[OPE-L] More from the World Bank

From: Jurriaan Bendien (adsl675281@TISCALI.NL)
Date: Sat Dec 16 2006 - 07:16:53 EST

Growth Prospects Are Strong, but Social, Environmental Pressures from
Globalization Need More Attention

Press Release No:2007/159/DEC

WASHINGTON, DC, December 13, 2006 - Globalization could spur faster growth
in average incomes in the next 25 years than during 1980-2005, with
developing countries playing a central role. However, unless managed
carefully, it could be accompanied by growing income inequality and
potentially severe environmental pressures, predicts the World Bank.

According to Global Economic Prospects 2007: Managing the Next Wave of
Globalization, growth in developing countries will reach a near record 7
percent this year. In 2007 and 2008, growth will probably slow, but still
likely exceed 6 percent, more than twice the rate in high-income countries,
which is expected to be 2.6 percent. (...)

Global trade in goods and services could rise more than threefold to $27
trillion in 2030, and trade as a share of the global economy will rise from
one-quarter today to more than one-third. Roughly half of the increase is
likely to come from developing countries. Developing countries that only two
decades ago provided 14 percent of manufactured imports of rich countries,
today supply 40 percent, and by 2030 are likely to supply over 65 percent.
At the same time, import demand from developing countries is emerging as a
locomotive of the global economy. (...)

Globalization is likely to bring benefits to many. By 2030, 1.2 billion
people in developing countries - 15 percent of the world population - will
belong to the "global middle class," up from 400 million today. This group
will have a purchasing power of between $4,000 and $17,000 per capita, and
will enjoy access to international travel, purchase automobiles and other
advanced consumer durables, attain international levels of education, and
play a major role in shaping policies and institutions in their own
countries and the world economy.

The next wave of globalization will likely intensify stresses on the "global
commons," which could jeopardize long-term progress, the report warns.
Nations will have to work together to play a larger role in issues involving
global public goods - from mitigating global warming, to containing
infectious diseases like avian flu, to preventing the decimation of the
world's fisheries. According to the report, global warming is a serious
risk. (...)

Internationally, the report calls for stronger institutions for tackling
threats to the global commons. It also calls for more and better development
assistance. Reducing barriers to trade is vital as well, since it can create
new opportunities for poor countries and poor people. "Revitalizing the Doha
round of world trade negotiations and concluding an agreement that benefits
the poor is urgent," said Mr. Dadush.


It's interesting how the concept of a "global commons" has crept back into
the discussion - except it is only defined in terms of such things as the
weather, the air we breathe, bacteria and viruses, and fish in the open sea.

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