Economy & Trade

In the Face of a Pandemic, the World Turns to Trade

Greatly affected by the coronavirus pandemic, international trade can play a key role in the economic recovery, but it must overcome obstacles, such as protectionism and commercial disputes, especially between the United States and China.

Crisis alla Turca II – From Currency Crisis to Debt Crisis?

The meltdown of the Turkish currency that began in 2018 has continued unabated with the decline reaching unprecedented proportions in recent days.  The causes of that turmoil including underlying financial fragilities and political shocks were discussed in a previous piece by this author.  Since then the economy has become even more vulnerable in these respects. 

Global Data Community’s Response to COVID-19

The world is currently counting more than 42 million confirmed cases of the COVID-19 and over 1 million deaths since the start of the pandemic.1

Finance Covid-19 Relief and Recovery, Not Debt Buybacks

In July, the UN Secretary-General warned that a “series of countries in insolvency might trigger a global depression”. Earlier, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) had called for a US$2.5 trillion coronavirus crisis package for developing countries.

The United Nations, 75 Years Young: Engaging Youth Social Entrepreneurs to Accelerate the SDGs

This year, the United Nations is marking its 75th anniversary – a milestone of extraordinary economic and social progress in Asia and the Pacific. While the Organization enjoys a lifespan almost equal to the world’s improved average life expectancy, the future lies with those who have recently embarked on theirs: our young people.

Reaching Remote Women Through Inclusive Technology

The coronavirus pandemic has impacted the way people value working from home, career building, and their overall approach to utilising downtime. It has blurred out the lines between hobby, casual reading, and how time is spent away from work.

Can Agroecology Feed the World?

Producing food and ensuring nutrition security, protecting the environment and restoring biodiversity, building sustainable and fair food systems: That’s the promise of agroecology.

GGGI and SEA to develop four mitigation activities generating ITMOs in energy, waste, and manufacturing

Following the cooperation agreement signed in December last year for the Mobilizing Article 6 Trading Structure (MATS) Program, the Swedish Energy Agency (SEA) and the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) have agreed to further develop four mitigation activities with the goal of completing transactions of internationally transferred mitigation outcomes (ITMOs). 75% of these activities will come from GGGI's pipeline of bankable projects across its Members and partners. Out of the four proposed activities, two will target the energy sector in Ethiopia, one will be focused on the waste sector in Nepal, and one will focus on the manufacturing sector in Cambodia.

The Plight of Domestic Workers in Brazil

The inclusivity of Brazilian society is put to the test as the coronavirus pandemic highlights a labour sector ripe with historical and structural inequality: domestic work.

Human Trafficking Survivor Harold D’Souza: “The Perpetrators are More Aggressive Than Ever”

The fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic continues: as more people around the world lose their livelihoods, human trafficking is on the rise. Support services for survivors have been shut, and past gains to combat it have been reversed. Funding has dried up.

Enhanced Social Protection an Opportunity Asia Pacific Must Grasp

In the fight against COVID-19, success has so far been defined by responses in Asia and the Pacific. Many countries in our region have been hailed as reference points in containing the virus. Yet if the region is to build back better, the success of immediate responses should not distract from the weaknesses COVID-19 has laid bare. Too many people in our region are left to fend for themselves in times of need. This pandemic was no exception. Comprehensive social protection systems could right this wrong. Building these systems must be central to our long-term recovery strategy.

Limited Liability: Profit Without Responsibility

Limited liability protection for shareholders in joint stock companies was introduced to encourage investments in them. However, it has encouraged irresponsibility, causing much harm while generating profits without responsibility. Limited liability limits responsibility Columbia Law School’s Professor Katarina Pistor has extended her critique of the legal system to emphasize the implications of such limited liability. Limited liability encourages shareholders not to pay attention to the harm corporations they invest in may do.

NESFAS Partner Communities Celebrate World Food Day

World Food Day, a day dedicated to tackle world hunger, is annually celebrated on October 16, 2020 globally. To commemorate this day, the North East Slow Food and Agrobiodiversity Society (NESFAS) along with its partner organisations — Society for Urban and Rural Empowerment (SURE) and North East Network (NEN), Nagaland — hosted several programmes across 27 communities in Meghalaya and Nagaland. It may be mentioned here that all government SOPs and measures were followed during the events.

Is the IMF Encouraging World Financial Leaders to Walk Blindly Towards More Austerity?

This week the world’s Ministers of Finance and Central Bank Governors meet virtually at the 2020 Annual Meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank and decide on the fate of the world. This year’s gathering is particularly important, given that the world is confronting an unprecedented crisis. Governments are struggling to finance emergency care and urgent socioeconomic support to cope with the COVID19 pandemic.

High Tech, Low Labour?

In the glitzy Dolby Theater in Hollywood Heights, with stars dressed in hundred thousand-dollar garbs, Parasite—a film about inequality, class tension and the fault lines of capitalism—won big. I couldn’t help but recall South Korean director Bong Joon-ho’s earlier 2013 film, Snowpiercer.

How the Pacific Islands are Balancing COVID-19 Survival Demands on Coastal Fisheries with Sustainable Management

Coastal fisheries in the Pacific Islands have become a food and livelihood lifeline to many people who have lost jobs, especially in urban centres and tourism, following COVID-19 lockdowns and border closures. Now governments and development organisations are trying to meet the crisis-driven survival needs of here and now, while also considering the long-term consequences on near shore marine resources and habitats.

Milton Friedman Versus Stakeholder Capitalism

Milton Friedman was arguably the most influential economist of the second half of the 20th century, associated with promoting ‘neo-liberal’, free-market, shareholder capitalism. Friedman’s monetarist economics is now widely considered irrelevant, if not wrong, especially with the low inflation associated with ‘unconventional’ monetary policies following the 2008-2009 global financial crisis.

COVID’s Impact in Real Time: Finding Balance Amid the Crisis

One enduring lesson from the COVID-19 pandemic is that any lasting economic recovery will depend on resolving the health crisis.

Gendering Agriculture so Women Take the Lead in Feeding Africa

Africa’s hopes of feeding a population projected to double by 2050 amidst a worsening climate crisis rest on huge investments in agriculture, including creating the conditions so that women can empower themselves and lead efforts to transform the continent’s farming landscape.

Scaling Up SDG4 in Crises

Out of global crises spring opportunities for change. In crisis, change is not an option. It is a necessity. And, as Plato famously noted: “Necessity is the mother of invention.” Education Cannot Wait (ECW) is an invention that sprang out of crisis and was borne of necessity.

Social Audit Reforms and the Labor Rights Ruse

The recent refusal by five international auditing firms to inspect for labor abuses in Xinjiang was the right response to the severe human rights violations there. But this is a moment for the auditing and certifications industry, which assesses the compliance of work sites with human rights and labor rights standards, to rethink its approach to “social audits”—periodic workplace inspections—everywhere.

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