By Jan P. Pronk
This quantity provides a cutting-edge debate at the arguable subject of improvement aid.
- The individuals are all specialists within the box of overseas development.
- Presents a few difficult conclusions concerning the position that relief performs in catalysing, or stifling, development.
- Represents quite a lot of diversified analytical perspectives.
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Extra info for Catalysing Development: A Debate on Aid (Development and Change Special Issues)
For example, the World Bank uses the phrase ‘severely indebted low-income countries’ to describe countries on the basis of their per capita income and various indicators of their public external debt burden. This language ignores the existence of private external assets: financial and other wealth held abroad by private citizens of ‘debtor countries’. Data on private external assets are less readily available than data on public 26 James K. Boyce external debts, in part because many of the assets were acquired through dubious means and transferred abroad in violation of foreign-exchange controls.
One size fits all’ prescriptions are rarely good recipes. There must be a balance specific to each country between political democracy and economic efficiency, between the role of the state and that of the market, between national and international governance, between export promotion and import substitution, and so forth. The second lesson is that capacity and institution building are crucial prerequisites for new policy moves to have a chance of success. Development aid can be of special use here.
In the meantime, however, some issues can be more readily addressed by drawing on existing competencies. For example, the international financial institutions are well-endowed with expertise in matters of fiscal policy. It would not require a gigantic intellectual leap to extend their focus beyond the size of budget deficits to devote more attention to the overall ratio of revenue and expenditure to national income (as opposed to the gap between the two), the composition of public spending (for example, the relative magnitude of military versus social expenditure), and the distributional incidence of taxation and expenditure — all of which are particularly critical issues in war-torn societies (Boyce, 2000).
Catalysing Development: A Debate on Aid (Development and Change Special Issues) by Jan P. Pronk