Monday, April 14, 2008

Somebody's about to make a lot of money

Zoellick said he had received positive feedback for his proposal to have sovereign wealth funds -- huge pools of capital controlled by governments -- invest one percent of their resources in Africa. He said this could provide $30 billion to African growth.

He said the bank was following up on the proposal in discussions with countries that have sovereign wealth funds, mainly in Asia and the Middle East, through the International Finance Corporation, the bank's private sector arm.

"Hunger, malnutrition and food policy have formed a recurrent theme at this weekend's meetings, and I believe that we have made progress," Zoellick said. "But it will be important to continue to retain the focus on this as we leave Washington."

Source: This CNN Money article about world food prices.


Max The IT pro said...

"Hunger, malnutrition and food policy have formed a recurrent theme at this weekend's meetings, and I believe that we have made progress,"

Why isn't that an interesting observation. Quite frankly, I think that UNCONTROLLED POPULATION INCREASES are solely responsible for "hunger, malnutrition" and questionable food policies. Everywhere I go in Kenya, it's the poor (and I don't mean to sound alarmist or mean spirited) who are producing so many kids. In fact, the Youths (age 16-35) in Kenya make up 70% of the population. Combine that with a high rate of unemployment, social unrest, and SOMETIMES, political instability (essentially because of over population and lack of access to certain resources hoarded by rich corrupt politicians et al) and well, you got a ticking time bomb just waiting to be exploited in that illiterate game we call TRIBALISM.

But what most people fail to grasp is that there are TOO MANY DAMN POOR PEOPLE HAVING BABIES. It's as simple as that. Contrast Kenya to Singapore and Malaysia back in the early 70s. All 3 were at the same stage of development.

It's ironic that you need a drivers license in order to drive a car. Ditto for a pilot's license to fly an airplane; or an MD to do open heart surgery. Yet, it's EASY as pie (pun intended) to produce a living breathing entity otherwise known as a BABY. It's too easy (and I'll add, fun too!). And therein lies the problem!

So, all those peeps at the World Bank can speculate on the merits of using sovereign wealth funds. But unless society tackles the problem of disproportionate population increases, we're phucked!!!

Just look at countries like Mexico, Brazil, Egypt, Nigeria et al with their very large POOR populations. Will they ever turn the corner ECONOMICALLY? I just don't think enough jobs can be created fast enough to employ those masses - even in this era of globalization. I'm not afraid to say this. What about our LEADERS? Are they gonna step up to the plate and sound the ALARM?

Thankfully, Canada is a very large country with only 30 million peeps, and all that oil out West and on the Atlantic side (Hibernia) is helping to push the Canadian dollar ever higher. But its population has always hovered around 30-32 million. And that's my point. Uncontrolled birth rates in a developing country, high illiteracy, and a POOR or fragile economy will always lead to a life of misery.

To conclude, control the out-of-control birth rates, and there'll be less of everything: Fighting, corruption, tribalism, natural disasters.

t said...

I feel your pain for the desperate situation of poor countries and poor people with too many children to care for.

I don't think the responsibility should lie on the poorest to solve the social problems, though. I mean, they're already struggling.

What they need is a break: more of the money they need, more knowledge of how to earn (and maybe also advice on how children stress their financial situation etc. so they can make better decisions.)

But you know, people have children, it's not a rich person privilege, and one can argue that money isn't everything when it comes to children...I mean nobody says "don't have kids" to superbusy professionals or to abusive alcoholics even though they may pose a bigger risk to their children.

Ayayai, emotional topic.

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