Not Yet Curtains for BRICs

With Goldman Sachs folding up its haemorrhaging BRIC fund, is it curtains for the acronym that defined the investment bankers’ fancy for emerging markets? It certainly appears so after China’s stock market crash and a fast slowing economy triggered fears that the dragon will set off the next global recession.

Asia Wants Paris Climate Talks to Tackle Historic Emissions and Make Some Real Change

On a late Friday afternoon as choking smog descended on the Indian Capital, Francois Richier, the French ambassador to India , took some hard questions from scores of journalists about the upcoming climate change talks in Paris this month.

Analysis: More Countries Want More Babies

Concerned with the consequences of demographic decline and population ageing, especially with respect to economic growth, national defence and pensions and health care for the elderly, a growing number of governments are seeking to raise birth rates. Whereas nearly 40 years ago 13 countries had policies to raise fertility, today the number has increased four-fold to 56, representing more than one-third of the world’s population.

Opinion: China’s New South-South Funds – a Global Game Changer?

South-South cooperation is usually seen as a poor second fiddle to North-South aid in the world of development assistance. Indeed, developing countries’ policy makers themselves insist that South-South cooperation can only supplement but not replace North-South cooperation.

Opinion: Economic Slowdown Threatening Progress

Slower economic growth since 2008, and especially with the commodity price collapse since the end of last year, threatens to reverse the exceptional half-decade before the financial crash when growth in the South stayed ahead of the North. From 2002, many developing countries – including some of the poorest– had been growing much faster after a quarter century of stagnation in Africa, for example.

Opinion: Demography and Destiny

The demographic revolutions the world is experiencing are profound and far-reaching, affecting virtually every aspect of human society. Whether in politics, business, international relations, environmental affairs or even personal matters, understanding the fundamental demographic changes underway and anticipating their juggernaut consequences can contribute considerably to the setting of meaningful goals, designing effective strategies and achieving genuine progress.

Opinion: India’s Compact with Africa

The third India-Africa Forum Summit to be held in New Delhi later this month – in which 54 African countries will participaate – is expected to result in a deeper engagement between India and Africa. This summit takes place at a time when both need each other more than ever before. Both remain bright spots in a bleak and blighted growth landscape. Out of 189 countries, only 63 are expected to grow by 4 per cent and more this year, 36 of which are in Africa. But many countries there are adversely impacted by China's diminishing appetite for commodities and shrinking trade. India is currently one of the fastest growing economies in the world.

Opinion: The Early History of Iran’s Nuclear Programme

Iran has had a nuclear programme since 1959 when the United States gave a small reactor to Tehran University as part of the “Atoms for Peace” programme during Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi’s reign.  When the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) was introduced in 1968 and entered into force in 1970, Iran was one of the first signatories of that Treaty.

Opinion: Iran and the Non-Proliferation Treaty

Iran’s nuclear programme has been the target of a great deal of misinformation, downright lies and above all myths. As a result, it is often difficult to unpick truth from falsehood. 

Sustainable Settlements to Combat Urban Slums in Africa

Slums are a curse and blessing in fast urbanising Africa. They have challenged Africa's progress towards better living and working spaces but they also provide shelter for the swelling populations seeking a life in cities.

Despite Treaty, Conventional Arms Fuel Ongoing Conflicts

Despite last year’s Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), the proliferation of conventional weapons, both legally and illegally, continues to help fuel military conflicts in several countries in the Middle East and Africa, including Syria, Iraq, Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia, Libya and Yemen.

Opinion: A Farewell to Arms that Fuel Atrocities is Within Our Grasp

The recent explosions that apparently destroyed a 2,000-year-old temple in the ancient city of Palmyra in Syria were yet another grim example of how the armed group calling itself the Islamic State (IS) uses conventional weapons to further its agenda.

Opinion: Brazil Poised on Verge of Unstable Equilibrium

As the political situation in Brazil appears to be reaching a state of unstable equilibrium, or more bluntly, as it is transformed from instability to impasse, the economy continues to deteriorate.

China’s Economy Has Sounded the Alert; Will Latin America Listen?

For years, Latin America has exported its raw materials to China’s voracious factories, fuelling economic growth. But now that the Asian giant is putting a priority on domestic consumption over industrial production, how will this region react?

Opinion: European Federalism and Missed Opportunities

"A serious political and social crisis will sweep through the euro countries if they do not decide to strengthen the integration of their economies. The euro zone crisis did not begin with the Greek crisis, but was manifested much earlier, when a monetary union was created without economic and fiscal union in the context of a financial sector drugged on debt and speculation.”

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