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 accountability 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

Honduras: CAO Closes Investigation of IFC Investment in Banco Ficohsa after Monitoring

June 13, 2019 – CAO is closing its investigation of IFC’s investment Banco Ficohsa after monitoring. Overall, CAO found that IFC’s response only partially addressed its compliance findings, but is closing the case considering that IFC has divested its equity and loan investments in Ficohsa. CAO’s second monitoring report and case details are available at the links below.Learn more about the Ficohsa-01 caseLearn more about the Ficohsa-02 case »

Albania: CAO Accepts Second Complaint Regarding IFC-Supported Enso Albania Hydropower Project

June 7, 2019 – CAO has accepted a complaint regarding the IFC-supported Enso Albania Mati hydropower plant in Albania. An assessment of the complaint is underway. More information about the case is available at the link below. Learn more about the Enso Albania-02 case

CAO Insights from the Field Featured in New IFC Podcast

June 3, 2019 - As part of IFC’s ‘In Their Own Words’ podcast series, CAO Dispute Resolution lead Gina Barbieri discusses engaging with communities and the different ways of helping people with Mimi Keita of IFC’s Infrastructure and Natural Resources Advisory team. The new series features candid conversations between sustainable development experts.Listen here

Call for Expressions of Interest from Dispute Resolution Professionals, Including Mediators

CAO is looking for experienced dispute resolution specialists interested in and able to mediate on behalf of CAO. More information about CAO’s needs and the application process is available at the below link. The deadline for applications is Friday, June 28, 2019.
Learn more

Ireland: CAO Participates in Sustainable Finance Conference

May 30, 2019 – CAO Vice President, Osvaldo L. Gratacós, participated in a high level conference in Dublin, Ireland on May 16, 2019, hosted by the Government of Ireland and Sustainable Nation Ireland. The conference, “Catalyzing Global Savings to Advance our Sustainability Goals”, convened bond issuers, investors, and other key market participants for action on the Sustainable Development Goals. Learn more

Ghana: CAO Releases Compliance Appraisal Report of IFC’s Investment in Meridian Port Services

May 20, 2019 – CAO has released its compliance appraisal report of IFC’s investment in Meridian Port Services, for the extension project of the Port of Tema in Ghana. CAO has determined that IFC’s approach to the appraisal and supervision of this project in relation to the issues raised in the complaint did not meet the threshold for compliance investigation. As a result, CAO has decided to close this case.Learn more about the MPS-01 case

Summary of CAO Cases: May 2019

May 16, 2019 - CAO’s 6-weekly summary of cases in assessment, dispute resolution, and compliance is available at the link below.Case Summary May 2019

Indonesia: CAO Accepts Complaint Regarding Palm Oil Plantation

May 16, 2019 - CAO has accepted a complaint related to environmental and social impacts of a palm oil plantation in Indonesia. An assessment of the complaint is underway. More information about the case is available at the link below. Learn more

Costa Rica: CAO Sends Reventazón Investigation Report to IFC for Official Response

May 13, 2019 – CAO has completed its compliance investigation report of IFC’s investment in the Reventazón Hydropower Project in Costa Rica, and has sent the investigation report to IFC’s management for official response. IFC has 20 working days to submit a response. The report and IFC’s response will then be sent to the President of the World Bank Group for clearance and disclosure.Learn more about the Reventazon-01 caseLearn more about the Reventazon-02 case »

Mongolia: Parties Involved in CAO Mediation Related to the IFC/MIGA Supported Oyu Tolgoi Mining Project Release New Video

May 1, 2019 - The Khanbogd Tripartite Council (TPC) has released a new video about their experience in the CAO mediation process, which can be viewed here. The TPC was established by the local parties as part of the CAO process, and is comprised of representatives of local herders, Oyu Tolgoi mining company, and local Khanbogd government. Learn more about the Oyu Tolgoi-01 caseLearn more about the Oyu Tolgoi-02 case »

Philippines: CAO Refers Complaint Related to IFC's Investment in Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) to Compliance

April 29, 2019 - CAO has completed its assessment of a complaint related to IFC's investment in Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC), in the Philippines. During CAO's assessment a consensus could not be reached on engaging in dispute resolution. The case has thus been referred to CAO's Compliance function for appraisal in accordance with CAO's Operational Guidelines. An assessment report is available in English and Filipino.Learn more about the RCBC-01 case

Guinea: CAO Accepts Complaint Regarding IFC-Supported Expansion of the CBG Sangaredi Mine

April 26, 2019 – CAO has accepted a complaint regarding the IFC-supported expansion of the CBG Sangaredi mine in Guinea. An assessment of the complaint is underway. More information about the case is available at the links below, in English and French. Learn morePour en savoir plus sur le dossier Guinee CBG-01 en francais »

Panama: CAO Refers Complaint Related to IFC-Supported PL IV Transmission Line Project to Compliance

April 26, 2019 - CAO has completed its assessment of a complaint related to the IFC-supported PL IV transmission line project in Panama. During CAO’s assessment a consensus could not be reached on engaging in a dispute resolution process. Given that CAO dispute resolution is voluntary, the complaint has been referred to CAO’s Compliance function for appraisal in accordance with CAO’s Operational Guidelines. The assessment report is available in English and Spanish.Learn more about the PL IV-01 case

Togo: CAO Publishes Second Compliance Monitoring Report Related to IFC’s Investment in Lomé Container Terminal

April 22, 2019 – CAO has released its second compliance monitoring report of IFC’s investment in Lomé Container Terminal, as it relates to a complaint from coastal communities who claim to be negatively impacted by the port extension project (Togo LCT-01). CAO will continue to keep the case open for monitoring. The report is available in French and English.
Learn more about the Togo LCT-01 case

Ireland: CAO Participates in the Annual Galway Business and Human Rights Symposium

April 19, 2019 – CAO staff participated in a symposium on Non-Financial Reporting: Implications for Business and Human Rights in Ireland in Galway, Ireland on April 2, 2019. The symposium was hosted by the Irish Centre for Human Rights. During the symposium CAO staff spoke about IFC/MIGA project level disclosure requirements and their applicability in international project finance, and highlighted CAO cases raising project level disclosure concerns. Learn more

CAO Dispute Resolution Event at 2019 World Bank Group Spring Meetings

April 15, 2019 - CAO co-hosted a panel discussion during the Civil Society Policy Forum at the World Bank Group Spring Meetings on “Maximizing the Benefits of Independent Dispute Resolution to Address Community Grievances”. The session, co-hosted with Accountability Counsel, took place on Wednesday, April 10, from 9:00-10:30 AM and included speakers from civil society, private sector, and IFC. CAO also participated in the orientation session for civil society on April 9 to kick off the CSO forum.Learn more about the event

Ukraine: CAO Refers Complaint Related to IFC’s Investment in Galnaftogaz Gas Stations to Compliance

April 10, 2019 - CAO has completed its assessment of a complaint related to the IFC’s investment in Galnatfogaz, which involves the construction, refurbishing, and operation of gasoline filling stations under the OKKO brand in Ukraine. During the assessment, the parties decided to have the case referred to CAO’s Compliance function for appraisal of IFC’s due diligence. An assessment report is available in English and Ukrainian, as well as IFC's response.Learn more about the Galnaftogaz-01 case

CAO Newsletter: April 2019

April 9, 2019- CAO's latest newsletter provides an update on CAO knowledge sharing activities, events at the 2019 Spring Meetings,  a new investigation report concerning an IFC investment in Kenya, two new compliance monitoring reports related to cases in Uganda and India, and progress through dispute resolution processes in Egypt and Myanmar.Learn more

India: CAO Publishes Compliance Monitoring Report Related to IFC’s Investment in India Infrastructure Fund

April 5, 2019 – CAO has released its compliance monitoring report of IFC’s investment in India Infrastructure Fund, as it relates to a complaint regarding GMR Kamalanga Energy Limited’s coal power plant in Kamalanga, Odisha. CAO will continue to keep the case open for monitoring. The report is available in English.Learn more about the IIF-01 case

Kenya: CAO Refers Complaint Related to IFC-Supported Bridge International Academies Project to Compliance

April 2, 2019 - CAO has completed its assessment of a complaint related to the IFC-supported Bridge International Academies project in Kenya.  During CAO’s assessment, Bridge indicated their willingness to engage in a dispute resolution process, while the complainants preferred the complaint to be handled by CAO’s Compliance function. As a consensus could not be reached on engaging in dispute resolution, which is voluntary, the complaint was referred to CAO’s Compliance function in accordance with CAO’s Operational Guidelines. The assessment report and IFC's response are available in English. A Kiswahili version of the report is forthcoming. Learn more about the Bridge International Academies-01 case

What's New

CAO Insights from the Field Featured in New IFC Podcast

June 3, 2019 - As part of IFC’s ‘In Their Own Words’ podcast series, CAO Dispute Resolution lead Gina Barbieri discusses engaging with communities and the different ways of helping people with Mimi Keita of IFC’s Infrastructure and Natural Resources Advisory team. The new series features candid conversations between sustainable development experts.Listen here

Mongolia: Parties Involved in CAO Mediation Related to the IFC/MIGA Supported Oyu Tolgoi Mining Project Release New Video

May 1, 2019 - The Khanbogd Tripartite Council (TPC) has released a new video about their experience in the CAO mediation process, which can be viewed here. The TPC was established by the local parties as part of the CAO process, and is comprised of representatives of local herders, Oyu Tolgoi mining company, and local Khanbogd government.
Learn more about the Oyu Tolgoi-01 caseLearn more about the Oyu Tolgoi-02 case »

CAO Newsletter: April 2019

April 9, 2019- CAO's latest newsletter provides an update on CAO knowledge sharing activities, events at the 2019 Spring Meetings,  a new investigation report concerning an IFC investment in Kenya, two new compliance monitoring reports related to cases in Uganda and India, and progress through dispute resolution processes in Egypt and Myanmar.  Learn more

CAO Dispute Resolution Event at 2019 World Bank Group Spring Meetings

April 15, 2019 - CAO co-hosted a panel discussion during the Civil Society Policy Forum at the World Bank Group Spring Meetings on “Maximizing the Benefits of Independent Dispute Resolution to Address Community Grievances”. The session, co-hosted with Accountability Counsel, took place on Wednesday, April 10, from 9:00-10:30 AM and included speakers from civil society, private sector, and IFC. CAO also participated in the orientation session for civil society on April 9 to kick off the CSO forum.Learn more about the event

CAO Launches Reflections from Practice Series

CAO’s Dispute Resolution function has released the first two publications in a series on Reflections from Practice. The Reflections from Practice series provides guidance for CAO Dispute Resolution staff, mediators, and consultants, and informs parties about the foundational principles guiding CAO's dispute resolution work. The first two publications in this series are "Getting Started with Dispute Resolution" and "Representation".Explore the series