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World Economic Survey 1991

Current Trends and Policies in the World Economy

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1990 was an extraordinary years of shocks and contrasts for the world economy: the Gulf conflict, a sharp increase in energy prices, and a sudden erosion of consumer and business confidence in much of the world. Some developed economies went into recession and others nearly did. Many developing economies continued to languish under the burden of problem that persisted over most of the last decade.

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Preface

1990 was an extraordinary year of shocks and contrasts for the world economy. The Gulf conflict — apart from immense human suffering — brought about destruction of infrastructure and environmental pollution; a sharp increase in energy prices; intensified economic difficulties for many countries; and a sudden erosion of consumer and business confidence in much of the world. The dramatic developments in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union ushered in an era of transition from the command economy to the market system — a change that holds great potential for the world economy but has proved far more difficult than expected, and has resulted in a sharp fall in the output of these economies. Some developed economies went into recession and others nearly did, ending their longest expansion in the post-Second World War period. Many developing economies continued to languish under the burden of problems that have persisted over most of the last decade.

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