Loans to impoverished countries can aggravate those nations’ problems, the Vatican’s representatives warned a UN meeting on human rights.
Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Vatican’s permanent observer at UN offices in Geneva, said that it is important to recognize the influence of political corruption in some loan arrangements.
In such cases, he said, the funds are not used to ease poverty, and might even increase economic inequalities, enriching government officials but not providing benefits to society.
Loan service also adds to the burden on developing nations, he observed.
“Unjust, and especially exploitative, economic transactions are invalid and must be made just,” the archbishop said. He added that unfair loan agreements should be ended promptly, even if they have been duly ratified by all the parties legally involved.
Archbishop Tomasi called for transparency in loan agreements involving developing nations, saying that agreements concluded in secrecy increase the opportunities for corruption and exploitation.