forum on ADB (FORUM) is an Asian-led network of non-government and community-based organizations that support each other to amplify their positions on Asian Development Bank’s policies, programs, and projects affecting life forms, resources, constituents – the local communities.
From a loose network since 1992, network partners agreed in 1999 to evolve the network into an independent organization. Since then, the NGO Working Group became known as the NGO Forum on ADB. Forum was legally incorporated in the Philippines in May 2001.
Over the past decade and a half, the campaign has brought some modest yet significant gains. The ADB campaign has contributed to changes in the Bank’s policy in terms of:
* improved social and environmental guidelines for projects
* new Bank-wide lending priorities
* Bank initiatives in defining sectoral priorities on forestry, energy, population, involuntary resettlement, and information disclosure,
* a more open attitude to dialogue with NGOs and communities,
* and more recently, the Bank’s shift to poverty reduction as its “overarching framework.”
Since the NGO Working Group was created, practical lessons have been gained from the campaign experience. Whether the ADB can match its newly-enlightened policy rhetoric, however, will depend largely on the continued vigilance, monitoring and action by NGOs, public interest groups and social movements.