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First as tragedy, now as farce: lessons from 12 August 1982

Mark Perera

12 Aug 2017 08:47:36

As the saying goes, history repeats itself because no one was listening the first time. This month marks the 35th anniversary of an event that sparked a debt crisis across the developing world. It was a crisis triggered by low interest rates in the Global North, a reckless boom in lending and borrowing to Southern countries over-reliant on commodity exports, and a fall in the price of those same commodities. Sound familiar? The parallels with today’s developing world debt crisis are stark, and looking back at how the 1980s crisis arose and how it was dealt with, there are worrying signs that very little has been learned despite repeated calls by Eurodad and other civil society organisations for a comprehensive, UN-backed debt workout mechanism. A crisis begins On 12 August 1982, Mexican ...
As world leaders prepare for the G20 Summit in Germany later this week, plans for new financing initiatives for Africa have been put in doubt by a US$2 bn loan scandal in Mozambique. The German G20 Presidency intends to use the summit to promote the ...

blog
Countdown to the 2017 UN Financing for Development Forum

Bodo Ellmers

04 May 2017 10:12:45

In less than three weeks, governments, CSOs and international organizations gather at the UN in New York for the Financing for Development Forum. The forum takes place in crucial times as the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals faces severe financial constraints. Governments’ self-inflicted inability to raise sufficient taxes paired with rich countries’ unwillingness to provide sufficient aid means that development is all too often financed by borrowed money, a dilemma that is aggravated by new donor initiatives that even turn the limited grants into new debt, through blending facilities. In the meantime, developing countries’ shouts for debt relief are getting ever louder. This Financing for Development Forum promises to be very interesting.   What’s at stake?  ...

blog
Why we should talk about the origin of Greece’s debt…and then get rid of it

Tiago Stichelmans

26 Jun 2015 14:57:55

The Truth Committee of the Hellenic Parliament has just released a report investigating the origin of Greece’s public debt. It shows that the debt is unsustainable, illegitimate, illegal and odious. Syriza now has two alternatives: repudiate the debt unilaterally or restructure it on the basis of the report.  When Syriza formed a government at the beginning of the year, one of its main objectives was to restructure Greece’s public debt. This explains why the Hellenic Parliament established the ‘Truth Committee on Public Debt’ in April. The objective of this committee is to investigate the origins and increases in the public debt, as well as its consequences.  Two months later, while everyone is interested in knowing whether the Greek government and its creditors will reach ...

press
MEPs to discuss new UN proposals for solving debt crises faster, better and more fairly

MEPs to discuss new UN proposals for solving debt crises faster, better and more fairlyUN experts will present solutions to sovereign debt crises that could bring an end to the misery they cause Monday May 11 2015UN experts will present new solutions to tackling sovereign debt crises during a high level event at the European Parliament tomorrow (Tuesday May 12). MEPs from Greece, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain will be among the audience discussing the process at the UN which aims to create ...
This article is also available in French and Spanish.The prevention of debt crises and the way these crises are managed have a tendency to fail due to the lack of adequate institutions. While Europe is still struggling to solve the old debt crises, ...
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