Friday, October 26, 2007

Briefs and such: World Bank (again), money poor, resource rich, environmental issues

To increase credibility and legitimacy in Africa, the Caucus of African Central Bank Governors challenged the World Bank and International Monetary Fund to give them more representation and voting rights.

The increased representation would not only ensure fair representation, but augment the decision making processes at the two financial institutions.

"We are concerned about the continued erosion of the voice and representation of African in the Bretton Woods Institutions," the group said in a statement.

Africa isn’t poor. It’s people are poor, writes Malawian President Bingu Wa Mutharika. Africa is a continent bountiful in all sorts of resources. One of the issues keeping Africa buckled under the global economy is the fact that African countries rarely process their resources. Instead, gold, natural gas, cotton is all shipped to rich countries where they can be processed and profited on.

Africa may be on the right path to better economic development, but its environment will continually be under pressure, said a new report from the UN Environment Program. Higher development means more waste and resources going to supply a growing African population.

For proof, the report offered the myriad of natural disasters affecting the continent: floods, droughts and coastal erosion.

These issues have affected land use, where per capita food production is 12 percent less than it was in 1981.

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