Topic: Global Financial and Economic Crisis

What can we learn from Chinese aid?

I’m at a two day EU conference ‘Development in times of crisis and Achieving the MDGs’ (snappy eh?). It’s in Madrid, but you wouldn’t know it. We’re in an airless, windowless room in an aircraft hangar of a conference centre miles out from the city. I was on a panel on the impact of the […]

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Me with the IMF at the Hanoi Hilton – please add photo caption

OK, the blog’s been pretty heavy going of late, so here’s some light relief, c/o the IMF, who have just sent me multiple copies of this pic from a conference back in March on the impact of the global economic crisis in low income countries (see my previous post, or the IMF page on the […]

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The IMF pronounces on the Robin Hood Tax

Yesterday, I discussed the IMF’s fascinating new proposals for two international taxes on the financial sector  – a ‘financial stability contribution’ (FSC) and a ‘financial activities tax’ (FAT). But the leaked interim report to the G20 also discussed the financial transactions tax (FTT), better known as the Robin Hood Tax. What did it say? First […]

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A global taxation system, as proposed by the IMF

IMF suggests Global taxes on all banks History is made What have they put in the water supply at the IMF? First they see the light on capital controls, and now they’re putting out ground-breaking ideas on the international taxation of banks. I’ve been reading the supposedly confidential (but available on the BBC website – […]

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The World According to Robert Zoellick

World Bank President Robert Zoellick always gives a big set piece speech ahead of the IMF/World Bank spring meeting. Yesterday at the Woodrow Wilson Center he spoke on ‘the End of the Third World’. Highlights (and comments from me in brackets): ‘2009 saw the end of what was known as the “Third World”: We are […]

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The gender impact of Europe’s recession

A recent report by Oxfam’s UK Poverty Programme looks at the impact of the global economic crisis on Europe’s women. Based on research in ten EU member states, the report finds (among other things): ‘The impact of the recession is significant and damaging for both men and women living in poverty. This report tracks the […]

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Whatever happened to Robin Hood? Update on the Financial Transaction Tax

  From deep inside the boilerhouse of the Robin Hood Tax campaign, this helpful update comes from Max Lawson, Oxfam’s man in the green mask….. The weeks up to the G20 Finance Ministers meeting in Washington DC on 23 April (on the margins of the IMF and World Bank Spring Meetings) and the UK election […]

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What makes Vietnam's informal economy tick?

Inside Vietnam’s informal economy – heroic struggles! Spent Wednesday talking to a range of people in the ‘informal economy’ of Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon). I was accompanying our excellent Vietnam team, who together with Action Aid Vietnam, are running a 5-year ‘poverty monitoring programme’ in 9 rural and 3 urban sites, including this […]

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The IMF debates the crisis and industrial policy

The Hanoi Hilton, IMF, Robert Wade and jet lag. One strange day. [any feedback on these wonku summaries, introduced in response to the reader survey?] My week in Vietnam kicks off with a weird jet-lagged day at the Hanoi Hilton c/o the IMF and the Vietnam State Bank, who organized a conference on ‘Post Crisis […]

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How do you help people cope with shocks? A liquid brainstorm with Robert Chambers

At an IDS seminar last week, part of its excellent Crisis Watch initiative, Steve Wiggins from ODI argued that his research on the food price crisis shows that during an actual shock, state initiatives are much less important to poor people than their own social coping mechanisms as individuals, communities or through local institutions like […]

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Will this time be different? Financial crises and aid collapses over the last 30 years.

What impact do financial crises in rich countries have on their aid budgets? You would probably expect them to lead to a big bank bailout, producing a debt burden and a fiscal hangover, triggering bouts of cabinet infighting over public spending with aid coming off worst (after all, aid beneficiaries aren’t voters, at least in […]

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Some big development brains ask 'what's next?'

The Institute for Development Studies is a Good Thing. Located on the brutal 60s campus of the University of Sussex near Brighton, its gurus like Robert Chambers and Hans Singer have educated and inspired generations of Masters and PhD students, who then scattered to every corner of the aid industry and beyond (diplomats, politicians etc). […]

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