Make Your Voice Heard

The Office of the Compliance Advisor Ombudsman gives a voice to people who believe they are negatively impacted by IFC and MIGA projects. Learn about our process of independent accountability

Arne Hoel, The World Bank

Our Mandate

The Compliance Advisor Ombudsman (CAO) is the independent recourse mechanism for the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA). The CAO responds to complaints from project-affected communities with the goal of enhancing social and environmental outcomes on the ground. Learn More

Case Update

Summary of CAO Cases: March 2017

March 29, 2017 – CAO’s 6-weekly summary of cases in assessment, dispute resolution, and compliance is available at the link below.CAO Case Summary March 2017

Chile: Complaint Regarding IFC Supported Alto Maipo Hydropower Project

March 29, 2017 – CAO has accepted a complaint regarding the IFC supported Alto Maipo hydropower project in Chile. An assessment of the case is underway with relevant parties.Learn more about this case

Honduras: Communique regarding CAO Visit Related to IFC’s Investment in Dinant

March 29, 2017 - CAO is in Honduras, March 27-31, 2017, to meet with stakeholders as part of ongoing compliance work related to IFC’s investment in in Corporación Dinant, a palm oil and food company. More details on the visit and case are outlined in this communique in English and Spanish.Learn more about this case

Uzbekistan: Indorama Kokand/Hamkor Bank-01 - CAO Complainant Released

March 24, 2017 - CAO has confirmed that Elena Urlaeva, a CAO complainant on the Indorama Kokand/Hamkor Bank-01/Uzbekistan case, has been released from the psychiatric hospital and is at home with her family. Elena was involuntarily committed to a psychiatric hospital in Tashkent on March 1, 2017. A CAO representative was able to meet with Elena at the hospital on March 7 and CAO continued to monitor her situation. The assessment period for the case has been extended and CAO intends on having more in-depth discussions with Elena, as part of the case assessment. For more details on the case, click this link.
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Peru: CAO Releases its Second Compliance Monitoring Report regarding Quellaveco and Closes the Case

March 24, 2017 - CAO releases its second compliance monitoring report of IFC's response to CAO's investigation regarding Quellaveco in Peru. CAO's report concludes that, overall, IFC’s response has not substantially addressed the investigation findings. Nevertheless, CAO has decided to close its monitoring of this investigation considering the time that has passed since IFC’s divestment from the project, and IFC’s decision not to engage in a project level response with its former client or the affected communities. The report in English and Spanish, IFC's response, and more information about the case, are available at the link below.Learn more about this case

Ukraine: Axzon Case Transfers to CAO Compliance for Appraisal of IFC

March 23, 2017 - CAO has concluded a dialogue process in Ukraine between local community members and Axzon A/S’s Ukrainian subsidiary, Danosha. The case has been transferred to CAO Compliance for appraisal of IFC’s performance related to the project, as per CAO’s Operational Guidelines. CAO has issued a conclusion report summarizing the dialogue process, which is available in both English and Ukrainian.Learn more about the case here

CAO Launches New Interactive Grievance Mechanism Toolkit

March 22, 2017 - CAO has launched its new interactive Grievance Mechanism Toolkit (http://www.cao-grm.org/) which is designed to respond to challenges faced by small and medium companies in implementing effective grievance mechanisms. CAO is hosting a discussion and lunch event as part of its launch of the toolkit on Wednesday, April 5, 2017, 12:00-1:00 PM. Learn more about the toolkit and event here

Uzbekistan: Indorama Kokand/Hamkor Bank-01 - Detainment of CAO Complainant

March 17, 2017 -  Elena Urlaeva, a CAO complainant on the Indorama Kokand/Hamkor Bank-01/Uzbekistan case, was involuntarily committed to a psychiatric hospital in Tashkent on March 1, 2017. A CAO representative was able to meet with Elena at the hospital on March 7 and CAO continues to monitor her situation. The assessment period for the case has been extended and CAO intends on having more in-depth discussions with Elena upon her release, as part of the case assessment. For more details on the case, click this link.  Case documentation can be accessed through this link.Learn more about this case

Egypt: Complaint regarding IFC supported Egyptian Indian Polyester Company (EIPET) project

March 13, 2017 - CAO has accepted a complaint regarding the IFC supported Egyptian Indian Polyester Company (EIPET) project in Egypt. An assessment of the complaint is underway with relevant parties.Learn more about this case

Uganda: CAO Compliance Appraisal in relation to the Bujagali-05 Complaint

March 13, 2017 - CAO releases its compliance appraisal of the fifth complaint regarding IFC's investment in Bujagali Energy and MIGA guarantee in World Power Holdings, in Uganda. As a result of the compliance appraisal, CAO has decided to close this case. The appraisal report and more information about the case are available at the link below.Learn more about this case

Uganda: Complaint Regarding Subsidiary of IFC Supported Bidco Africa Project

March 9, 2017 – CAO has accepted a complaint regarding a Ugandan subsidiary of the IFC supported Bidco Africa project. An assessment of the complaint is underway with relevant parties. Learn more about this case

CAO releases its third Monitoring Report related to the Financial Intermediaries (FI) Audit

March 8, 2017 - CAO releases its third monitoring report in relation to IFC's response to the 2012 Audit of a Sample of IFC Investments in Third-Party Financial Intermediaries. In order to provide an enhanced measure of the effectiveness of IFC’s response to the FI Audit, CAO decided to review a sample of active FI investments committed under the 2012 Sustainability Framework for this third monitoring report. The report and more information about this case are available at the link below.Learn more about this case

Bangladesh: Parties to the United Ashuganj Energy Ltd complaint reach agreement through CAO-facilitated dialogue process

February 23, 2017 - The parties to the CAO-facilitated dialogue related to IFC’s United Ashuganj Energy Ltd project in Bangladesh have released a joint statement after reaching agreement to address issues raised in the complaint. The joint statement is available in both English and Bangla. The CAO process is now in the monitoring phase.
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Summary of CAO Cases: February 2017

February 14, 2017 – CAO’s 6-weekly summary of cases in assessment, dispute resolution, and compliance is available at the link below. CAO Case Summary February 2017

Honduras: CAO Assessment of complaints related to IFC’s investment in Dinant

February 14, 2017 – CAO has concluded its assessment of issues raised in two complaints related to IFC’s investment in Dinant, Honduras. The assessment was resumed after a 2-year pause to respect ongoing IFC-supported dialogue efforts in Honduras. Due to lack of agreement between the parties on pursuing a dispute resolution process facilitated by CAO, the complaints are being referred for a compliance appraisal of IFC’s due diligence.  An assessment report is available in both English and Spanish.Learn more about this case

Chad: Agreement Reached between Affected Community Members and Esso Exploration and Production Chad (EEPCI)

February 8, 2017 – Representatives of NGOs mandated by communities in Chad’s oil producing region and Esso Exploration and Production Chad (EEPCI) signed an agreement in January addressing a series of concerns filed with CAO in October 2011. The agreement is the result of a dialogue process convened by CAO since 2013. A progress report is available in both English and French, along with a press communique (English and French). Learn more about this case

India: CAO's second Monitoring Report of IFC's Response to the CGPL Investigation

February 7, 2017 - CAO releases its second monitoring report in relation to IFC's response to its 2013 investigation of IFC's investment in Coastal Gujarat Power Limited (CGPL). CAO's monitoring report and more information about this case are available at the link below.Learn more about this case

Indonesia: CAO Concludes Dispute Resolution Process related to MIGA’s Rajamandala Project

February 1, 2017 - A CAO dialogue process in Indonesia between local community representatives and a hydropower operator has led to the successful negotiation and resolution of land issues and an agreed framework for regular communication going forward. CAO has issued a conclusion report that summarizes CAO’s process and outlines the agreement that was found and fully implemented by the parties. This report marks the closure of the case and is available in both English and Bahasa. Learn more about this case

Albania: CAO Facilitates Client-Community Dialogue in partnership with IFC

January 10, 2017 - In Albania, CAO facilitated a dialogue workshop between the private sector and civil society about how conflicts around development projects may be mitigated or dealt with constructively. The workshop, organized in partnership with IFC, attracted participants from Albanian NGOs, local communities, mediation professionals, and national and international companies, including IFC clients.Learn more about this event

Mongolia: Release of Joint Fact-Finding Report Related to Oyu Tolgoi Mediation

January 17, 2017 – Parties to the CAO-led mediation related to the Oyu Tolgoi mine have released a joint fact-finding report conducted by independent experts. The report, commissioned jointly by the parties, includes a socio-economic study of herder households and Phase 2 study of the impacts of the Undai River diversion. The report will form the basis for further discussion and implementation of agreed actions between the company and herder representatives to resolve the issues presented in the complaints. The report is available in both English and Mongolian. Learn more about this case

Egypt: Communique regarding CAO's Investigation of IFC's Investment in Alexandria Development Limited

January 11, 2017 - CAO is conducting a compliance investigation of IFC's investment in a cement plant in Egypt. More details on the process are outlined in this communique in English and Arabic.Learn more about this case

Guatemala: Terms of Reference for Compliance Investigation of IFC's Investment in CIFI

January 3, 2017 - CAO publishes Terms of Reference for its upcoming compliance investigation of IFC's investment in Corporacion Interamericana para el Financiamiento de Infraestructura (CIFI), in relation to the Cambalam hydropower project located in Santa Cruz, Guatemala. The ToR and full details about this case can be found via link below. Learn more about this case

Kenya: CAO Assessment of a complaint related to IFC’s Bidco Bev. & Det. Project in Kenya (Project #33385)

January 3, 2017: CAO conducted an assessment of the issues raised in a complaint related to IFC’s Bidco Bev. & Det. Project in Kenya. Subsequent to its field visit, CAO was unable to receive a clear indication from the complainants about how they wish to move forward. As such CAO was unable to conclude the assessment process and referred the complaint to CAO’s Compliance function as per its Operational Guidelines.Learn more about this case

Colombia: Civil Society Outreach Workshop

December 5, 2016 - In early December, CAO joined more than 50 civil society representatives from across Colombia for a one-day workshop in Bogotá. The workshop, which was co-hosted by CAO, the World Bank Inspection Panel and IDB’s Independent Consultation and Investigation Mechanism (MICI), was organized together with regional CSOs, Asociación Ambiente y Sociedad and Grupo Regional sobre Financiamiento y Infraestructura (GREFI). Learn more about this event

Death of rural land rights leaders in Honduras

November 7, 2016 - It is with deep sadness and concern that CAO has learned of the deaths of two rural land rights leaders in Honduras. José Ángel Flores, president of the Unified Campesinos Movement of the Aguán (MUCA), and Silmer Dionicio George, a leader of the La Confianza farmers' cooperative, were shot dead by a group of men outside MUCA’s office in the community of La Confianza in the Bajo Aguán on October 18, 2016. MUCA is a complainant organization to CAO. CAO extends its condolences to their families, friends, and the people of Honduras.

CAO Meets with Civil Society Organizations from Across Mexico

June 15, 2016 - More than 80 representatives of Mexican civil society organizations (CSOs) from 17 Mexican states met for the first time with CAO and four other independent accountability mechanisms (IAMs) on June 8 in Mexico City. Learn more about this event

Berta Cáceres - A Powerful Voice for the Voiceless

March 7, 2016 - It is with deep sadness that we have learned of the murder of Berta Cáceres, one of the leading indigenous and environmental rights campaigners in Honduras. CAO had received a number of complaints related to hydropower and other energy projects in Honduras from Berta Cáceres, in her capacity as general coordinator and co-founder of the National Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH). For more information

What's New

CAO Newsletter: Issue 6 / Quarter 2

February 2, 2017 - CAO’s latest newsletter provides an update on progress that’s been made through a dispute resolution process in Indonesia, CAO’s facilitation of private sector-community dialogue in Albania, CAO’s release of two Compliance investigations, and outreach in Ukraine and Colombia, amongst other updates.CAO Newsletter - Issue 6

CAO ANNUAL REPORT 2016: Solutions + Accountability + Learning

October 6, 2016: A Focus on Impacted Communities—In Cambodia, a company in dialogue with local communities agrees to halt land clearance around rubber plantations. In Indonesia and India, CAO publishes compliance reports in relation to the environmental and social impacts of IFC investments. For a full report on CAO's activities in FY2016, click the below link. A summary of the report is also available below in both English and Spanish.
CAO Annual Report 2016

CAO Annual Report 2016 (Spanish)
Summary Leaflet (English)
Summary Leaflet (Spanish)