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U.S.-based companies are eagerly circling soon-to-be-privatized Vietnamese state owned companies

U.S.-based companies are eagerly circling soon-to-be-privatized Vietnamese state owned companies. Their representatives “said that they are seeking information and opportunities to increase their investment and join the ongoing privatization/equitization of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and the capital hikes of banks in Vietnam. They made their remarks at a dialogue held by the Vietnam-Singapore Friendship Association (VSFA) and the US-ASEAN Business Council (US-ABC) in Singapore on November 26-29. The event was co-chaired by former U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam Michael Michalak and Dr. Vu Viet Ngoan, chairman of VSFA-head of the prime minister’s advisory group. Present at the event were representatives of the U.S. firms such as Visa, Facebook, Paypal, Metlife, Agoda, AIG, MasterCard and the executives from Vietnamese firms including VPBan, MBS, TPBank, Vietcombank, Saigon Securities Inc., VNPAY, and Petrolimex.” [Vietnam News Brief Service, 30 November 2018].


CUPE is raising concerns about the lack of transparency at Canada’s infrastructure bank

The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) is raising concerns about the lack of transparency at Canada’s infrastructure bank. “Bank CEO Pierre Lavallée recently told a friendly crowd at the annual conference of the Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships the bank has looked at 55 potential projects – half of which are unsolicited ideas from corporations designed to feed their bottom lines, not serve the public interest. (…) With work clearly underway behind the scenes, Canadians need full transparency about the bank and the projects it’s considering. The CIB takes aim at our roads, bridges, water and transit systems, and will hand unprecedented control of critical projects to for-profit corporations. As Canadians, we’ve built this infrastructure together. It belongs to us all, and it’s not for sale.”

Source: Canadian Union of Public Employees

IL&FS crisis may sound death knell for PPP

The default crisis that has struck IL&FS (largest Indian shadow banks), flagbearer of the public-private partnership (PPP) programme, may be the last straw for this once-promising avenue of infrastructureNSE -3.24 % development, experts and executives said, adding that the government will have to take over that role once more. The private sector’s enthusiasm for investment in infrastructure has in any case been waning for some time now, they said.

Documents (5)

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Diversifying Public Ownership. Constructing Institutions for Participation, Social Empowerment and Democratic Control (by Andrew Cumbers)

This paper advocates a form of economic democracy based around diverse forms of public ownership. It does not prioritize one particular scale but recognizes the importance of decentralized forms of public ownership, to encourage greater public participation and engagement, mixed with higher level state ownership, for strategic sectors and planning for key public policy goals (e.g. tackling climate change). It takes a deliberately pluralistic definition of public ownership, recognizing both state ownership and the role that cooperatives and employee ownership could play in a more democratic economy.


The economics of the Cascade Approach: A critical introduction to Tito Cordella. Daniela Gabor (UWE Bristol)

Daniela Gabor (UWE Bristol). The story: the paper models the conditions under which the cascade approach sequencing is optimal. The cascade sequencing is: Reforms (liberalisation), Subsidies/guarantees (de-risking) and Public solution (RSP). The model accepts that the MFD approach to crowding in private finance creates trade-offs. These trade-offs may require different sequencings: subsidies first, or public solution first.


Investment banking: linkages to the real economy and the financial system (By Kushal Balluck of the Bank’s Banking and Insurance Analysis Division)

Investment banks play a key role in capital markets and contribute to the efficient functioning of financial markets. As demonstrated in the recent financial crisis, however, investment banks can create and propagate risks in the financial system given their scale, as well as the interconnected and complex nature of their activities. Recognising investment banks’ systemic importance, a number of international regulatory initiatives have come into force since the onset of the recent financial crisis. The first section of this article provides a summary of the services provided by investment banks. No prior knowledge of this type of financial institution is assumed. The second section then explains conceptually how the various functions of investment banks can serve the real economy through a number of channels, including via the financial system.

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CSOs as equal partners in monitoring public finance

CSOs as equal partners in monitoring public finance started from 2016 with the aim to improve accountability and transparency of the public finance in targeted countries and strengthen Civil Society Organisations’ (CSOs) role and voice in monitoring the institutions’ performance in that area. Key project activities are research and monitoring, advocacy, capacity building and transfer of knowledge/practices and networking in the field of the 4 specific topics: • public debt, • public-private partnerships, • tax equity and • infrastructure projects. More about the project and our work can be found here:

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