April 2013

Ending Extreme Poverty Hinges on Progress in Fragile and Conflict-affected Situations

The World Bank, 30 April, 2013
More than 1.5 billion people live in places affected by conflict and extreme violence, where governments can’t fully function, and progress in achieving basic human development outcomes is stalled. The poverty rate is typically high and economic growth low. They seriously lag the rest of the world in progress towards the Millennium Development Goals, and are in danger of being left further behind as other developing countries grow and become more integrated in the global economy.

Lamy calls for dialogue on trade and energy in the WTO

WTO News, 29 April, 2013
WTO Director-General Pascal Lamy, in a speech to the Workshop on the Role of Intergovernmental Agreements in Energy Policy organized by the Energy Charter Secretariat on 29 April 2013 at the WTO, said “what is sorely lacking in the current WTO context is a constructive and forward-looking discussion among members on the rapidly expanding trade and energy interface.” He added that “such discussion is a pre-requisite to build up the necessary consensus on the WTO’s future role in global energy governance.”

WTO pushing for a world growth agenda

WTO News, 22 April, 2013
WTO Director-General Pascal Lamy, in his speech to the World Bank Development Committee in Washington on 20 April 2013, said “the WTO has been at the forefront of pushing for a growth agenda, especially in the post-2015 period, and will continue to work towards securing a more central role for trade and economic growth as the process unfolds.” Noting that this was his final Development Committee meeting as WTO Director-General, he underlined the importance of WTO-World Bank collaboration, especially in Aid for Trade.

A Chance to Make History: Achieving a World Free of Poverty

Georgia Today, 19 April, 2013
In two weeks, economic policymakers from around the world will gather in Washington, D.C., for the World Bank-IMF Spring Meetings. There will be much talk of economic crisis and of strategies to restore confidence, kick start growth, and create jobs. There is growing evidence that we are on the right track, but this agenda still requires much more work.

World Development Indicators 2013 Released

The World Bank, 18 April, 2013
The 2013 edition of World Development Indicators (WDI) includes the latest available data on global development, poverty, the quality of people’s lives, the environment, the economy, the functioning of states and markets, and global links of finance, trade, and migration. As World Bank Group President Jim Young Kim highlighted, new estimates of extreme poverty show there were 1.2 billion people still living on less than $1.25 a day in 2010, a decrease of 100 million since 2008. The global rate of extreme poverty fell to 20.6 percent, less than half the 1990 rate of 43.1 percent. Thus the world as a whole has met the first Millennium Development Goal. But many individual countries have made slower progress and may fall short of the target. Progress toward other Millennium Development Goals is documented in a special 17 page introduction to the WDI.

India has one third of world’s poorest, says World Bank

The Telegraph, 18 April, 2013
One in three of the world’s poorest people are living in India, the world’s second-fastest growing economy, according to a new study by the World Bank. While new figures show that the number of those in extreme poverty around the world – surviving on 82 pence per day or less – has declined significantly, India now has a greater share of the world’s poorest than it did thirty years ago. Then it was home to one fifth of the world’s poorest people, but today it accounts for one-third – 400 million.

Lamy says Europe needs a good compass to sail through crisis

WTO News, 17 April, 2013
WTO Director-General Pascal Lamy, in a speech to the Institute of International and European Affairs in Dublin, Ireland on 17 April 2013, said that “the best way to sail through the crisis is to use a good compass – the name of the European compass must be ‘confidence’. Confidence that Europe has the strength to sail in an ever more globalized world”.

Trade to remain subdued in 2013 after sluggish growth in 2012 as European economies continue to struggle

WTO News, 10 April, 2013
World trade growth fell to 2.0% in 2012 – down from 5.2% in 2011 – and is expected to remain sluggish in 2013 at around 3.3% as the economic slowdown in Europe continues to suppress global import demand, WTO economists reported on 10 April 2013. “The events of 2012 should serve as a reminder that the structural flaws in economies that were revealed by the economic crisis have not been fully addressed, despite important progress in some areas. Repairing these fissures needs to be the priority for 2013,” Director-General Pascal Lamy said.