Today, around 21,000 children died around the world. This daily tragedy, from poverty and other preventable causes, rarely makes headline news.

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World

  1. As Climate Crisis Worsens & Poverty Rises, UN Appears Off-Track on Development Agenda

    Wednesday, September 18, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Sep 18 (IPS) - The two key goals in the UN's development agenda are the eradication of extreme poverty and hunger by 2030.

    But most of the world's developing nations, currently fighting a losing battle against rising poverty and hunger –and suffering from the devastating impact of climate change-- are likely to miss the deadline for most of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), according to the latest report by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

  2. Key Changes in International Agriculture and Rural Development Issues: Three Priority Areas in the Context of the 2030 Development Agenda

    Wednesday, September 18, 2019

    ACCRA, Sep 18 (IPS) - Transformations in international agricultural and rural development issues

    Some major changes in international agricultural and rural development over the last 30-40 years need to be taken into account in efforts to promote sustainable development and an inclusive rural transformation (IFAD 2016) as we approach the third decade of the millennium. This opinion piece, drawing on a longer article published in Agriculture for Development Journal (Summer 2019 Issue)seeks to stimulate reflection and debate on how work to support agricultural and rural development can evolve to address key challenges and opportunities related to migration, sustainable urbanization and youth in a changing global policy context.

  3. Developing Economies’ Subordinate Financialization

    Tuesday, September 17, 2019

    KUALA LUMPUR and PENANG, Sep 17 (IPS) - Rapid financial globalization is due not only to financial innovations, but also to choices made by national policymakers, often with naïve expectations, trusting promoters' promises of steady net inflows of financial resources.

  4. Tana River Bears the Cost of Development

    Tuesday, September 17, 2019

    Sep 17 (IPS) - Geoffrey Kamadi reports for InfoNile on the Tana River. InfoNile is a geojournalism platform mapping data on water issues in the Nile River basin of Africa with journalism stories to promote transboundary peace. The damming of Kenya's River Tana and the environmental degradation upstream, has reduced the amount of silt and water reaching the Tana River Delta over time. Hence the sea has been pushing further and further inland unhindered, jeopardising livelihoods.

  5. UN Chief Calls for Action, Not “Beautiful Speeches”

    Tuesday, September 17, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Sep 17 (IPS) - UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has offered an unsolicited piece of advice to the 190-plus speakers, including heads of state and heads of government, who will address an unprecedented six high level plenary meetings during the General Assembly sessions September 23-27.

  6. African Development Bank Plans for a Self-sufficient, Integrated and Industrialised Continent

    Monday, September 16, 2019

    JOHANNESBURG, South Africa/BULAWAYO, Zimbabwe, Sep 16 (IPS) - Arama Sire Camara, a fruit and vegetable seller in the province of Kindia, some 135 km from the Guinean capital of Conakry, feels safer trading well into the night thanks to the Rural Electrification Project, financed by 21-million-dollar investment by the African Development Bank.

    "With lighting on the road at night and illuminating our goods, it means we are safer, especially with all the cars on the road. You can work for longer after nightfall, and so we can make more of our products," she says.

  7. World’s Whale Population Struggles to Recover from Carnage Amid Serious Concerns

    Monday, September 16, 2019

    COLOMBO, Sri Lanka, Sep 16 (IPS) - Sri Lanka is endowed with an impressive and large concentration of whales off its shores and it is believed they are not a population that migrates seasonally. 26 species have been spotted in Sri Lankan waters, including the massive blue whales.

  8. Time to Put Data at the Heart of UN’s 2030 Agenda

    Monday, September 16, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Sep 16 (IPS) - The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development was adopted in 2015. At its core are 17 Sustainable Development Goals and 169 targets, all meant to guide efforts by all countries towards a more sustainable, prosperous and equal future.

  9. Asian & Arab Parliamentarians to Move Forward on Reproductive Health & Gender Empowerment

    Monday, September 16, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Sep 16 (IPS) - Over the years, the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) has worked in tandem with legislators and parliamentarians to help implement the historic Programme of Action (PoA) adopted unanimously by over 20,000 UN delegates at a landmark International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in Cairo back in 1994.

  10. UNAIDS and WHO Africa Leaders Should Prioritize Women’s Health

    Friday, September 13, 2019

    ABUJA, Sep 13 (IPS) - Two African women were recently appointed to top global health positions: Winnie Byanyima as the Executive Director of UNAIDS and Dr. Matshidiso Moeti reappointed as the World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Director for Africa.

  11. More stories…

Economy

  1. Key Changes in International Agriculture and Rural Development Issues: Three Priority Areas in the Context of the 2030 Development Agenda

    Wednesday, September 18, 2019

    ACCRA, Sep 18 (IPS) - Transformations in international agricultural and rural development issues

    Some major changes in international agricultural and rural development over the last 30-40 years need to be taken into account in efforts to promote sustainable development and an inclusive rural transformation (IFAD 2016) as we approach the third decade of the millennium. This opinion piece, drawing on a longer article published in Agriculture for Development Journal (Summer 2019 Issue)seeks to stimulate reflection and debate on how work to support agricultural and rural development can evolve to address key challenges and opportunities related to migration, sustainable urbanization and youth in a changing global policy context.

  2. Developing Economies’ Subordinate Financialization

    Tuesday, September 17, 2019

    KUALA LUMPUR and PENANG, Sep 17 (IPS) - Rapid financial globalization is due not only to financial innovations, but also to choices made by national policymakers, often with naïve expectations, trusting promoters' promises of steady net inflows of financial resources.

  3. African Development Bank Plans for a Self-sufficient, Integrated and Industrialised Continent

    Monday, September 16, 2019

    JOHANNESBURG, South Africa/BULAWAYO, Zimbabwe, Sep 16 (IPS) - Arama Sire Camara, a fruit and vegetable seller in the province of Kindia, some 135 km from the Guinean capital of Conakry, feels safer trading well into the night thanks to the Rural Electrification Project, financed by 21-million-dollar investment by the African Development Bank.

    "With lighting on the road at night and illuminating our goods, it means we are safer, especially with all the cars on the road. You can work for longer after nightfall, and so we can make more of our products," she says.

  4. Time to Put Data at the Heart of UN’s 2030 Agenda

    Monday, September 16, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Sep 16 (IPS) - The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development was adopted in 2015. At its core are 17 Sustainable Development Goals and 169 targets, all meant to guide efforts by all countries towards a more sustainable, prosperous and equal future.

  5. A New World? Are the Americas Returning to Old Problems?

    Thursday, September 12, 2019

    STOCKHOLM / ROME, Sep 12 (IPS) - When I in 1980 first arrived in America it was a new world to me. I went from New York to Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic and like so many visitors and migrants before me I was overwhelmed by both familiar and strange impressions. Familiar due to books I had read and movies I had seen, strange since I encountered unexpected things and new because both I and several of those I met compared themselves to the "old world", i.e. Euroasia and parts of Africa.

  6. The Push for Peace-From the Global Village to the Global Neighborhood

    Wednesday, September 11, 2019

    NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 11 (IPS) - From the ashes of a tragedy that wiped out almost 90% of the city of Hiroshima on 5 August 1945, an institute called the Hiroshima Peacebuilders Center (HPC) rose like a phoenix of hope that is pioneering the creation of a global pool of peacebuilders. It is driven by the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development declaration that "there can be no sustainable development without peace and no peace without sustainable development."

  7. Let’s Get Climate Action into Traction with Gender Equality

    Wednesday, September 11, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Sep 11 (IPS) - Climate change is already altering the face of our planet. Research shows that we need to put all our efforts over the coming decade to limit warming to 1.5°C and mitigate the catastrophic risks posed by increased droughts, floods, and extreme weather events.

  8. Dumping Fossil Fuels to Drive Green Development

    Wednesday, September 11, 2019

    CAPE TOWN, South Africa, Sep 11 (IPS) - Disinvestments in fossil fuels amounting to 11 trillion dollars – eight times the global GDP – have been recorded in the last six months of this year, according to a new report.

  9. India Promotes South-South Cooperation, but Key Questions Unaddressed

    Tuesday, September 10, 2019

    Sep 10 (IPS) - At his speech at the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) summit in Delhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi emphasised South-South cooperation and technology solutions, but issues of land ownership dog the ongoing negotiations.

  10. Farm Workers Paying the Prize for Cheap South African Wine

    Monday, September 09, 2019

    SOUTH AFRICA, Sep 09 (IPS) - Systembolaget, the Swedish government-owned alcohol monopoly, promises fair conditions – but it also uses its purchasing power to put a downward pressure on prices. At the major South African wine producer Leeuwenkuil, workers suffer as the company tries to cut costs. So far, none of the South African suppliers have been stopped due to violations against Systembolaget's code of conduct.

  11. More stories…

Climate

  1. As Climate Crisis Worsens & Poverty Rises, UN Appears Off-Track on Development Agenda

    Wednesday, September 18, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Sep 18 (IPS) - The two key goals in the UN's development agenda are the eradication of extreme poverty and hunger by 2030.

    But most of the world's developing nations, currently fighting a losing battle against rising poverty and hunger –and suffering from the devastating impact of climate change-- are likely to miss the deadline for most of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), according to the latest report by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

  2. Key Changes in International Agriculture and Rural Development Issues: Three Priority Areas in the Context of the 2030 Development Agenda

    Wednesday, September 18, 2019

    ACCRA, Sep 18 (IPS) - Transformations in international agricultural and rural development issues

    Some major changes in international agricultural and rural development over the last 30-40 years need to be taken into account in efforts to promote sustainable development and an inclusive rural transformation (IFAD 2016) as we approach the third decade of the millennium. This opinion piece, drawing on a longer article published in Agriculture for Development Journal (Summer 2019 Issue)seeks to stimulate reflection and debate on how work to support agricultural and rural development can evolve to address key challenges and opportunities related to migration, sustainable urbanization and youth in a changing global policy context.

  3. Tana River Bears the Cost of Development

    Tuesday, September 17, 2019

    Sep 17 (IPS) - Geoffrey Kamadi reports for InfoNile on the Tana River. InfoNile is a geojournalism platform mapping data on water issues in the Nile River basin of Africa with journalism stories to promote transboundary peace. The damming of Kenya's River Tana and the environmental degradation upstream, has reduced the amount of silt and water reaching the Tana River Delta over time. Hence the sea has been pushing further and further inland unhindered, jeopardising livelihoods.

  4. World’s Whale Population Struggles to Recover from Carnage Amid Serious Concerns

    Monday, September 16, 2019

    COLOMBO, Sri Lanka, Sep 16 (IPS) - Sri Lanka is endowed with an impressive and large concentration of whales off its shores and it is believed they are not a population that migrates seasonally. 26 species have been spotted in Sri Lankan waters, including the massive blue whales.

  5. Time to Put Data at the Heart of UN’s 2030 Agenda

    Monday, September 16, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Sep 16 (IPS) - The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development was adopted in 2015. At its core are 17 Sustainable Development Goals and 169 targets, all meant to guide efforts by all countries towards a more sustainable, prosperous and equal future.

  6. Asian & Arab Parliamentarians to Move Forward on Reproductive Health & Gender Empowerment

    Monday, September 16, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Sep 16 (IPS) - Over the years, the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) has worked in tandem with legislators and parliamentarians to help implement the historic Programme of Action (PoA) adopted unanimously by over 20,000 UN delegates at a landmark International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in Cairo back in 1994.

  7. Translating Ambition to Action: High Hopes for United Nations Action Week

    Friday, September 13, 2019

    New Caledonia, Sep 13 (IPS) - In less than 10 days, countries from around the planet will come together in New York for the United Nations Secretary General's Climate Action Summit. I look forward to representing the Pacific Community (SPC) at this important event, and throughout "Action Week" during the upcoming UN General Assembly.

  8. AfDB ‘s Solar Project Aims at Making Africa a Renewable Power House

    Friday, September 13, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Sep 13 (IPS) - When UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres launched the International Solar Alliance last October, he applauded the goal of mobilizing about $1 trillion dollars towards the deployment of some 1,000 gigawatts of solar energy by 2030.

  9. The Push for Peace-From the Global Village to the Global Neighborhood

    Wednesday, September 11, 2019

    NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 11 (IPS) - From the ashes of a tragedy that wiped out almost 90% of the city of Hiroshima on 5 August 1945, an institute called the Hiroshima Peacebuilders Center (HPC) rose like a phoenix of hope that is pioneering the creation of a global pool of peacebuilders. It is driven by the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development declaration that "there can be no sustainable development without peace and no peace without sustainable development."

  10. Let’s Get Climate Action into Traction with Gender Equality

    Wednesday, September 11, 2019

    UNITED NATIONS, Sep 11 (IPS) - Climate change is already altering the face of our planet. Research shows that we need to put all our efforts over the coming decade to limit warming to 1.5°C and mitigate the catastrophic risks posed by increased droughts, floods, and extreme weather events.

  11. More stories…

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Issues In depth

Latest

Action on climate change is cheaper than inaction

Posted Monday, February 02, 2015.

Many are afraid that tackling climate change is going to be too costly. But increasingly, studies are showing action will not just be cheaper than inaction, but could actually result in economic, environmental and even health benefits, while improving sustainability.

Read “Action on climate change is cheaper than inaction” to learn more.

Climate Change and Global Warming Introduction

Last updated Sunday, February 01, 2015.

The climate is changing. The earth is warming up, and there is now overwhelming scientific consensus that it is happening, and human-induced. With global warming on the increase and species and their habitats on the decrease, chances for ecosystems to adapt naturally are diminishing.

Many are agreed that climate change may be one of the greatest threats facing the planet. Recent years show increasing temperatures in various regions, and/or increasing extremities in weather patterns.

This section looks at what causes climate change, what the impacts are and where scientific consensus currently is.

Read “Climate Change and Global Warming Introduction” to learn more.

COP20—Lima Climate Conference

Posted Saturday, January 24, 2015.

An overview of the Climate Change Conference (also known as COP 20), held in Lima, Peru in December 2014.

While it seemed like it was a successful meeting, because developing nations were committed to drawing up their own plans for emissions reductions for the first time, a number of important issues were left undecided such as how financing would work.

This page is an overview of the Lima Climate conference.

Read “COP20—Lima Climate Conference” to learn more.

Ebola Outbreak in West Africa

Posted Saturday, September 27, 2014.

An overview of the Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa that has been described by the World Health Organization as the largest, most severe and most complex outbreak in the history of the disease.

The epidemic began at the end of 2013, in Guinea. From there it spread to Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Senegal. Many of the affected countries face enormous challenges in stopping its spread and providing care for all patients.

Thousands of people have died and many are at risk as the fatality rate from this virus is very high. As the crisis worsens, as well as the enormous health challenges involved, the social and economic consequences may set these countries back, reversing some gains a number of these countries have made in recent years.

Read “Ebola Outbreak in West Africa” to learn more.

Foreign Aid for Development Assistance

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

In 1970, the world’s rich countries agreed to give 0.7% of their gross national income as official international development aid, annually.

Since that time, billions have certainly been given each year, but rarely have the rich nations actually met their promised target.

For example, the US is often the largest donor in dollar terms, but ranks amongst the lowest in terms of meeting the stated 0.7% target.

Net ODA in dollars and percent of GNI

Furthermore, aid has often come with a price of its own for the developing nations. Common criticisms, for many years, of foreign aid, have included the following:

  • Aid is often wasted on conditions that the recipient must use overpriced goods and services from donor countries
  • Most aid does not actually go to the poorest who would need it the most
  • Aid amounts are dwarfed by rich country protectionism that denies market access for poor country products while rich nations use aid as a lever to open poor country markets to their products
  • Large projects or massive grand strategies often fail to help the vulnerable; money can often be embezzled away.

This article explores who has benefited most from this aid, the recipients or the donors.

Read “Foreign Aid for Development Assistance” to learn more.

Nature and Animal Conservation

Last updated Sunday, January 19, 2014.

Preserving species and their habitats is important for ecosystems to self-sustain themselves.

Yet, the pressures to destroy habitat for logging, illegal hunting, and other challenges are making conservation a struggle.

Read “Nature and Animal Conservation” to learn more.

More updates

Most Popular

Poverty Facts and Stats

Last updated Monday, January 07, 2013.

Most of humanity lives on just a few dollars a day. Whether you live in the wealthiest nations in the world or the poorest, you will see high levels of inequality.

The poorest people will also have less access to health, education and other services. Problems of hunger, malnutrition and disease afflict the poorest in society. The poorest are also typically marginalized from society and have little representation or voice in public and political debates, making it even harder to escape poverty.

By contrast, the wealthier you are, the more likely you are to benefit from economic or political policies. The amount the world spends on military, financial bailouts and other areas that benefit the wealthy, compared to the amount spent to address the daily crisis of poverty and related problems are often staggering.

Some facts and figures on poverty presented in this page are eye-openers, to say the least.

Read “Poverty Facts and Stats” to learn more.

Global Financial Crisis

Last updated Sunday, March 24, 2013.

Following a period of economic boom, a financial bubble — global in scope — burst, even causing some of the world’s largest financial institutions have collapsed. With the resulting recession, many governments of the wealthiest nations in the world have resorted to extensive bail-out and rescue packages for the remaining large banks and financial institutions while imposing harsh austerity measures on themselves.

Some of the bail-outs have also led to charges of hypocrisy due to the apparent socializing of the costs while privatizing the profits. Furthermore, the institutions being rescued are typically the ones got the world into this trouble in the first place. For smaller businesses and poorer people, such options for bail out and rescue are rarely available when they find themselves in crisis.

Plummeting stock markets at one point wiped out 33% of the value of companies, $14.5 trillion. Taxpayers bailed out their banks and financial institutions with large amounts of money. US taxpayers alone have spent some $9.7 trillion in bailout packages and plans. The UK and other European countries have also spent some $2 trillion on rescues and bailout packages. More is expected. Much more.

Such numbers, made quickly available, are enough to wipe many individual’s mortgages, or clear out third world debt many times over. Even the high military spending figures are dwarfed by the bailout plans to date.

Taxpayers are paying for some of the largests costs in history

This problem could have been averted (in theory) as people had been pointing to these issues for decades. However, during boom, very few want to hear such pessimism. Does this crisis spell an end to the careless forms of banking and finance and will it herald a better economic age, or are we just doomed to keep forgetting history and repeat these mistakes in the future? Signs are not encouraging as rich nations are resisting meaningful reform…

Read “Global Financial Crisis” to learn more.

Causes of Poverty

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

Poverty is the state for the majority of the world’s people and nations. Why is this? Is it enough to blame poor people for their own predicament? Have they been lazy, made poor decisions, and been solely responsible for their plight? What about their governments? Have they pursued policies that actually harm successful development? Such causes of poverty and inequality are no doubt real. But deeper and more global causes of poverty are often less discussed.

Read “Causes of Poverty” to learn more.

Climate Change and Global Warming

Last updated Monday, February 02, 2015.

The climate is changing. The earth is warming up, and there is now overwhelming scientific consensus that it is happening, and human-induced. With global warming on the increase and species and their habitats on the decrease, chances for ecosystems to adapt naturally are diminishing. Many are agreed that climate change may be one of the greatest threats facing the planet. Recent years show increasing temperatures in various regions, and/or increasing extremities in weather patterns.

This section explores some of the effects of climate change. It also attempts to provide insights into what governments, companies, international institutions, and other organizations are attempting to do about this issue, as well as the challenges they face. Some of the major conferences in recent years are also discussed.

Read “Climate Change and Global Warming” to learn more.

Environmental Issues

Last updated Monday, February 02, 2015.

Environmental issues are also a major global issue. Humans depend on a sustainable and healthy environment, and yet we have damaged the environment in numerous ways. This section introduces other issues including biodiversity, climate change, animal and nature conservation, population, genetically modified food, sustainable development, and more.

Read “Environmental Issues” to learn more.

Racism

Last updated Sunday, August 08, 2010.

Racism is the belief that characteristics and abilities can be attributed to people simply on the basis of their race and that some racial groups are superior to others. Racism and discrimination have been used as powerful weapons encouraging fear or hatred of others in times of conflict and war, and even during economic downturns. This article explores racism from around the world.

Read “Racism” to learn more.

More articles

Topical

Global Financial Crisis

Last updated Sunday, March 24, 2013.

Following a period of economic boom, a financial bubble — global in scope — burst, even causing some of the world’s largest financial institutions have collapsed. With the resulting recession, many governments of the wealthiest nations in the world have resorted to extensive bail-out and rescue packages for the remaining large banks and financial institutions while imposing harsh austerity measures on themselves.

Some of the bail-outs have also led to charges of hypocrisy due to the apparent socializing of the costs while privatizing the profits. Furthermore, the institutions being rescued are typically the ones got the world into this trouble in the first place. For smaller businesses and poorer people, such options for bail out and rescue are rarely available when they find themselves in crisis.

Plummeting stock markets at one point wiped out 33% of the value of companies, $14.5 trillion. Taxpayers bailed out their banks and financial institutions with large amounts of money. US taxpayers alone have spent some $9.7 trillion in bailout packages and plans. The UK and other European countries have also spent some $2 trillion on rescues and bailout packages. More is expected. Much more.

Such numbers, made quickly available, are enough to wipe many individual’s mortgages, or clear out third world debt many times over. Even the high military spending figures are dwarfed by the bailout plans to date.

Taxpayers are paying for some of the largests costs in history

This problem could have been averted (in theory) as people had been pointing to these issues for decades. However, during boom, very few want to hear such pessimism. Does this crisis spell an end to the careless forms of banking and finance and will it herald a better economic age, or are we just doomed to keep forgetting history and repeat these mistakes in the future? Signs are not encouraging as rich nations are resisting meaningful reform…

Read “Global Financial Crisis” to learn more.

Climate Change and Global Warming

Last updated Monday, February 02, 2015.

The climate is changing. The earth is warming up, and there is now overwhelming scientific consensus that it is happening, and human-induced. With global warming on the increase and species and their habitats on the decrease, chances for ecosystems to adapt naturally are diminishing. Many are agreed that climate change may be one of the greatest threats facing the planet. Recent years show increasing temperatures in various regions, and/or increasing extremities in weather patterns.

This section explores some of the effects of climate change. It also attempts to provide insights into what governments, companies, international institutions, and other organizations are attempting to do about this issue, as well as the challenges they face. Some of the major conferences in recent years are also discussed.

Read “Climate Change and Global Warming” to learn more.

Food and Agriculture Issues

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

Food and agriculture goes to the heart of our civilizations. Religions, cultures and even modern civilization have food and agriculture at their core. For an issue that goes to the heart of humanity it also has its ugly side.

This issue explores topics ranging from the global food crisis of 2008, to issues of food aid, world hunger, food dumping and wasteful agriculture such as growing tobacco, sugar, beef, and more.

Read “Food and Agriculture Issues” to learn more.

Foreign Aid for Development Assistance

Last updated Sunday, September 28, 2014.

In 1970, the world’s rich countries agreed to give 0.7% of their gross national income as official international development aid, annually.

Since that time, billions have certainly been given each year, but rarely have the rich nations actually met their promised target.

For example, the US is often the largest donor in dollar terms, but ranks amongst the lowest in terms of meeting the stated 0.7% target.

Net ODA in dollars and percent of GNI

Furthermore, aid has often come with a price of its own for the developing nations. Common criticisms, for many years, of foreign aid, have included the following:

  • Aid is often wasted on conditions that the recipient must use overpriced goods and services from donor countries
  • Most aid does not actually go to the poorest who would need it the most
  • Aid amounts are dwarfed by rich country protectionism that denies market access for poor country products while rich nations use aid as a lever to open poor country markets to their products
  • Large projects or massive grand strategies often fail to help the vulnerable; money can often be embezzled away.

This article explores who has benefited most from this aid, the recipients or the donors.

Read “Foreign Aid for Development Assistance” to learn more.

Tax Avoidance and Tax Havens; Undermining Democracy

Last updated Monday, January 07, 2013.

Through tax havens, transfer pricing and many other policies — both legal and illegal — billions of dollars of tax are avoided. The much-needed money would helped developing (and developed) countries provide important social services for their populations.

Some tax avoidance, regardless of how morally objectionable it may be to some people, is perfectly legal, and the global super elite are able to hide away trillions of dollars, resulting in massive losses of tax revenues for cash-strapped governments who then burden ordinary citizens further with austerity measures during economic crisis, for example. Yet these super elite are often very influential in politics and business. In effect, they are able to undermine democracy and capitalism at the same time.

As the global financial crisis has affected many countries, tackling tax avoidance would help target those more likely to have contributed to the problem while avoid many unnecessary austerity measures that hit the poorest so hard. But despite rhetoric stating otherwise, it does not seem to high on the agenda of many governments as you might think.

Read “Tax Avoidance and Tax Havens; Undermining Democracy” to learn more.

World Military Spending

Last updated Sunday, June 30, 2013.

World military spending had reduced since the Cold War ended, but a few nations such as the US retain high level spending.

In recent years, global military expenditure has increased again and is now comparable to Cold War levels. Recent data shows global spending at over $1.7 trillion. 2012 saw the first dip in spending — only slightly —since 1998, in an otherwise rising trend.

After a decline following the end of the Cold War, recent years have seen military spending increase

The highest military spender is the US accounting for almost two-fifths of the world’s spending, more than the rest of the G7 (most economically advanced countries) combined, and more than all its potential enemies, combined.

Read “World Military Spending” to learn more.

More issues

“If a man is offered a fact which goes against his instincts, he will scrutinize it closely, and unless the evidence is overwhelming, he will refuse to believe it. If, on the other hand, he is offered something which affords a reason for acting in accordance to his instincts, he will accept it even on the slightest evidence.” — Bertrand Russell, Roads to Freedom