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Context of '1990: Mexico Privatizes Phone Company'

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1990: Mexico Privatizes Phone Company

The Mexican government, with technical assistance from the World Bank, sells off a profitable phone company called Telmex. In the months preceding the sell-off, the Mexican government increases the rate of calls by local users from 16 pesos per minute to 115 pesos per minute in order to make the company more attractive to potential buyers. This makes the privatization of the phone system detrimental to consumers. In a 1992 report, The World Bank will admit that “the privatization of Telmex, along with its attendant pricetax regulatory regime, has the result of ‘taxing’ consumers—a rather diffuse, unorganized group—and then distributing the gains among more well-defined groups, shareholders, employees, and the government.” [Global Exchange, 9/2001, pp. 4 pdf file]

Entity Tags: World Bank, Telmex

Timeline Tags: Neoliberalism and Globalization

The World Bank approves and provides funds for a team of British private sector technical and financial consultants to advise the Argentine government on the privatization of its water and sewer sector. [CBC News, 3/31/2004]

Entity Tags: World Bank

Timeline Tags: Water

World Bank president Lewis Preston, in the luxurious dining room of the Argentine Jockey Club, over plates of smoked salmon and duck à l’orange, declares that Argentina’s “process of adjustment” is “an example for all of Latin America.” [Santoro, 2/6/2003]

Entity Tags: Lewis Preston

Timeline Tags: Water

The World Bank purchases a five percent stake in Aguas Argentinas, a consortium of private water companies that took over Buenos Aires’ public water utility in 1993. As the civil society organization Public Citizen will later note, the bank’s investment makes it “a lender in, partner in, and public relations arm of their ‘model privatization project.’” The 1993 privatization of the city’s water utility had been made under pressure from the World Bank and IMF. [Public Citizen, 6/14/2007]

Entity Tags: Aguas Argentinas, World Bank, Public Citizen

Timeline Tags: Water

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