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Trips and public health: solutions for ensuring global access to essential AIDS medication in the wake of the Paragraph 6 Waiver.
Journal of Contemporary Health Law and Policy. 2008 Fall; 25(1):142-65.In 2003, the World Trade Organization (WTO) proposed a waiver to the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), known as the "Paragraph 6 Waiver," in order to create flexibility for developing countries and to allow easier importation of cheap generic medication. ... To the companies who own pharmaceutical patents, the notion that a government can use their product without the permission of the patent holder seems unfair and counterproductive. ... Canada was one of the first countries to enact legislation for the sole purpose of exporting generic drugs to developing countries and its experience is indicative of the problems presented by compulsory licensing and the Paragraph 6 Waiver. ... Exact amounts and methods for determining remuneration vary but presumably a fair system would compensate patent holders for the loss of their patent rights while maintaining the system's cost effectiveness for countries issuing the compulsory licenses. (excerpt)
Toronto, Canada, Association for Women's Rights in Development [AWID], 2002 Aug. 8 p. (Women’s Rights and Economic Change No. 4; Facts and Issues)The trade policies of national governments and the activities of the World Trade Organization (”WTO“) have important ramifications for economic and social development throughout the world. This primer describes the WTO and the relationship between trade policies and gender, and concludes with an agenda for action. The WTO is an international organization based in Geneva that was established in 1995. It was formed to oversee the series of trade agreements that had emerged from the “Uruguay Round” of negotiations on an international trade agreement called the General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs (“GATT”) and to implement a dispute settlement process regarding members’ rights and obligations under these agreements. As of January 2002, 144 countries are WTO members. Government representatives of these countries steer the activities of the organization. (excerpt)
Toronto, Canada, Association for Women's Rights in Development [AWID], 2002 Oct. 8 p. (Women’s Rights and Economic Change No. 5; Facts and Issues)Originally established in 1944, the Bank is the world’s largest supplier of development capital and know-how, having provided more than US $17 billion in loans to its client countries in 2001. It is headquartered in Washington, D.C., U.S.A., and it has 100 country offices, in total employing approximately 10,000 staff. At its core, the World Bank is engaged in three activities: lending, development research and economic analysis, and technical assistance. It provides funding from public sources for development programs in areas such as health, education and environmental protection, focusing on national legal, political and economic structures. The Bank promotes reforms designed to create long-term economic growth and stability, lending to governments and using the profits generated from the loans to finance its operations. It has recently promised to allocate more of its future financing to the poorest countries in grants (not loans) for social programs. (excerpt)
Toronto, Canada, Association for Women's Rights in Development [AWID], 2003 Dec. 8 p. (Women’s Rights and Economic Change No. 6; Facts and Issues)Every day and in almost every aspect of life, gender equality and women’s rights are affected by economic policy. Choices and opportunities regarding education, health care, employment, and childcare, for example, are all directly impacted by national economic agendas and international financial forces. Women therefore have a lot to lose when economic policies do not take gender discrimination and gender roles into account. At the same time, women’s rights can be advanced through economic policies that put their concerns, needs, and livelihoods at the centre of the analysis. Neoliberal globalization, which is the dominant driving force for economic policies throughout the world today, is therefore a crucial focus of gender equality advocates. (excerpt)
Blocking progress. How the fight against HIV / AIDS is being undermined by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
Washington, D.C., ActionAid International USA, 2004 Sep. 26 p.This briefing explores the logic of International Monetary Fund (IMF) loan conditions to developing countries and why the IMF insists that keeping inflation low is more important than increasing public spending to fight HIV/AIDS in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and Eastern Europe. In 2003, funding levels for HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment are estimated to have reached almost $5 billion; meanwhile financing needs will rise to $12 billion in 2005 and $20 billion by 2007. But if these large increases in foreign aid become available, will low-income countries be able to accept them? Despite the fact that the global community stands ready to significantly scale-up levels of foreign aid to help poorer countries finance greater public spending to fight HIV/AIDS, many countries may be deterred from doing so due to either direct or indirect pressure from the IMF. The IMF fears that increased public spending will lead to higher rates of inflation, but there is an open question in the economics profession about how high is too high, and what is an appropriate level of inflation. Despite this being an open question among economists, the IMF has taken an extremist position that lacks adequate justification. Such a position seriously undermines the best efforts of the global community to meaningfully address the HIV/AIDS epidemic and other health issues such as tuberculosis (TB) and malaria. (excerpt)
Micro-finance in rural communities in Southern Africa. Country and pilot site case studies, policy issues and recommendations.
Pretoria, South Africa, Human Sciences Research Council, 2002. , 170 p.While micro-finance in its various forms has helped to make loan capital more accessible to low-income rural communities, much remains to be done to increase its outreach, impact and sustainability. The essential objective of this study is to make well-researched recommendations for IRDP policy and strategy to enable the micro-finance agents that it will shortly be appointing to maximize improvements in these key indicators in the three pilot sites. Chapter 1 outlines the institutional context and terms of reference of the report and briefly discusses its timeframe, methodology, value and limitations. Chapters 2 and 3 depict, on the one hand, the demand for financial services in the three pilot sites and, on the other, access to micro-finance in the respective communities. In Chapter 4 an account is given of the essential nature and capabilities of microfinance, of recent developments in this regard, of fundamental lessons from international experience and of best practices in a rural context. Chapter 5 identifies the key sets of policy issues facing, in the first instance, public policy makers seeking to promote micro-finance development and, in the second, donors/investors/wholesalers seeking to support individual micro-finance retailers. It then applies the findings of Chapter 4 to the three on-the-ground pictures sketched out in Chapters 2 and 3 to arrive at some initial and very tentative recommendations for policy for the IRDP in the respective pilot sites. (excerpt)
Washington, D.C., ActionAid International USA, 2005 Mar.  p.How to get a square peg through a round hole? How can poor countries invest in the doctors, nurses, and teachers needed to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) when current International Monetary Fund (IMF) loan conditions limit the spending of recipient country governments? There is a fundamental contradiction between the need to greatly scale-up social spending to fight HIV/AIDS and what can actually be spent under the IMF’s current low-inflation monetary policy. How can significantly more money be spent in these economies without producing higher levels of inflation than the IMF’s low-inflation policy permits? In order for many poor countries to receive foreign aid from the World Bank or any of the rich countries, borrowing countries must first be given the “green light” by the IMF, an action that signals to other lenders that their national macroeconomic policies are sound. Because it opens the door to all the other major foreign aid donors and creditors, this “signaling effect” gives the IMF tremendous leverage over many aid-dependent countries in terms of the economic policy reforms it attaches as loan conditions. Unless a borrowing country is satisfactorily implementing the IMF’s preferred economic reform policies, it risks getting the “red light” – and being cut off from access to the major sources of foreign aid, credit, or debt relief programs. Of particular concern among the IMF’s binding loan conditions are economic policy reforms related to monetary policies (policies in which a central bank attempts to regulate the money supply and interest rates in order to control inflation and stabilize the currency). (excerpt)
In: Global health and governance. HIV / AIDS, edited by Nana K. Poku and Alan Whiteside. Basingstoke, England, Palgrave Macmillan, 2003 Dec. 109-122.Today in much of Africa economic growth has slowed and living standards for the majority have suffered in the face of rising unemployment and mass poverty, resulting in incomes that are presently below the 1970 level. One problem that has been the focus of much attention and contention over the past 20 years is the huge foreign debt owed by African countries to bilateral donors and multilateral institutions. Debt servicing is consuming a disproportionate amount of scarce resources at the expense of the provision of basic services to the poor. In order to receive help in servicing their debts, countries must agree to implement structural economic reforms. This often entails drastic cuts in social expenditures, the privatisation of basic services, and the liberalisation of domestic trade consistent with WTO rules. These policy decisions have had a direct impact on the capacity of African countries to promote, fulfill and protect the right to health of their citizens. This is further compounded by ill-conceived privatisation of basic services such as water and health services, without any regard for the ability of the poor to access these essential services at a cost they can afford. Finally, adherence to WTO trade rules, which often comes as an extension of liberalisation policy, hampers the capacity of African governments to produce or purchase less expensive generic drugs for their citizen without fear of retaliation from the developed countries. (author's)
AIDS WEEKLY. 1995 Jul 10; 8-10.International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank structural adjustment programs (SAPs) imposed on developing nations in the 1980s inadvertently helped set the stage for the AIDS epidemic. These programs continue to hinder efforts to prevent HIV transmission. SAPs resulted in the following phenomena which place populations at risk of HIV infection: increased rural-urban migration of cheap labor sparked by a shift to an export-oriented economy, the development of transportation infrastructures in the 1980s to support the changed economy, increased migration and urbanization, and reduced government spending upon health and social services necessitated by the SAPs. For HIV transmission in developing countries to be substantially reduced, the SAP economic policies which may have promoted disease must be modified. An alternative development strategy must satisfy basic human needs such as food, housing, and transport; shift emphasis from the production of a small number of primary commodities for export to diversified agricultural production; support marginal producers and subsistence farmers; emphasize human resource development; end the top-down approach favored by the IMF and World Bank in favor of a truly cooperative development policy; alter the charters of the IMF and World Bank to permit the cancellation or restructuring of debt; and require AIDS Impact Reports of the IMF and World Bank.
In: Health and disease in developing countries, edited by Kari S. Lankinen, Staffan Bergstrom, P. Helena Makela, Miikka Peltomaa. London, England, Macmillan Press, 1994. 13-8.In the 1980s average incomes in most African and many Latin American countries dropped by 10-25% partly because of their external debt and structural adjustment programs imposed by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. In 1990 the gap in living standards was nearly 30-fold between industrial countries and developing countries, whereas 20 years earlier this gap was only 11-fold. The political independence of formerly colonial countries was not matched by the reform of economic and social structures, and the structure of foreign trade is almost as one-sided as during the colonial period. Basic raw materials still make up nearly 70% of their exports, which are largely controlled by multinational corporations. During 1980-88 developing countries had a cumulative loss of 93 billion dollars as a result of declining terms of foreign trade as commodity prices fluctuated widely and settled at their lowest level since the Great Depression. Balance-of-payment and debt problems have further exacerbated this situation. The external debt of developing countries overtook the 500 billion dollar mark in 1979, it grew to over 1000 billion by 1987, and in 1993 it was around 1500 billion. In many African countries lack of foreign exchange earnings has led to cuts in imports and capacity utilization dropped to 30%. Debt cancellation has been partly implemented by creditors along with debt swaps for equity investments. Structural adjustment programs aimed at reforming inefficient administration, increasing exports, and reforming institutions have instead contracted the money supply, frozen wages, and cut public expenditures, causing the reduction in imports and overall output and employment. The effects of macroeconomic stabilization programs upon poverty have greatly alarmed UNICEF and the International Labor Organization because of severe deterioration of child health, education, and nutrition. In consequence, the IMF and the World Bank have urged African governments to take into account the needs of the poorest section of the population when implementing adjustment programs.
In: All of us. Births and a better life: population, development and environment in a globalized world. Selections from the pages of the Earth Times, edited by Jack Freeman and Pranay Gupte. New York, New York, Earth Times Books, 1999. 278-80.The 1944 Bretton Woods agreement, which set up the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund to launch reconstruction after World War II and fight off any renewal of the Great Depression, has achieved its purpose. The world's economy has multiplied, and international exchanges have reached an unimagined level, beyond the capacity of any government to manage. However, that very success and the technology of financial transactions have brought new problems. There are calls for a new international architecture, a new Bretton Woods to take account of what has changed and draw up new rules and procedures to accommodate changes. Nevertheless, several arguments opposing the change in financial architecture have been made, including the case that governments should have no mandate to interfere in the market. To reduce this dilemma, a conference needs to be held to study and discuss the possibilities.
Bulletin of the World Health Organization. 2006 May; 84(5):337-424.Developing countries are failing to make full use of flexibilities built into the World Trade Organization's (WTO) Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) to overcome patent barriers and, in turn, allow them to acquire the medicines they need for high priority diseases, in particular, HIV/AIDS. First-line antiretroviral (ARV) drugs for HIV/AIDS have become more affordable and available in recent years, but for patients facing drug resistance and side-effects, second-line ARV drugs and other newer formulations are likely to remain prohibitively expensive and inaccessible in many countries. The problem is that many of these countries are not using all the tools at their disposal to overcome these barriers. Medicines protected by patents tend to be expensive, as pharmaceutical companies try to recoup their research and development (R&D) costs. When there is generic competition prices can be driven down dramatically. The TRIPS Agreement came into effect on 1 January 1995 setting out minimum standards for the protection of intellectual property, including patents on pharmaceuticals. Under that agreement, since 2005 new drugs may be subject to at least 20 years of patent protection in all, apart from in the least-developed countries and a few non-WTO Members, such as Somalia. Successful AIDS programmes, such as those in Brazil and Thailand, have only been possible because key pharmaceuticals were not patent protected and could be produced locally at much lower cost. For example, when the Brazilian Government began producing generic AIDS drugs in 2000, prices dropped. AIDS triple-combination therapy, which costs US$ 10 000 per patient per year in industrialized countries, can now be obtained from Indian generic drugs company, Cipla, for less than US$ 200 per year. This puts ARV treatment within reach of many more people. (excerpt)
Bulletin of the World Health Organization. 2006 May; 84(5):338.The context for this theme collection is the publication of the report of the Commission on Intellectual Property Rights, Innovation and Public Health. The report of the Commission -- instigated by WHO's World Health Assembly in 2003 -- was an attempt to gather all the stakeholders involved to analyse the relationship between intellectual property rights, innovation and public health, with a particular focus on the question of funding and incentive mechanisms for the creation of new medicines, vaccines and diagnostic tests, to tackle diseases disproportionately affecting developing countries. In reality, generating a common analysis in the face of the divergent perspectives of stakeholders, and indeed of the Commission, presented a challenge. As in many fields -- not least in public health -- the evidence base is insufficient and contested. Even when the evidence is reasonably clear, its significance, or the appropriate conclusions to be drawn from it, may be interpreted very differently according to the viewpoint of the observer. (excerpt)
Africa Renewal. 2006 Jul; 20(2):16.Workers in Burkina Faso are angry. Four times in 2005 and then again this May, the country's trade unions shut down economic activity through a series of national general strikes. Thousands marched in the streets of that West African nation to protest low salaries, high prices, lost jobs and inadequate social benefits. Very often, the strikers contrasted their living standards with those of the elites. At one march in Bobo-Dioulasso, the main commercial city, union leader Bakary Millogo decried the workers' "rampant pauperization" as opposed to the "scandalous and ostentatious" lifestyles of high government officials. Burkina, commented a columnist for the independent daily L'Observateur Paalga, is "running the risk of a social explosion of unpredictable consequences." The dangers are all the greater, he added, because endemic poverty exists alongside visible signs of wealth. "Some take a plane to get treated for hay fever," he wrote, "while others die because they can't afford malaria treatment." (excerpt)
[Crisis, economic policy reforms and employment in Yaounde] Crise, reformes des politiques economiques et emploi a Yaounde.
Paris, France, Centre Francais sur la Population et le Developpement [CEPED], 2001 Sep. 35 p. (Dossiers du CEPED No. 64)Cameroon has experienced economic recession since 1987, from which it is now only barely emerging. This paper examines the impact of the economic crisis and economic reforms implemented to improve the situation upon employment in Yaounde. Results are based upon the analysis of data drawn from a literature review of research upon the problem, conducted in Yaounde during November-December 1996, by CEPED and IFORD. The study explored labor market access, job losses, and unemployment. The economic crisis and subsequent corrective measures were found to have a disastrous impact upon employment in the city, restricting young people’s access to jobs, particularly in the public sector, and provoking numerous layoffs especially in the modern employment sector. The number of job layoffs increased throughout the implementation of stabilization and internal adjustment measures recommended by the World Bank and International Monetary Fund. These job losses and limited access to job markets increased unemployment levels among the city’s youth. Neither stabilization and adjustment measures, nor currency devaluation stimulated employment in Yaounde, a city in which available human resources are currently underutilized.
Is trade liberalization of services the best strategy to achieve health-related Millennium Development Goals in Latin America? A call for caution.
Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública / Pan American Journal of Public Health. 2006 Nov; 20(5):341-346.In September 2000, at the United Nations (UN) Millennium Summit, 147 heads of state adopted the Millennium Declaration, with the aim of reflecting their commitment to global development and poverty alleviation. This commitment was summarized in 8 goals, 14 targets, and 48 measurable indicators, which together comprise the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), to be attained by 2015. All of the MDGs contribute to public health, and three are directly health-related: MDGs 4 (reduce child mortality), 5 (improve maternal health), and 6 (combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases). Progress towards these goals has proved difficult. In an attempt to identify practical steps to achieve the MDGs, the UN Development Programme initiated the UN Millennium Project in 2002. This three-year "independent" advisory effort established 13 task forces to identify strategies and means of implementation to achieve each MDG target, and each task force produced a detailed report. A Task Force on Trade was created for MDG 8 to develop a global partnership for development. The mandate of the Task Force on Trade was to explore how the global trading system could be improved to support developing countries, with special attention to the needs of the poorest nations. (excerpt)
Washington, D.C., Africa Action, .  p.Debt is the greatest economic obstacle to African efforts to combat the HIV/AIDS crisis. Debt repayments rob $15 billion from the continent every year. This money could be used to provide health care to millions of people and to fund the war on HIV/AIDS. But it is instead being taken away by foreign governments and institutions. Africa's debts must be canceled to allow Africa's people to control their own resources and direct them towards their real priorities--combating poverty and the HIV/AIDS crisis. (excerpt)
Bulletin of the World Health Organization. 2007 Oct; 85(10):734.posited that the process of development entails changes in incomes over time. Larger income levels achieved via positive economic growth, appropriately discounted for population growth, would constitute higher levels of development. As many have noted, however, the income measure fails to adequately reflect development in that per-capita income, in terms of its levels or changes to it, does not sufficiently correlate with measures of (human) development, such as life expectancy, child/infant mortality and literacy. The United Nations Development Programme's (UNDP) human development index (HDI) constitutes an improved measure for development. HDI has been modified to be gender-sensitive with variants that reflect gender inequality. Various measures reflecting Sen's "capability" concept, such as civil and political rights, have also been incorporated. Countries where the level of poverty is relatively large tend also to exhibit low values of human development, thus lowering the mean values of the development measures. Where inequalities of development indicators are very large, however, the average values may not sufficiently reflect the conditions of the poor, requiring the need to concentrate on poverty per se. (excerpt)
New York, New York, UNFPA, 2002.  p.Almost all United Nations global conferences in the last decade have recognized that youth unemployment is a growing problem that needs to be addressed, and that placing youth at the centre of the development agenda is a key to sustainable development. Youth unemployment, especially among girls, is linked to problems of poverty, illhealth, illiteracy. Hence, preparing young people for productivity and healthy integration into their changing societies calls for attention to their economic, health and basic social needs. The ongoing and future demands created by large young populations, particularly in terms of health, education and employment, represent major challenges and responsibilities for families, local communities, countries and international community. To meet the special needs of adolescents and youth, especially young women, the challenge is to give due regard for their own creative capacities, and to provide social, family and community support, employment opportunities, participation in political processes, and access to education, health, counselling and high quality reproductive health services. Health, including sexual and reproductive health, is an important consideration in the employability of young people. At the same time, employment can improve young people’s access to health and other social services. Thus, securing their health and rights will enhance efforts to provide young people, especially girls and women with education, employment, and life skills that will benefit them as individuals, their families and society at large. (author's)
Bulletin of the World Health Organization. 2008 Jan; 86(1):13-19.Target 10 of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) is to "halve by 2015 the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation". Because of its impacts on a range of diseases, it is a health-related MDG target. This study presents cost estimates of attaining MDG target 10. We estimate the population to be covered to attain the MDG target using data on household use of improved water and sanitation for 1990 and 2004, and taking into account population growth. We assume this estimate is achieved in equal annual increments from the base year, 2005, until 2014. Costs per capita for investment and recurrent costs are applied. Country data is aggregated to 11 WHO developing country subregions and globally. Estimated spending required in developing countries on new coverage to meet the MDG target is US$ 42 billion for water and US$ 142 billion for sanitation, a combined annual equivalent of US$ 18 billion. The cost of maintaining existing services totals an additional US$ 322 billion for water supply and US $216 billion for sanitation, a combined annual equivalent of US$ 54 billion. Spending for new coverage is largely rural (64%), while for maintaining existing coverage it is largely urban (73%). Additional programme costs, incurred administratively outside the point of delivery of interventions, of between 10% and 30% are required for effective implementation. In assessing financing requirements, estimates of cost should include the operation, maintenance and replacement of existing coverage as well as new services and programme costs. Country-level costing studies are needed to guide sector financing. (author's)
Estimating the costs of achieving the WHO-UNICEF Global Immunization Vision and Strategy, 2006 -- 2015.
Bulletin of the World Health Organization. 2008 Jan; 86(1):27-39.The objective was to estimate the cost of scaling up childhood immunization services required to reach the WHO-UNICEF Global Immunization Vision and Strategy (GIVS) goal of reducing mortality due to vaccine-preventable diseases by two-thirds by 2015. A model was developed to estimate the total cost of reaching GIVS goals by 2015 in 117 low- and lower-middle-income countries. Current spending was estimated by analysing data from country planning documents, and scale-up costs were estimated using a bottom-up, ingredients-based approach. Financial costs were estimated by country and year for reaching 90% coverage with all existing vaccines; introducing a discrete set of new vaccines (rotavirus, conjugate pneumococcal, conjugate meningococcal A and Japanese encephalitis); and conducting immunization campaigns to protect at-risk populations against polio, tetanus, measles, yellow fever and meningococcal meningitis. The 72 poorest countries of the world spent US$ 2.5 (range: US$ 1.8-4.2) billion on immunization in 2005, an increase from US$ 1.1 (range: US$ 0.9-1.6) billion in 2000. By 2015 annual immunization costs will on average increase to about US$ 4.0 (range US$ 2.9-6.7) billion. Total immunization costs for 2006-2015 are estimated at US$ 35 (range US$ 13-40) billion; of this, US$ 16.2 billion are incremental costs, comprised of US$ 5.6 billion for system scale-up and US$ 8.7 billion for vaccines; US$ 19.3 billion is required to maintain immunization programmes at 2005 levels. In all 117 low- and lower-middle-income countries, total costs for 2006-2015 are estimated at US$ 76 (range: US$ 23-110) billion, with US$ 49 billion for maintaining current systems and $27 billion for scaling-up. In the 72 poorest countries, US$ 11-15 billion (30%-40%) of the overall resource needs are unmet if the GIVS goals are to be reached. The methods developed in this paper are approximate estimates with limitations, but provide a roadmap of financing gaps that need to be filled to scale up immunization by 2015. (author's)
[Washington, D.C.], World Bank, 2006 Sep.  p.This Action Plan seeks to advance women's economic empowerment in the World Bank Group's client countries in order to promote shared growth and accelerate the implementation of Millennium Development Goal 3 (MDG3 - promoting gender equality and women's empowerment). The Plan would commit the World Bank Group to intensify and scale up gender mainstreaming in the economic sectors over four years, in partnership with client countries, donors, and other development agencies. The Bank Group and its partners would increase resources devoted to gender issues in operations and technical assistance, in Results-Based Initiatives (RBIs), and in policy-relevant research and statistics. An assessment at the end of the four-year period would determine whether to extend the Action Plan's timeframe. (excerpt)
Global Public Health. 2008; 3(S2):92-104.The purpose of this paper is to present an analysis of how issues on sexuality are captured by the World Bank's economic rationality, producing a sanitised discourse which, through its silences, further contributes to a normalised view of sexuality. Given the Bank's authority to determine what kinds of health and development programmes are established in the developing world, it is in a unique position to influence approaches to issues of gender and sexuality. An analysis of the Bank's documents reveals, however, that rather than addressing these fundamental components of some of the most pressing health emergencies of our time, its economic rationality and technocratic viewpoint has effectively silenced and sanitised the discourse on sexuality, thereby limiting what sexuality and gender-related issues can be tackled in the context of Bank sponsored programmes, and constraining efforts to advance fundamental sexual rights. Nevertheless, unexpected and paradoxical results may arise from that process, which, thus, does not necessarily lead to the furthering of a comprehensive conservative agenda. (author's)
Towards a green economy: Pathways to sustainable development and poverty eradication. A synthesis for policy makers.
Nairobi, Kenya, UNEP, 2011.  p.We argue in UNEP's forthcoming Green Economy Report, and in this extracted Synthesis for Policy Makers, that the rewards of greening the world's economies are tangible and considerable, that the means are at hand for both governments and the private sector, and that the time to engage the challenge is now. In this report, we explored through a macroeconomic model the impacts of investments in greening the economy as against investments in "business as usual" -- measuring results not only in terms of traditional GDP but also impacts on employment, resource intensity, emissions and ecological impact. We estimated, based on several studies, that the annual financing demand to green the global economy was in the range of US$ 1.05-2.59 trillion. To place this demand in perspective, it is less than one-tenth of the total global investment per year (as measured by global Gross Capital Formation). Taking an annual level of US$ 1.3 trillion (i.e. 2% of global GDP) as a target reallocation from "brown" investment to "green" investment, our macroeconomic model suggests that over time, investing in a green economy enhances long-run economic performance and can increase total global wealth. Significantly, it does so while enhancing stocks of renewable resources, reducing environmental risks, and rebuilding our capacity to generate future prosperity. Our report, Towards a Green Economy, focuses on 10 key economic sectors because we see these sectors as driving the defining trends of the transition to a green economy, including increasing human well-being and social equity, and reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities. Across many of these sectors, we have found that greening the economy can generate consistent and positive outcomes for increased wealth, growth in economic output, decent employment, and reduced poverty. (Excerpts)
Promoting the Millennium Development Goals in Asia and the Pacific. Meeting the challenges of poverty reduction.
New York, New York, United Nations, 2003.  p. (ST/ESCAP/2253)In September 2000 at the Millennium Summit the Member States of the United Nations issued the Millennium Declaration, committing themselves to a series of targets, most of which are to be achieved by 2015. Known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), they represent a framework for achieving human development and broadening its benefits. This overview provides a summary of the ESCAP-UNDP report, Promoting the Millennium Development Goals in Asia and the Pacific: Meeting the Challenges of Poverty Reduction. It analyses the prospects, challenges and opportunities for attaining the MDGs in the countries of Asia and the Pacific. Individual countries are preparing their own national MDG reports. A report such as this can also offer a valuable regional perspective and a basis for further action. It can, for example, help the countries in the region increasingly to cooperate and to learn from each other. And it should also be of value to people outside the region who want to learn more about Asia and the Pacific and how the region has succeeded in swiftly reducing mass poverty and sustaining rapid economic growth and social change. The report emphasizes that the prime responsibility for achieving the MDGs lies with individual countries. Countries in the region should, however, also be able to count on regional and international partnerships, and they would certainly benefit from changes in the global system and the global economy. Nevertheless, their success will depend ultimately on national commitment and on the quality and thoughtfulness of national decisions. (excerpt)