The World Bank has launched a global insurance fund aimed aimed at speeding up the international community’s response to pandemic disease outbreaks. The impetus for the innovative financial scheme was the 2013-2016 West Ebola outbreak that, due in part to the global community’s slow response, killed more than 11,000 people and ended up costing more than $10 billion to put down.
Paraguay had been making progress against poverty over the years, but the government has reported a recent rise in poverty that some say stems from an inadequate focus on agricultural communities. Despite the country’s overall economic growth last year, the total poverty rate rose from 26.6 to 28.8 percent.
The amount of money that migrants around the world send back home increased by more than 50 percent over the past decade, according to a new analysis. Technically known as ‘remittances,’ the total amount of these cash transfers grew from $296 billion dollars in 2007 to $445 billion in 2016 – triple what is spent by rich countries on foreign aid each year.
Japan may be more ready than ever to join the new China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and, according to a senior official of Japan’s ruling party, must make a decision soon.
People from developing countries who work internationally are sending less money home. It is the second consecutive year remittances dropped, making it the first significant decline in three decades. The trend is concerning, the World Bank said upon releasing the new remittance figures.
The world is in crisis, a loss of confidence in institutions or humanitarian values once thought widely shared that has confused those who want to emphasize global progress against poverty and inequity. As one of the thousand or so attendees at the Skoll World Forum in lovely old Oxford last week, I went as a journalist hoping to gain some reassurance that the emphasis on progress was justified – that there was consensus on the cause of this turmoil, and on the best strategies for moving forward out of crisis.
With the exception of sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean spends less on infrastructure than any other world region. According to a World Bank report, however, the region should not spend more to boost development – it just needs to spend more wisely.
Honduras is notoriously the most deadly country for land rights activists, including the farmers fighting to retain their land from the palm oil industry. Now, some of those farmers have sued a branch of the World Bank over hundreds of human rights violations.
Latin American countries must employ proven violence prevention policies if the region is going to adequately address crime and violence, according to a new World Bank report presented this week.
Here’s some good news from 2016: Costa Rica is still steadily reducing its poverty rate, bolstering its economy and its reputation as one of the best development success stories in Latin America.