10.11.2008

Global perspective on the bailout

What would $700 billion do in the global fight against poverty? Thoughts from an Oxfam researcher:
· Would clear the accumulated debt of the 49 poorest countries in the world ($375bn) twice over
· Is almost 5 times the annual amount of extra aid needed to achieve all the Millennium Development Goals on poverty, health, education etc ($150bn a year)
· Is about 7 years of current global aid levels ($104bn in 2007)
· Is enough to eradicate all world poverty for over two years (UNDP calculates it would take $300bn to get the entire world population over the $1 a day poverty line).
On the other hand, he notes that the rescue package is 1/4 the to-date cost of the Iraq war and half of annual global military spending. (HT: Brother Maynard)

Digging further, a World Bank economist notes that while the African banking system is relatively immune from the domino effect of the banking crisis, if the recession reverses the increasing flows of capital into Africa, growth and poverty reduction programs could be hurt and millions of lives could be at risk.

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