Hunger sweeps Southern Africa Rachel L. Swarns

In February, when the food ran out, Ezlina Chambukira started selling her precious possessions one by one. First, her goat. Then an old umbrella. Then two metal plates and a battered pail. When she had nothing left, she started praying for a miracle. For the first time in a decade, severe hunger is sweeping across southern Africa. The United Nations says that two years of erratic weather — alternating droughts and floods — coupled with mismanagement of food supplies have left seven million people in six countries at risk of starvation. Here in this dusty village of mud huts and…

Macroeconomic Policy, Growth and Poverty Reduction Terry McKinley

Many of the issues raised by heterodox economists are now being assimilated into a new “Post-Washington consensus”. The challenge is to construct a policy package that achieves the optimal impact in terms of reducing poverty. macroeconomic_policy (Download the full text in PDF format) (This is the introduction by Terry McKinley to the edited volume Macroeconomic Policy, Growth and Poverty Reduction, published by Palgrave, New York)

While People Die due to Poor Sanitation, OECD Forces Privatisation

A recent report by a British relief and development agency brings out the plight of 2.4 billion people worldwide, almost all of them in Asia, Africa and Latin America, who suffer from poor sanitation and lack of clean drinking water. More than two million children die every year of diarrhoea and people suffering from water-borne diseases occupy half of the world's hospital beds, says the British Charity 'Water Aid and Tearfund’ in a report titled, The Human Waste. Rapid urbanisation is worsening the crisis. The Bangladesh capital Dhaka has seen its population grow from 250,000 in the early 1970s to…

China: Can more reform break the stalemate? C.P. Chandrasekhar

After Japan and South Korea, China is arguably Asia's next giant. Starting from a relatively egalitarian base, in terms of asset and income distribution, created during the years of central planning, it has over the last two-and-a-half decades grown at a remarkable pace within the framework of an increasingly market-friendly regime. Per capita income has increased more than four-fold from $168 in 1980 at 1995 prices to $727 in 1998. Growth over time was indeed uneven with the annualised rate of growth of three-year-average GDP figures rising from a little less than 7 per cent in 1982 to a peak…

Economic Growth, Poverty and Income Distribution in Brazil Carlos Aguiar de Medeiros

(Paper prepared for the Conference "New Ideas on Development Economics Growth and Distribution Under Financial Globalization". Rio de Janeiro, January, 28 and 29, 2002) What distinguishes Brazilian society today is not only the poverty of 31% of its population – 54 million inhabitants in 2000 - but the extraordinary income gap between the very rich and the poor people . According to the World Bank Indicators for 2001, amongst 152 countries only 5 – Central African Republic, Nicaragua, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Swaziland – have an income Gini index higher than Brazil. This economic contrast in a medium income level…

Jubilee South Statement from Argentina

Defend Life The explosion of anger and hunger that has shaken our country is a long expected response from the depths of the degradation and betrayal that the people have been suffering. We join in that mobilization and share the pain, the anguish, and the indignation, in the face of so much unjustifiable repression and death. Dialogue 2000 demands the immediate halting of police repression and the repeal of the illegal state of siege. We call for the liberation and dropping of charges against all those detained for their participation in acts of social protest. We reject all forms of…