Despite its dismal record, the Gates Foundation-sponsored Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) announced a new five-year strategy in September after rebranding itself by dropping ‘Green Revolution’ from its name.
The sun is shining, and the temperature sits at an idyllic 28 degrees Celsius. The Uber driver taking me to work is from Pakistan and devastated about the recent loss to England in the T20 Cricket World Cup final in Australia.
Countries worldwide, and as different as India, Indonesia, Iraq, Iran, Ireland, Israel and Italy, are struggling with the issue of how best to balance diversity and meritocracy across disparate ethnic, racial, caste, linguistic and religious subgroups in their populations.
The ongoing plunder of Africa’s natural resources drained by capital flight is holding it back yet again. More African nations face protracted recessions amid mounting debt distress, rubbing salt into deep wounds from the past.
With much less foreign exchange, tax revenue, and policy space to face external shocks, many African governments believe they have little choice but to spend less, or borrow more in foreign currencies.
In this moment of profound challenge in international relations, it was understandable that the conclusion of the G20 meeting left leaders feeling relieved that the meeting took place without a breakdown. Leaders were justifiably proud too of important steps forward they made including the launch of the new pandemics fund.
The global population is projected to reach 8 billion on 15 November 2022, signalling major improvements in public health that have lowered the risk of dying and increased life expectancy. But the moment is also a clarion call for humanity to look beyond the numbers and meet its shared responsibility to protect people and the planet, starting with the most vulnerable.
The latest annual climate conference has begun in the face of a worsening climate crisis and further retreats by rich nations following the energy crisis induced by NATO sanctions after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Copping out again
The 27th Conference of the Parties (COP 27) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is now meeting
in Sharm-el-Sheikh, Egypt, from 6 to 18 November 2022.
Global population is about to reach 8 billion, a mere 11 years after it reached 7 billion
. The official Day of 8 Billion
is observed by the UN November 15, though it's hard to pinpoint exactly when we pass the actual milestone.
Developing countries have long been told to avoid borrowing from central banks (CBs) to finance government spending. Many have even legislated against CB financing of fiscal expenditure.
Central bank fiscal financing
Such laws are supposedly needed to curb inflation – below 5%, if not 2% – to accelerate growth. These arrangements have also constrained a potential CB developmental role and government ability to respond better to crises.
Widespread adverse reactions to the UK government’s recent ‘mini-budget’ forced new Prime Minister Liz Truss to resign. The episode highlighted problems of macroeconomic policy coordination and the interests involved.
Fourteen-year-old Priti Pyne was returning from school in Basra village in South 24 Parganas, West Bengal, when she and a friend came across a cold-drink seller selling an attractive-looking drink. The moment the girls sipped it, however, they felt dizzy. When they woke up, it was on a Delhi-bound train at Sealdah station in Kolkata. With the help of other passengers, the girls managed to get off the train.
Preoccupied with enhancing their own ‘credibility’ and reputations, central banks (CBs) are again driving the world economy into recession, financial turmoil and debt crises.
Ten years ago, the Asia-Pacific region came together and designed the world’s first set of disability-specific development goals: the Incheon Strategy to “Make the Right Real” for Persons with Disabilities. This week, we meet again to assess how the governments have delivered on their commitments, to secure those gains and develop the innovative solutions needed to achieve fully inclusive societies.
Lourdes Barreto, 47, says that as an agroecological small farmer she has improved her life and that of Mother Earth. "I love myself as I love Mother Earth and I have learned to value both of us," she says in her field outside the village of Huasao, in the highlands of the southern Peruvian department of Cuzco.
Governments and international financial institutions must adopt new ways of providing post-pandemic support, say campaigners after a report found that in many poorer countries, big business benefitted most from Covid-19 recovery funds. At the same time, vulnerable communities have been “left behind.”
The dogmatic obsession with and focus on fighting inflation in rich countries are pushing the world economy into recession
, with many dire consequences, especially for poorer countries. This phobia is due to myths shared by most central bankers.
Central banks (CBs) around the world – led by the US Fed, European Central Bank and Bank of England – are raising interest rates, ostensibly to check inflation. The ensuing race to the bottom is hastening world economic recession.
Inflation phobia among central banks (CBs) is dragging economies into recession and debt crises. Their dogmatic beliefs prevent them from doing right. Instead, they take their cues from Washington: the US Fed, Treasury and Bretton Woods institutions (BWIs).
After general elections on the 12th September, Sweden is on the threshold of a new era. The Sweden Democrats
(SD) won almost 21 percent of the votes and thus became the largest in a bloc of right-wing parties that now have a collective majority in the parliament. A nation that for a long time prided itself of being a beacon of tolerance and openness will now experience a historical transformation. The Sweden Democrats
was once founded by Nazi sympathisers and for decades shunned by mainstream politicians. However, SD has now tipped the political scale in a country previously known for its stable and predictable politics, and some of the party’s former foes are now willing to co-rule with them.
Policymakers have become obsessed with achieving low inflation. Many central banks adopt inflation targeting (IT) monetary policy (MP) frameworks in various ways. Some have mandates to keep inflation at 2% over the medium term. Many believe this ensures sustained long-term prosperity.
International Equal Pay Day, observed officially by the United Nations on 16 September, aims to draw attention to the gender pay gap – the difference between what a woman earns compared to a man for work of equal value – and the systemic inequalities it is rooted in.