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About the Author

Ana Silva
Student (Coimbra,Portugal)

Undergraduate student of International Relations, with special interest on gender studies, European Union, international organisations and theories of IR, among other things. I will focus essentially on MDGs, as I consider these to be a very important "feature" that embodies the most important premises of the international system at the present time. They are probably going to fail, but even so we ought to call for the conscience of everybody, so that people become aware of what is being done by their national governments concerning the problems that ultimately affect each and every one of us.


Target 8.A: Commercial & Financial System

Published 12th June 2010 - 1 comments - 1389 views -

Target 8.A: Commercial & Financial System


I. Principles of action: “Develop further an open, rule-based, predictable, non-discriminatory trading and financial system”.


II. Criticisms:

There are plenty of critics of MDGs and the role played by developed countries in fulfilling the conditions to reach the goals. For this analysis of MDG8 we will introduce the perspective of Samir Amin in order to promote a critical reading of the Goal/targets and advance some of the possible reasons that justify the (lack of) progress achieved. Concerning this specific target, Amin “points his finger” at the indicators used to measure that progress, these being the “share of exports in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP)” to assess progress in the access to the market, and the “reduction of given subsidies” to conclude on the enhancement of conditions of non-discrimination. Even though these are rather complex economic variables that would need further explanation to be properly understood, it is important to emphasize how these indicators may lead to biased conclusions that do not necessarily reflect the real social situation that results from these so-called improvements attained by developing countries. Finally, this target can be rather easily associated to the establishment of a free international market, quite in accordance with the principles of economic liberalism that Amin considers to be responsible for a considerable deal of the dreadful situations many developing countries face nowadays.


III. Progress:


Allegedly due to the recent financial and economic crisis, progress on this target are not very significant, given that a new wave of “economic protectionism” has started to emerge, while at the same time the multilateral negotiations of the Doha Round have met no relevant evolution so far, which is considered to be a serious strain on the advancement of the idea of a global partnership for development. Also, agricultural production in developed countries continues to be highly subsidized (despite the compromise to eliminate these subventions on exports until 2013) making it difficult for developing countries to compete in the international market, and therefore to develop in that context.

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  • Hanna Clarys on 24th June 2010:

    Hey Ana! Seems like I missed your posts before…
    But interesting and helpful that you’re putting them on a line for us.

    Especially the part about the recent gulf of protectionism and the high subsidies for agriculture. That’s even a problem inside the EU, and then we don’t even speak of the effects on developing countries in other parts of the world.

    Thanks for highlighting this.

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