Monday, January 7, 2008

The Spirit of Competition...

Can new international financial institutions save struggling Third World economies?

Zambia, Guyana, Iraq... What do these countries have in common? All of them have had massive debts forgiven by China... Bolivia, Venezuela, and Brazil? No forgiveness for this lot, but they're members of the new "Bank of the South" - an alternate source of financial liquidity to the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

The former situation represents the manipulation of more pawns in China's bid for global influence; the second represents the choice of some resource-rich nations to break free from the cycle of just this sort of influence-peddling.

Accept money from the international community? Accept their norms... Accept writeoffs from superpowers? Oh, there's no free lunch.

This insightful op-ed from the Nepali Times (which should rank right up there along with the Daily Show, The Onion, and of course your faithful correspondents occasional missives in terms of quality information provided the average reader) explains in more detail how some countries are seeking to break free of the monopolistic system of international finance.

Neither a borrower nor a lender be, says the proverb, but if you must be one or the other, better a lender - and some say, why not be both?

This can only benefit the world as a whole - because when there is more than one source for a product - even if that product is money - the price tends to fall.

Bravo, my southron friends! The (third) world is banking on your success!

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