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Issue 4/Jul-Aug 2008

Article no: EN20090202-Issue-4-2008

Issue 4/Jul-Aug 2008

* Global Economic Slowdown: The LCDs' Sword of Damocles. The warnings of a new UNCTAD report
The world´s 50 poorest nations saw the values of their exports climb by a collective 80% from 2004-2006 and recorded their highest rates of economic growth in 30 years, even surpassing the 7% target set by their governments and their development partners. But their increased dependence on selling a few unsophisticated products ? primarily petroleum, low-technology manufactures, minerals, ores, metals, and farm goods ? leaves them vulnerable to a reversal, this year?s LDC report of UNCTAD warns. By Carla September

* Reforming IMF and World Bank Conditionality: New realities and challenges may foster change
The new century started with streamlining initiatives from the IMF and the World Bank to their conditionality, but these have not managed to deliver real change. The arguments have not changed over the last years, and opponents have become firmly entrenched in their positions. The machinery, however, seem to be coming slowly to life after the impasse. New realities and challenges, such as climate change and rising prices, together with more traditional claims are reactivating the debate, Javier Pereira observes.

* The Spectre of Global Stagflation: A deadly cocktail
Inflation is already rising in many advanced economies and emerging markets. Will rising global inflation lead to a sharp global economic slowdown? Even worse, will it revive stagflation, that deadly combination of rising inflation and negative growth? US economist Nouriel Roubini analyzes the perspectives of the world economy and the danger of a global stagflation.

* A New Deal Against Spreading Economic Insecurity: UN calls for economic policy rethink
Recent optimism that the corner was being turned on poverty thanks to faster growth in emerging markets and even some very poor economies is turning to anxiety, as the global economy downshifts, prices spike and weaknesses in formal-sector employment are exposed. In advanced countries also, economic insecurity is associated with rising inequality, indebtedness and the squeezing of social provisioning, according to the new World Economic and Social Survey, published by the United Nations (see reference). WDEV summarises the report.

* The Political Declaration of the Group of 5 (G5): From O5 to G5 versus G8
For the first time at a G8 summit the group of five countries which are called Outreach-5 (O5) by the G8 (Brazil, China, India, Mexico and South Africa) held its own meeting prior to meeting with the G8 leaders. The G5 Political Declaration is providing substantial alternatives to the multiple crises of the world ? from finance to food security, from energy to climate and development. WDEV documents the full text.

WDEV 4/Jul-Aug 2008
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