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June 2005

Wolfowitz stresses private-sector role in Africa

At last weeks US-Africa Business Summit in Baltimore, World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz stressed the important role that the private sector can play in Africa’s future development and growth:

The Girl in the Café

Lots of hype, started well, ended in disappointment – well maybe not officially, but at least that’s my view. Had heard great things about “The Girl in the Café” – the new HBO/BBC romantic comedy set in the upcoming G8 summit and packed with development economics and social commentary – and through the first 30 minutes everything was going fine. Then came the long unoriginal speeches and a focus on the lacking convictions of the delegates instead of the severity of the problem at hand.

Can the market and private sector solve the world’s water crisis?

Waterforsale The privatization of water services has received scorching criticism, the argument being that the provision of water is much too important to be left to the private sector.

Impacts of China’s “dangerous” energy strategy?

On the behalf of imagery, some words from Sebastian Mallaby:

“Some people fear the economic threat from China. Others fret about expensive oil. With the skill of an accomplished arsonist, China has now poured gas on the flames of these separate anxieties, turning two medium-size fires into a single inferno.”

Clashing over property rights in China

The current edition of the Economist describes how recent bloody clashes between peasants and thugs highlight the problems with China’s ambiguous property right laws and the corruption that they fuel:

US Supreme Court vs. Property Rights

Everyone is talking about today's US Supreme Court decision allowing the seizure of private property for development purposes, as long as the seizure serves a “public use.” Justice Sandra Day O’Connor's dissention was quite strong:

Red-tape makes UK restaurants better

Food2 In the latest issue of Forbes Richard Karlgaard lets us know that the word “entrepreneurs” comes from France. So perhaps fittingly the high levels of red-tape in France are to blame for the improved London dinning scene:

Enact PSD reforms, visit the White House

Vietnam’s PM met with Bush yesterday at the White House. The Wall Street Journal makes the point that this meeting would not have been possible if it weren’t for the success of Vietnam’s recent economic reforms. They praise the role of the private sector:


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