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Economy

China: science goes to the marketplace

Issue Date: Aug 15, 1995
CHINA'S 700-page white paper on scientific research, presented at the recent National Science and Technology Conference in Beijing, calls for the commercialisation of research results, according primacy to marketable advancements. It is a pertinent effort, in tune with the ongoing technological revolution in the world and the upgrading of outdated institutions.

IVORY COAST

Issue Date: Jul 15, 1995
Foreign and national investors are being wooed in a big way to the Ivory Coast, which is overhauling its 30-year-old mining code for their benefit. The objective, according to a draft code presented before the parliament, is to make mining of gold, diamonds and other minerals as important to the economy as its traditional strength, agriculture.

IMF's bete noire

Issue Date: Jul 15, 1995
AN alternative structural adjustment programme (asap), formulated by the Guyana-based Bretton Woods Reform Organisation (bwro), has managed to garner German support for itself. Backed by Germany's ministry of economic cooperation and development, asap is working on over 100 major policy recommendations for the development of people's priorities in every sector of Guyana's economy.

CONGO

Issue Date: Jun 30, 1995
Congolese President Pascal Lissouba has said that the lending policies of development institutions like the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are "deadly" for the heavily indebted nations of Africa because of the social costs of their tough economic reform programmes. Lissouba's own nation is reeling under one of the world's heaviest per capita debt burdens: more than US $5 billion for a population of 3 million.

UNITED NATIONS

Issue Date: Jun 30, 1995
Hailed till recently as a model of efficiency and productivity, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) is reeling under a barrage of criticism today. A UN-commissioned review of its operations has reported that the agency "suffers from illness of a cultural type" which would take years to cure. The 2-volume confidential document is based on interviews with 350 of the UNICEF's 7000-strong staff. The problems stem from discontent amongst the staff. "Staff attitudes are among the worst the consultants have seen in any social or industrial entity in many years," is the verdict.

Do or die development

Issue Date: Apr 30, 1995
Going by the statistics provided by this year's International Labour Organisation report on world employment, "modernise or perish" has become the mantra of progress for developing nations. This is shown in the high growth rates in East and Southeast Asia, and in economic stagnation in sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America.

ZAMBIA

Issue Date: Apr 30, 1995
Zambia's structural adiustment programme has changed the face of its labour force. While over 72,000 adults have been rendered jobless over the last 4 years since the reforms began, children have taken up many jobs in the labour force, according to a survey of the Central Statistics Office. The survey attributes this disturbing trend to increasing job losses as companies crumble under Zambia's demanding new economic environment. The government has compounded the crisis by cut-backs in its public sector wage bill.

PERU

Issue Date: Apr 30, 1995
An unprecedent mining boom is on the cards in Peru as foreign investors make a beeline to grab the opportunities. Foreign investment had come to a standstill since 1970 because of the governments nationalisation programmes and terrorist activities by the dreaded Shining Path guerillas. Foreign investors have taken heart at the recent reforms introduced by President Fujimori that have in one full sweep led to privatisation moves to raise us $2.3 billion, as well as curbed terrorism. Government officials estimate that the value of annual metal production in

No-budging budget

Issue Date: Apr 15, 1995
THE Union budget 1995-96 is a study in warring inclinations. Despite claims of spearheading a "vibrant" and cash-flooded economy, finance minister Manmohan Singh has preferred to keep his purse strings tight as a corset. Expected to consolidate the ongoing reform process, the budget tried to please everyone -- a proposition that robbed it entirely of both depth and adventure.

Pickled power

Author(s): Rakesh Agarwal
Issue Date: Jan 31, 1995
IN THE highland village of Paini, 7 km off Joshimath in the Garhwal Himalayas, the village Mahila Mangal Dal (MMD) -- the women's welfare group -- today has a sizeable treasury of money in its village fund. The fund not only helps the women during lean periods, but also meets the operational costs of running its production and marketing centres for pickles and squash.
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