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2008: The Risk of a Global Economic Recession
The world economy faces serious challenges in sustaining the strong economic growth of the last few years, the UN says in its report, World Economic Situation and Prospects 2008. There is a clear and present danger of the world economy coming to a near standstill.
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WDEV Highlights of 2007
The 12 articles that attracted most interest on www.wdev.eu during 2007, the stories most read or having triggered an interesting debate or just positive feedback. Festive greetings and a happy New Year to all our readers!
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Climate Change: More Action after Bali Talks
The Bali Climate Change Conference concluded successfully one day late on Saturday afternoon (15 December) after a dramatic day of events that at times saw tempers rising openly. A deal could be accomplished only after the United States gave in.
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Alternative Economists for Another Europe
Later this week the European Union reform treaty is to be signed in Lisbon. According to official statements, this will be the highlight in a year of economic and political progress. A just published memorandum by more than 350 progressive European economists gives a fundamentally different view. WDEV documents the summary of the Memorandum.
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The Greenhouse Development Rights Framework
An emergency climate program is needed, yet such a program is only possible if the international climate policy impasse is broken, and this impasse arises from the inherent - but surmountable - conflict between the climate crisis and the development crisis. To that end, the Greenhouse Development Rights (GDRs) framework is designed.
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HDR: Climate Change: Rich Nations' Responsibility
The new Human Development Report will point to rich nations' responsibility in fighting climate change this week. The climate crisis will usher in large-scale, irreversible changes in human development, unless decisive action will emerge from Bali, says Kevin Watkins, lead author of the report, titled "Fighting Climate Change: Human Solidarity in a Divided World".
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Lisbon EU-Africa Summit: The Day after …
Will the Lisbon Summit (to be held on 8-9 December) and the new Africa-EU joint Strategy bring substantial change in the way both partners handle their relationship? It is useful at this stage to start looking beyond the Summit and to raise a small selection of issues that amongst others will deserve attention in 2008.
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Trade Unions and Globalisation: Enlarging Agendas
Improved alliance-building, international collaboration and the promotion of the adoption of international labour standards are strategies the trade union movement has developed against the backdrop of globalisation. A new book examines some of the crucial issues facing the trade union movement.
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Agro-Fuels and Social Movements in Brazil
A heated international debate has been triggered by fuels derived from plants. Brazil plays an important role in this discussion. The social movements of landless, agricultural workers and small farmers have now intensified their efforts to initiate a dialogue about the conflict-charged future of agro-fuels.
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The Global Establishment and Global Inequality
There is no doubt: The way established economists and commentators talk about global economic inequality underwent a remarkable change. Even in traditionally orthodox circles there is a growing sense of urgency including calls for action. The debate on globalisation shows a very similar tendency which comes as no surprise since inequality and globalisation are two sides of the same coin.
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Who's Afraid of the Falling Dollar?
What do policy-makers in China, Japan, Argentina, Malaysia, Indonesia, the European Union and many other countries understand that ours don't? It seems they know that if the value of their currencies rises too much, it can hurt their economy. But for a number of reasons it hasn't quite sunk in here.
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Will Strauss-Kahn Lead the IMF Out of Crisis?
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) should no longer act as “gendarme” of the world economy. It has to reform itself in order to restore its relevance and legitimacy. Wherever the new IMF Managing Director, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, currently speaks, the message is quite clear: here comes someone who wants to change the Fund.
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Hedge Funds May Jeopardize Workers' Savings
Individual and government investment of pension programme money in hedge funds could jeopardize workers' retirement savings and future well-being as senior citizens, warns the 2007 Social Watch Report launched in New York in the context of the United Nations High-level Dialogue on Financing for Development.
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Argentina's Comeback has Lessons for Poor World
A few years ago, Argentina suffered rampant unemployment and widespread poverty, but prudent macroeconomic policies have allowed the country to stage a remarkable comeback. The economic medicine prescribed by its leaders mostly counteracted the policies preferred by the IMF, a fact with some important implications for other developing countries.
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The Latest Global Financial Crisis
Almost exactly ten years after the Asian crisis, the world is again confronted with a veritable financial crisis. This time the harbingers arise on the other side - the USA rather than East Asia. Today it is the fallout of the real estate crisis in the USA which threatens the financial markets.
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New Global Exchange Rate Arrangements Needed
The world economic situation is more favourable for developing countries than at any time since the early 1970s. But a safe correction to the increasing imbalances would be much easier with more appropriate global exchange-rate arrangements, the just published Trade & Development Report of UNCTAD argues.
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Financial Resources and Policy Space in Africa
Making greater use of domestic resources can help African countries to achieve sustained and higher economic growth and over the long term will reduce overdependence on donor funding and on the rules that apply to it, according to the new Africa report by UNCTAD.
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Costa Rica Votes on 'Free Trade' Agreement (CAFTA)
No country has ever had a national referendum on a "free trade" agreement before. So Costa Rica - the region's richest and most democratic country - will be setting a precedent on this Sunday (7 Oct 2007) with its referendum on CAFTA.
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Vital Signs: World Record Levels of Consumption
The 44 trends tracked in Vital Signs illustrate the urgent need to check consumption of energy and other resources that are contributing to the climate crisis, starting with the largest polluter, the United States.
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What the G5 Expects from Dialogue with the G8
When the so-called Heiligendamm Process will be launched by the G8 next October the group of five emerging economies (Brazil, China, India, Mexico, and South Africa) will be well prepared. WDEV documents the text of the G5's joint position paper for the Heiligendamm Process in full length.
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Healthy Correction or Start of Deeper Turmoil?
Stock markets around the world experienced sharp falls since the end of last month. It could be just a short "correction", or a new phase of financial volatility. With the second week of wild ride and high volatility, it is best to prepare for more shocks and roller coasters ahead.
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