Some international finance institutions are putting pressure on President John Evans Atta Mills and his administration to ratify some agreements they entered with the erstwhile Kufuor-Administration.
This is being done even though the new government is yet to study the agreements.
Against this backdrop, Mr. Samuel Zan Akologo, Country Director of the Social Enterprise Foundation, Ghana Chapter (SEND-Ghana), has urged the government to proceed with caution.
According to him, “The speed with which our governments sometimes rush into agreements is worrying They will sign and sign away their birth rights.” Continue reading
Raza Rumi’s oped published in the NEWS (Pakistan)
The not-so-inevitable is about to happen. After weeks of groping in the darkness of global financial mess, the Pakistani government is negotiating with the International Monetary Fund. Admittedly, Pakistan’s options are limited, given its intractable dependence on oil imports for survival. The civilian government moving from one crisis to another has elevated indecision to a policy status. This does not imply that we start echoing the unwise cacophony of impatience with an elected and far more legitimate government than the eight-year-long authoritarian regime. But then who cares: if recent history is a guide, PPP governments come with a brand or at least get branded as incompetent comprising coteries of cronies, as if the rest of the country is a fair, rule-based haven.
The plain truth is that the power-wielders of Pakistan have been following a set of disastrous policies for decades that have now put the survival of the state, or as we knew it, in question. From the great hunts for strategic depth and Jihad, and from nurturing domestic oligarchies and pampering a delinquent industrial sector at the expense of land tillers and equitable irrigation, we are now paying the price for policy making by the elites for the sustenance of the elites. Continue reading
From the Daily Times, Pakistan
* Pakistan Economy Watch president says IMF policies ruined 68 economies worldwide
ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Economy Watch has said that the popularity of International Monetary Fund (IMF) has dwindled significantly and it should modify its policies to increase the level of acceptance.
The popularity of fund established in 1945 is at an all-time low. Lack of customers has put its own existence in jeopardy. It’s high time for international lenders and IMF to reconsider their policies often blamed for enhancing poverty and gap between rich and poor, said Dr Murtaza Mughal, President of the Pakistan Economy Watch. Continue reading
Dismay expressed over non-co-operation of IFIs
ISLAMABAD: Pakistani authorities have expressed serious concerns over the non-cooperation of International Financial Institutions (IFIs) with the newly elected government led by Pakistan Peoples Party.
International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) technical mission, which held its technical review meetings with different federal economic ministries, was accordingly informed by one of a senior official that non-cooperation of lending agencies with the new government would be harmful for the democracy. This behaviour will strengthen the general perception in Pakistan than IFIs do not cooperate with democratic governments and extend maximum financial help to the non-elected governments and dictators, official sources told daily Times on Wednesday. Continue reading
Filed under IFIs, Pakistan
‘Development As A Tool Of International Institutions
By Vasudha Dhingra
02 September, 2008
MURPHY, CRAIG, Global Institutions, Marginalisation and Development (New York: Routledge, 2005). Pp. xi + 191 + Index. Price not indicated.
Global institutions, marginalisation and development are terms that have dominated academic discussions and policy-level deliberations for quite some time now. As is well documented, the goal of achieving development by simultaneously integrating the marginalised sections of the society has remained a serious predicament of several developing and under-developed countries. The role of global institutions of governance in facilitating these two processes has remained crucial and contestable.
Murphy, in this book, has attempted to analyse these relatively recent themes, with otherwise blurred definitional identities, from distinct perspectives – such as developmentalist, feminist and Third World view – adding to the intellectual appeal of the book. The following themes find recurring mention in the book: world organisation and human needs; liberal institutionalism; social movements and liberal world orders; marginalised and the privileged, which expanse across questions of equality, justice and need in global political economy. One of the author’s emphatic depositions in the book is that inequality is the enemy of human development; it harms those at the bottom of hierarchy (p. 182). By asserting that inequality by itself contributes to the ill-health of the marginalised, Murphy, by implication, has tried to argue that economic equality is a precondition for realising other aspects of human development. Continue reading
The World Bank has released a new report on poverty. From the press release:
New data show 1.4 billion live on less than $1.25 a day, but progress against poverty remains strong
WASHINGTON, DC, August 26, 2008 – The World Bank said improved economic estimates showed there were more poor people around the world than previously thought while also revealing big successes in the fight to overcome extreme poverty.
The new estimates, which reflect improvements in internationally comparable price data, offer a much more accurate picture of the cost of living in developing countries and set a new poverty line of US$1.25 a day. They are based on the results of the 2005 International Comparison Program (ICP), released earlier this year. Continue reading
WB: August 26, 2008—New poverty estimates published by the World Bank reveal that 1.4 billion people in the developing world (one in four) were living on less than US$1.25 a day in 2005, down from 1.9 billion (one in two) in 1981.
The new numbers show that poverty has been more widespread across the developing world over the past 25 years than previously estimated, but also that there has been strong—if regionally uneven—progress toward reducing overall poverty.
Looking at the new estimates from the perspective of the Millennium Development Goals, a set of internationally agreed development targets, the developing world is still on track to halve extreme poverty from its 1990 levels by 2015. This is the first of eight critical goals. Continue reading