Roger Moody : The Risks We Run
Mining, communities and political risk insurance
Fear is big business, as insurance brokers devise new policies to cover the consequences of tsunamis, adverse climate change, 'terrorist' attacks and similar events. But one form of insurance is hardly ever talked about, while its (public) providers and its beneficiaries are relatively unknown. 'Political Risk Insurance' (or PRI) is provided, not to people, but to large scale industrial projects which may actually increase the risks to neighbouring communities.
'Political Risk Insurance' (PRI) is crucial to the financing of major third world development projects. PRI is intended to cover foreign investors for losses due to nationalisation, restriction on financial transfers, breach of contract, war or 'revolution.' PRI is made available out of public funds by institutions such as the World Bank's MIGA, USA's OPIC, Canada's EDC and UK's ECGD. Without PRI many large projects would not be able to proceed.
The Risks We Run is the first major critique of PRI. The book focuses on its most controversial aspect: PRI provided for large scale mines. Roger Moody maintains that the involved export credit agencies have woefully failed to anticipate the disastrous consequences of their promotion of mining, while providing PRI for major mining projects counteracts sustainable development.
Benefitting from his own long experience of mining's impacts, and citing informed testimony from six different countires, the author presents a compelling case for doing away with PRI altogether.
""Want to hear about the hidden architecture of the global economy? Roger Moody reveals the hit and run tactics of political risk insurers and export credit agencies who make the world safer for investors, but fail to protect the people and environments affected by mining projects. This is a story that the World Bank and other multilateral agencies don't want you to hear!" – Stuart Kirsch, Assistent Professor of Anthropology, the University of Michigan
"Beautifully written, elegantly argued – and hugely important. Roger Moody guides us through the seamy world of corporate welfare, export credits and investment insurance – a world in which public money subsidises private gain at the expense of the very poorest on earth. The case he makes for scrapping government-backed insurance schemes is not just convincing, it is overwhelming."
Nick Hildyard - The Cornerhouse, UK.
“The Risks We Run is an excellent overview of Political Risk Insurance and the case studies are immensily valuable.”
Chris Grove - International Network for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
"Comprehensive, powerfully argued, well informed and thoroughly researched, Roger Moody’s book offers the ultimate statement on the uneasy relationship between mining corporate power and local communities characterised by wealth and technology asymmetry, livelihood struggles and political instability. The analysis articulated by this work is as empowering as it is sobering. It provokes thought and invites action, call for activists, policy makers, development workers and above all to those communities that strive for social justice to examine the essence of praxis and the need for a theory of action."
M. A. Mohamed Salih - Professor of Politics of Development, University of Leiden and former Vice Chair, International Human Dimension of Global Change, Bonn, Germany."
Roger Moody, the author of four previous books (including The Gulliver File - one of the Guardian's Top Ten Green books for 1993 - and Into the Unknown Regions), lives in London. He is the founder of Minewatch International and managing editor of the Mines and Communities Network.To contact Roger Moody on any aspect of this book, please email him at: