SUNS #4610 Monday 21 February 2000
south-north development monitor SUNS [Email Edition]
Development: Globalization policies not working (Chakravarthi Raghavan, Bangkok)
Development: Many whys, and few why nots in globalization debates (Chakravarthi Raghavan, Bangkok)
Agriculture: Biotechnology panel highlights growing scepticism (IPS, Washington)
Argentina: Caught in the middle of the GMO debate (IPS, Buenos Aires)
Africa: Globalisation has backfired on continent (IPS, Bangkok)
Africa: Clinton urges Africa Trade Bill, debt relief (IPS, Washington)
DEVELOPMENT: GLOBALIZATION POLICIES NOT WORKING
Bangkok, 18 Feb (Chakravarthi Raghavan) -- As the tenth session of the UN Conference on Trade and Development was winding down its general discussions and the interactive debates, and negotiating some outstanding issues in the plan of action, one message coming out loud and clear from the speeches and interactive debates was that globalization policies are not working.
There have been repeated incantations about inevitability of globalization and something that can't be stopped. But there have also been voices (as from the ILO Director-General Juan Somavia) differentiating between the advances in technology and information, revolutionary changes that can't be reversed or stopped and globalization as a process that can be influenced and directed and changed by governments.
DEVELOPMENT: MANY WHYS, AND FEW WHY NOTS IN GLOBALIZATION DEBATES
Bangkok, 18 Feb (Chakravarthi Raghavan) -- If the general debate and the interactive debates at UNCTAD-X, with a total of about 180 speeches and interventions were to be characterized in any way, it is one of many voices of 'why' and a few 'why-nots' - why not change the systems and rules?
And perhaps remarkable were the views from such past ardent advocates and exponents of the liberal order and free trade, like Singapore President Goh Chok Tong, who on the opening day said a new framework was urgently needed - a new global order to sustain a global consensus on open markets and to moderate its worst excesses. Without such a framework, the international consensus on an open-trading system would be eroded by the pressures and dislocations of the relentless market.