Globalisation

COVID-19 Pandemic has Shown Humanity at its Best– & at its Worst

WHO and UNICEF have a long, deep and very special relationship. Neither of us could do what we do without the other. UNICEF’s success is WHO’s success, and we are proud to be your partner on so many issues: Ebola, polio, maternal health, nutrition, infection prevention and control, primary health care – the list is long.

TNCs Reviving TPP Frankenstein

The incoming Biden administration is under tremendous pressure to demonstrate better US economic management. Trade negotiations normally take years to conclude, if at all. Unsurprisingly, lobbyists are already urging the next US administration to quickly embrace and deliver a new version of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

Italy and the Dubious Honor of Chairing the G20

For 2021, Italy has been given chairmanship of the Group of 20, which brings together the world’s 20 most important countries. On paper, they represent 60% of the world’s population and 80% of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP). While the shaky Italian government will somehow perform this task (in the general indifference of the political system), the fact remains that this apparently prestigious position is in fact very deceiving: the G20 is now a very weak institution that brings no kudos to the rotating chairman. Besides, it is actually the institution which bears the greatest part of responsibility for the decline of the UN as the body responsible for global governance, a task that the G20 has very seldom been able to face up to.

America has a Chequered Past in International Environmental Diplomacy

When it comes to international environmental diplomacy, America has a chequered past. It stood at the forefront of the international battle to fix the ozone hole and has shaped many key international agreements. Sadly, US positions are not always built on solid political ground at home. Twice, in the climate change process, this has led to the United States forging an agreement, only to then walk away. This happened with the 1997 Kyoto Protocol which then Vice-President Gore flew to Japan to sign in the full knowledge that a Republican dominated Senate would never ratify the deal. It happened again five years ago, with former President Obama closing that landmark deal (and John Kerry signing at the UN), only for President Trump to tear it up a few weeks later.

A Vaccine That Was Hijacked by the Rich

There is a longstanding belief that virtually everything in this world is stacked up against the poor and the downtrodden. The Covid-19 vaccine is no exception because some of world’s richest nations, including the US, Canada and UK, seem to have cornered most of the supplies -- whilst marginalizing the world’s poorer nations.

UN Special Session on COVID-19 Must Recognize Right to Health & Access to Vaccines

The holding of this Special Session (the 37th in the history of the UN) is of considerable importance. It is a unique opportunity to define and implement joint actions at the global level to fight the pandemic in order to ensure the right to life and health for all the inhabitants of the Earth. As the President of the UN General Assembly wrote in his letter of convocation: "Let us not forget that none of us are safe until we are all safe".

G20 Puts More into Fossil Than Green Energy in Covid-19 Recovery Packages

As the world’s leading economies direct trillions of dollars towards Covid-19 recovery packages, a significant proportion is going to fossil fuel industries without climate stipulations, according to the 2020 edition of the Climate Transparency Report – which has assessed the climate performance of G20 countries.

COVID-19 Compounding Inequalities

The United Nations’ renamed World Social Report 2020 (WSR 2020) argued that income inequality is rising in most developed countries, and some middle-income countries, including China, the world’s fastest growing economy in recent decades. Inequality dimensions While overall inter-country inequalities may have declined owing to the rapid growth of economies like China, India and East Asia, national inequalities have been growing for much of the world’s population, generating resentment.

African Languages Matter: Is There Still Time to Prevent Cultural Genocide?

As a 10 year-old newly arrived in Lagos from England, I recall listening intently to how the Yoruba language - my father's language - was spoken. I would constantly repeat in my head or verbally repeat what I thought I had heard. I was not always successful. Many times, what would come out of my mouth would throw my friends into fits of laughter.

The Armored Divisions of the European Union

An anecdote tells, never sufficiently confirmed, that in the hardest moments of the Second World War when Stalin was dictating his orders of battle to his subordinates, he was told that perhaps it would be advisable to consult with the Pope. The Soviet dictator replied: "And how many armored divisions does the Pope have?"

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

Does COVID-19 Imply an End to the Epoch of Science?

Around the 16th century there was a radical shift in the way humans perceived nature.  New thinking in physics, chemistry, biology and mathematics heralded a deeper understanding of the world around us.  Between the 17th and 18th century this new thinking had resulted in spate of technological inventions such as the steam engine, railways, electricity and the telephone.

Energy Transition and Post-Covid Recovery, a Challenge for Latin America

The way forward for energy transition and its link to an economic recovery after the depression caused by the covid-19 pandemic is focusing attention in Latin America and Europe, according to the 2nd Madrid Energy Conference (MEC), which concluded this Friday 2.

‘Populist’ Macroeconomic Policy

‘Ethno-populism’ has emerged and spread in recent decades in response to the mixed consequences of neoliberal globalization. It appropriates nationalist rhetoric for narrow ethnic, religious, cultural or other communal ends, typically with a chauvinist, jingoist rejection of selected Others as politically expedient.

SDGs: It’s Not Just About Collecting Data, it’s What You Do With it

The unprecedented challenges posed by COVID-19 have reminded us that we are an interconnected global community. While this crisis rightly has dominated our attention, we must not lose sight of progress on the broader aims of the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement.

The Culture of Peace: Change our World for the Better in the Age of COVID 19

Last year, we paid tribute to the 20th Anniversary of the 1999 Declaration of the Program of Action on a Culture of Peace. Today, we need to ask ourselves if we had genuinely carried out our moral responsibilities to transition from a culture of hatred and violence to a culture of tolerance and peace.

TikTok, Trump and the Need for a Digital Non-Aligned Movement

Recent weeks have seen a dramatic escalation in the U.S.’ stance towards tech companies from the People's Republic of China (PRC). After hounding the telecommunications company Huawei for years, the social networking app TikTok is the latest Chinese company to enter the firing line.

Regressive Taxation Must Be Reversed

With many in the world experiencing declining living standards, there has been growing frustration. Many hope that progressive taxation will improve things. While some economies once had progressive tax systems, recent decades have seen regression.

CPTPP Trade Liberalization Charade Continues

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement should be dead and buried after President Trump announced US withdrawal immediately after his inauguration in January 2017. After all, most major US presidential candidates in the last election, including Hillary Clinton, had opposed the TPP.

Why the African Free Trade Area Could be the Game-Changer for the Continent’s Economies

Most economists see structural transformation as one of the main routes to Africa’s sustainable development. What it means is changing the share of agriculture, manufacturing and services in an economy. It is a central aim of the African Union’s Agenda 2063.

Financialization: Tackling the Other Virus

The 1971 Bretton Woods (BW) system collapse opened the way for financial globalization and transnational financialization. Before the 1980s, most economies had similar shares of trade and financial openness, but cross-border financial transactions have been increasingly unrelated to trade since then.

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