Answer: 641 million dollars.
Avaaz, the global campaigning network, has taken the commendable step of launching a petition demanding governments and financial institutions cancel the debt owed by Haiti. This is a demand I hope campaign groups and political organisations will pick up on and rally around. It is the practical and humanitarian antidote to the corporate vultures swooping down on Haiti, treating Naomi Klein's 'The Shock Doctrine' as a how-to manual instead of a political critique.
Here's the appeal from Avaaz:
'As Haiti begins to receive desperately needed funds to cope with the earthquake, it still owes hundreds of millions of dollars in debt - a legacy of loans from global financial institutions and donor nations to unelected governments of years past.
If these debts aren't cancelled, Haiti will be sending tens of millions to the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and IMF even as it struggles to rescue and rebuild.
Sign the petition below, and Avaaz will deliver it to the IDB, the IMF, and donor governments like the United States to urge them to cancel the debt immediately - and to make sure that earthquake relief doesn't create a new debt burden.'
Sign the petition HERE.
Recommended reading: Our role in Haiti's plight