(the summit in Addis Ababa, the guardian)
The development finance summit was held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia from 13th to 16th July. The summit aimed at eliminating poverty and accomplish food security all over the world by 2030.
The UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon says “This agreement is a critical step forward in building a sustainable future for all, it provides a global framework for financing sustainable development.” It seems that the secretary general was quite optimistic about the progress. However, developing countries have only gained little improvement in this meeting for some people because no concrete plans have been made in this meeting. Developing countries also encountered obstacle with regard to global tax policy. More than 100 developing countries still remained excluded from decision making on global tax standards. In this sense, less developed countries don’t have real power to express their view regarding global tax system, only the more developed countries such as the United States can make the decision. Besides, the meeting emphasized the role of private sector. However, Non-governmental organization criticized that these private corporations may not benefit the world’s poorest people.
Another problem is a lack of financial support from more developed countries. Since tax reform was always a controversial and influential topic for all the countries. Poor countries were pushing for a global tax body because it would help the poorest nations earn more through tax revenues. Rich nations such as the United States, the United Kingdom and Japan were accused of intervening the meeting. Since rich nations don’t want to make any compromise or economy to harm its economy. The rich countries were also reluctant to provide abundant subsidy to developing countries. According to the role of official development assistance (ODA). Donor countries are urged to commit to spending 0.7% of their gross national income on ODA by the end of the year.
From my point of view, the rich nations should provide more substantial support to the less developed countries. Since rich nations had been through industrialized earlier, they are now enjoying their fruitful result. However, they should also shoulder the responsibility to assist poorer nations to build a stronger economy. For example, rich nations can send expert to less developed countries to build infrastructure and develop technology.
This summit reminded me of China joining World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2001. After China joining the WTO, the economic grew rapidly. This is due to the cancellation of trade barrier. Besides, China committed to provide non-discriminatory treatment to all WTO Members. Many people worried about China joining WTO would lose it independence, China’s economy would be controlled by Western countries. The truth is now China has built healthy and stable relations with member countries, and people’s living standard has been greatly improved. Not only China is gaining profits by joining WTO, Western enterprises can also open Chinese market, which is reciprocal relations between countries. Therefore, more development countries could consider providing subsidy and open the local market in less developed countries in the same time. All in all, international cooperation should be emphasized between countries.
As a matter of fact, Chinese government has been providing funds and resources to less developed countries such as African countries. Regarding providing subsidy, it is worthy to mention that China has a different approach and consideration comparing with Western countries. China was a developing countries from 1950s. The Great Leap Forward, the Three Years of Great Chinese Famine and the Cultural Revolution caused the collapse of economy. Government mistakenly enacted unsuitable and irrational economic plan attributed to low productivity. China who was one of the most backward world economy. The situation changed while China gained rapid economic growth. It is known that the United States is a superpower around the world. In the 1980s and 1990s, China did not establish comprehensive or friendly relations with Western countries. Therefore, China wanted to gained more support from the Third World by providing them subsidy and financial support. This was not merely an economic assistance; political consideration was a major concern as well. In the 1970s, China provides funds and exports to build the Tazara railway. As for Western countries such as United States, natural resource and peacekeeping are important reasons for helping the developing countries.
Meanwhile, the summit has actually gained consensus regarding sustainable development goal including protect the environment, end the poverty and hunger. It is understandable that countries have different consideration while providing monetary support to the third world; but more developed countries cannot avoid the responsibility. They have already enjoyed fruitful achievement; it is time for them to help reducing poverty in the poor countries.
By Angela Tam
Ravenhill, J. (2005). Global political economy. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Chonghaile, C. N. (2015). Addis Ababa outcome: milestone or millstone for the world’s poor? The Guardian. Retrieved from http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2015/jul/16/financing-for-development-summit-outcome-addis-ababa-milestone-millstone-poverty
Anderson, M. (2015). Addis Ababa development finance summit: all you need to know. The Guardian. Retrieved from http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2015/jul/13/addis-ababa-development-finance-summit-all-you-need-to-know-sustainable-development-goals
Swaine,M.D. (2015). China: The Influence of History.The diplomat. Retrieved from http://thediplomat.com/2015/01/china-the-influence-of-history/
WTO successfully concludes negotiations on China’s entry. World Trade Organization.
Retrieved from https://www.wto.org/english/news_e/pres01_e/pr243_e.htm