Sep 1, 2010

Alan Greenspan, The IMF and The World Bank (Part 1 of 10)

The IMF on fiscal policy in the crisis

No one knows exactly how to stop the global economic crisis, but all agree that fiscal stimulus has a key role to play. By reducing the length and depth of the recession, it should reduce bankruptcies, foreclosures, and further asset-price drops. This column presents the main logic in a recent IMF paper authored by one of the world’s leading macroeconomists, Oliver Blanchard, and others.

The World Bank and IMF in Africa

As a result of World Bank and IMF policies, average incomes in Africa have declined and the continent's poverty has increased. Africa's debt crisis has worsened over the past two decades, as the failure of World Bank and IMF intervention has left African countries more dependent than ever on new loans. These institutions have also undermined Africa's health through the policies they have imposed. Forced cutbacks in spending on health care and the privatization of basic services, have left Africa's people more vulnerable to HIV/AIDS and other diseases.

The policies of the World Bank and IMF have come increasingly under fire for the negative impact they have had on African countries. But these institutions, and the U.S. and other wealthy countries that control them, refuse to address these concerns. Instead, they continue to use Africa's debt as leverage to maintain control over the economic policies of African countries. Even as Africa faces the worst health crisis in human history, these institutions insist that debt repayments take priority over spending on the fight against poverty and HIV/AIDS. African countries continue to spend up to five times more on debt servicing than on health care for their populations.

PDF: Impoverishing A Continent


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