Lucy, Linda from Oxfam, Mr G from Sri Lanka Tea Plantation, D.C Ross Gower Did a message about trade justice/global poverty at church yesterday (Amos 8)... it was fascinating speaking there, ay. Like, people discussed these facts at their tables:
1. International trade is worth $10 million a minute.
2. But poor countries only account for 0.4 per cent of this trade. Since 1980 their share has halved.
3. Rigged trade rules cost the developing world $700 billion a year, according to the UN.
4. Income per person in the poorest countries in Africa has fallen by a quarter in the last 20 years.
5. The three richest people in the world control more wealth than all 600 million people living in the world's poorest countries.
6. Nearly half the world's population (2.8 billion people) live on less than US$2 per day.
7. The prices of many poor countries' key exports are at a 150-year low.
8. The world's 50 poorest countries have less than three per cent of the vote at the International Monetary Fund, an institution whose financial decisions spell life and death for ordinary people around the globe. Just one country – the US – has sole veto power.
9. At one full meeting of the World Trade Organisation (an international group who settle on global trade rules) the EU had 500 negotiators. Haiti had none.10. After one round of trade negotiations, rich countries calculated that they would be $141.8 billion better off, while Africa would lose $2.6 billion.
And people were saying things like "Yes, back in my village in East Africa we really felt the brunt of plummeting prices etc" because it is such a multiethinicity place. Surreal.