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World Economic and Social Survey 2010

Retooling Global Development

image of World Economic and Social Survey 2010
The Survey points out promising directions for reform, including strengthening government capacities for formulating and implementing national development strategies; doing more to ensure that official development assistance is aligned with national priorities; strengthening the international trade and financial systems so that countries with limited capabilities can successfully integrate into the global economy; creating new mechanisms for dealing with deficiencies, such as specialized multilateral frameworks through which to govern international migration and labour mobility, international financial regulation, multinational corporations and global value chains regulation, as well as sovereign debt workouts. Most importantly, the Survey highlights the need for a strong mechanism for global economic coordination which establishes coherence across all areas of global economic governance.

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Introduction

As the world emerges from its worst recession since the Second World War, it is important to remind ourselves that interdependence across nations is an essential feature of economic development. Over the past few years, many have come to feel that interdependence is the carrier of economic distress. Skyrocketing food and energy prices have affected the livelihoods of many. The strong rise in food prices during 2007 and 2008 exposed not only the structural basis of food insecurity—the result of decades of underinvestment in agriculture, especially in developing countries—but also the interconnectedness of such insecurity with other global problems. The effects of climate change are already being felt in many parts of the world in the form of more frequent and intense droughts and excessive rainfall which have exacerbated food insecurity and intensified price volatility.

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