Topic: Trade

Possible Fragments of the Post-Covid World Order, according to The Economist

This week’s Economist Special Report on the World Economy is a thought-provoking and beautifully written helicopter overview of the current meltdown. Some extracts: ‘Conditions before the pandemic were forged by the three biggest economic shocks of the 21st century: the integration of China into the world trading system, the financial crisis and the rise of […]

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Why are Illegal Drugs still a Cinderella Issue in Development? (Looking at you CGD!)

Why don’t more mainstream aid organizations work on the issue of illegal drugs like cannabis, coca or opium poppy? We’ve known for decades that the prevalent approach to these – prohibition – harms small-scale farmers that grow them, fuels violence, undermines the rule of law and contaminates politics (the UN estimates the illegal drugs trade […]

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Will Patents stop Covid drugs from saving lives?

Guest post by Ken Shadlen of the LSE The Covid-19 pandemic has sparked a global race of public- and private-led research to develop vaccines and treatments. Will patents hinder access to the products it generates? My summary? With regard to treatments (the dynamics around vaccines may differ), access problems will mainly affect middle-income countries. While […]

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Singapore: the politics of taking sand to make land

Madhumitha Ardhanari is a 2019-20 Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity at the International Inequalities Institute, London School of Economics. She has worked as a sustainability strategist and futures researcher at Forum for the Future, and has five years of experience coaching businesses and organisations to adapt to long-term sustainability challenges. Until six months […]

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What values should guide Britain’s role in the world, post-Brexit?

Oxfam today publishes (with UK think tank, the Foreign Policy Centre) a collection of essays from parliamentarians and policy experts called ‘Finding Britain’s role in a changing world: building a values based foreign policy’. Here are a few highlights from the conclusion, snappily written by Adam Hug, Abigael Baldoumas, Katy Chakrabortty and Danny Sriskandarajah: ‘The […]

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Patent rules are still stopping us helping our children, and this time it’s personal

I arrived at Oxfam towards the end of its big Make Trade Fair campaign on global trade rules. One of its core figures was Romain Benicchio, who just got in touch with this piece about how one aspect of that campaign has become all-too personal. One of the major illustrations of the rigged rules and […]

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Is Africa facing its second debt crisis? What are the solutions?

Guest post from Jaime Atienza of Oxfam Intermon Here we go again. Though different to their “first debt crisis”, which was incubated in the 80s, hit in the 90s and was resolved (partly) in the 2000s, the situation is again profoundly uphill for a growing number of African countries: in 2019 their debt repayments as […]

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A New Scramble for Africa?

Not a single one of my LSE students reads the Economist. That may be down to the selection bias of people wanting to take my course on activism, but I think they’re missing out. If, like me, you’re liberal on social issues, sceptical on economic laissez faire, and just plain confused on politics, then at […]

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How Does Fair Trade go from inspiring examples to Transforming Capitalism?

Erinch Sahan, an exfamer who now heads the World Fair Trade Organization network, wants to pick your brains about how to transform capitalism I think I’m sitting on a goldmine of examples that could help efforts to transform business and economies. I lead a global community of 330 real examples of alternative business models. These […]

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Africa in 2019: 7 trends to watch, by Apollos Nwafor

I get lots of internal Oxfam emails. Some of them I even read. Here’s a particularly useful 2019 curtain raiser from Apollos Nwafor, our Pan African Director: ‘There are several issues that put Africa in focus this year: Reform at the African Union: The reforms agreed by the heads of state at the extraordinary meeting […]

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How can the UN become a Thought Leader again?

When was the last time you read anything from UNCTAD? Back in the day (say, early 2000s), its annual Trade and Development Report (TDR) was one of the big annual milestones (along with the World Development Report, Human Development Report etc). They were essential reading for any policy wonk. They’re all still being published, but […]

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Legal earthquakes and the struggle against Mining in Mexico

Second post from a great visit to Mexico last week to launch the Spanish language edition of How Change Happens. Few things get development folk fired up as much as mining. For many NGOs and grassroots organizations, not much has changed since the Conquistadores: mining is plunder. Given their long history in terms of pollution, […]

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