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Home > Press releases
22-09-04 // 22:08h


The session on commercial liberalization and eradication of poverty within the Dialogue "Contributing to the Global Agenda" has focused on the positive role of globalization in poor countries

The Director of Development Policy for the World Bank, David Dollar, spoke of China as an example of globalization and reduction of poverty. Dollar pointed out that: "When China began its reformation process 25 years ago it was poorer than India or countries in sub-Saharan Africa".

Dollar explained that China: "Had a good investment climate, something which is not seen in Brazil where companies lose 20% of their production through Customs". For Dollar it is important to create "this good climate of investments and production to be able to bring about maintainable growth".

According to Dollar: "Globalization is a positive force for growth and development in poor countries". Dollar said that China has expanded on a commercial level since it not only exports but also imports. He went on to explain that: "81% of the Chinese population thinks that globalization is positive for the country, whereas that is not the case in the United States or France". Dollar thinks that: "Globalization is more popular in the developing countries".

In his opinion, Dollar says, "in general globalization accelerates development although it is still protectionism in the rich countries that is causing harm to the poor". In this sense, Dollar thinks that: "Subsidies result in the developing world becoming poorer".

In the case of China, Dollar thinks that: "The country has benefited from economic growth, which has brought about an improvement in living standards: 99% of the population now have electricity in their homes and basic education levels have risen".

Nevertheless, Dollar emphasized that the exception to this growth among the poor countries is sub-Saharan Africa: "whose poverty levels have risen over the last 10 years". For Dollar the cause behind this increase is a lack of investment. In addition, Dollar said that: "Aid to developing countries often increases the capacity of the corrupt governments".

By way of conclusion, Dollar explained that to improve globalization in the poor countries it is first necessary for the rich countries "to make an effort to reduce poverty, create a climate of good investments and a regime of free trade".

On the other hand, the director of the PNUD Report On Human Development, Kevin Watkins, said that urgent attention should be given to "the economic forces and poverty". For Watkins the debate on globalization "is based on different forms of understanding and interpretation of this process". "Globalization is not experienced in the same way by Asians, Latin American or Africans".

Watkins believes that: "The problem of globalization is not about whether it is good or bad, but that we should try to manage it better". In Watkins' view: "Globalization is not such a new process but it is in terms of the important value of commercial exchange". "The exponential increase over the last 20 years means that we are all more dependent on trade", added Watkins. He considers that: "Europe has an impact on the rest of the world, new responsibilities and new obligations".

Watkins also went on to explain that the positive effects have not reached Africa. For that reason, he supports the idea that: "If we want to see social justice we have to give more aid to the poor than to the rich, we need to distribute progress evenly".

"The challenge doesn't lie in fighting globalization but in finding the right way to end the perpetuation of injustices", concluded Watkins.

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