Economy & Trade

Can Sustainable Bioeconomy be a Driver of Green Growth?

On April 19-20, I attended the second Global Bioeconomy Summit in Berlin. Bioeconomy is currently a hot topic for scientists and policymakers. Rapid advances in molecular biology combined with big data and artificial intelligence have resulted in big jumps in our understanding of living organisms as well as organic matter, the biomass produced by plants and animals, at the level of their DNA. That has gone hand in hand with technologies that allow scientists and industry to manipulate, easily, everything from enzymes to bacteria to plants and animals.

From Mega to Micro, a Transition that Will Democratise Energy in Brazil

An energy transition is spreading around the globe. But in Brazil it will be characterised by sharp contrasts, with large hydroelectric plants being replaced by solar microgenerators and government decisions being replaced by family and community decision-making.

Over to You, Children! Zambia’s ‘Plant a Million Trees’ Takes Root

Trees are a vital component in the ecosystem—they not only give oxygen, store carbon, stabilise the soil and give refuge to wildlife, but also provide materials for tools, shelter and ultimately, food for both animals and human beings.

India Pledges $50 Million More to UN Partnership Fund

At a time when funding for UN agencies is on the decline – and also threatened with cuts by the Trump administration—the Indian government has made an additional contribution of $50 million to development funding.

We Are Migrants: Teasing Italian Taste Buds

Atik and Said have many things in common. They are both from Bangladesh, both are about the same age, in their thirties and, they are both migrant workers in an Italian restaurant in the heart of Rome, a stone’s throw from Saint Peter’s Basilica. They are not the only migrants working in the food service industry in Italy, where most of the pizza makers today are Egyptians and most of the Chefs are either Bangladeshis or North Africans. This is an interesting phenomenon in a country known for its cuisine where many of the Chefs today are not locals but foreigners.

Dreaming of A New Sustainable Economy

Officials from around the world came together to create and support a vision for a new, sustainable economy: a bioeconomy.Almost 1000 bioeconomy experts, from former heads of state to civil society leaders, convened in Berlin for the second Global BIoeconomy Summit to discuss best practices and challenges.

FAO and El País Launch Series of Books on “The State of the Planet”

Today the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) hosted an event at its headquarters in Rome, to present a set of eleven books jointly realized in collaboration with the Spanish newspaper El País.

Improving Our Anti-money Laundering Operations Will Help Prevent Great-Power War

Interest is growing in illicit finance because great-power competition is playing out in boardrooms, stock markets, trade wars, and compliance departments. The US anti-money laundering (AML) regime needs an update that enhances national security and sets an example for the rest of the world.

Latin America Faces Uphill Energy Transition

Latin America is facing challenges in energy efficiency, transportation and power generation to move towards a low carbon economy and thus accelerate that transition, which is essential to cut emissions in order to reduce global warming before it reaches a critical level.

New GCF Project Signals Paradigm Shift for Water-Scarce Barbados

At the start of 2017, the Caribbean Drought and Precipitation Monitoring Network (CDPN) warned eastern Caribbean countries that they were facing “abnormal climate conditions” and possibly another full-blown drought. 



Another Debt Crisis for Poor Countries?

When the world’s finance ministers and central bank governors assemble in Washington later this month for their semi-annual IMF meeting, they will no doubt set aside time for yet another discussion of the lingering debt problems in the Eurozone or how impaired bank debt could impact financial stability in China.

DR Congo’s Mai-Ndombe Forest ‘Savaged’ As Landless Communities Struggle

Thousands of logs loaded into makeshift boats at the port of Inongo at Lake Mai-Ndombe stand ready to be transported to Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Brexit Reopens Old Wounds in Northern Ireland

In a bus sits a man wearing a chequered shirt and cap. His age is difficult to determine. He could be 45, 55 or 65 years old; life treats us so differently.

Food Is the Answer: Perugia International Journalism Festival

The twelfth International Journalism Festival on April 12-15 has drawn 710 speakers from 50 different countries, becoming the biggest journalism festival in Europe.

Tunneling Through the Andes to Connect Argentina and Chile

Visionaries imagined it more than 80 years ago, as a way to strengthen the integration between Argentina and Chile. Today it is considered a regional need to boost trade flows between the two oceans. Work on a binational tunnel, a giant engineering project in the Andes, is about to begin.

Caribbean Eyes Untapped Potential of World’s Largest Climate Fund

The Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) also known as the 5Cs, is looking for ways to boost the region’s access to the Green Climate Fund (GCF).

The UN tells private enterprise leaders that “Business as Usual Won’t Work”.

As global citizens face an array of issues from unemployment to discrimination, affecting their livelihoods and potential, a UN agency called upon businesses to employ a new, sustainable, and inclusive model that benefits all.

UN’s Zero Hunger Goal Remains a Daunting Challenge

The United Nations, which is battling some of the world’s worst humanitarian crises in Asia, the Middle East and Africa, still remains focused on one of its equally daunting undertakings: how to achieve Zero Hunger by 2030.

Drowning for Progress in Cambodia

Suddenly the road ends. The cart track disappears under the water. A vast lake stretches out in front of me. I have to transfer from a motorbike to a canoe. "Tuk laang," my guide says coolly. "The water is rising."

International Community Ramps Up Action on Venezuela Crisis

One year into the most recent series of protests and a humanitarian crisis with no end in sight, international groups have called for action to help protect Venezuelans.A complex political and economic crisis in Venezuela has left millions without access to basic services and resources, prompting UN agencies and human rights groups like Human Rights Watch to speak up and urge action.

Ten reflections on today’s crisis

It is now clearly evident that w e are in a period of transition, even though we remain uncertain as to its outcome.The political, economic and social system that has accompanied us since the end of the Second World War is no longer sustainable.

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