Economics & Global Affairs

10 Items

Customers shop for vegetables at a supermarket in Hangzhou, China, 14 Oct. 2011. China’s inflation eased somewhat in September, but food costs, a major force behind price rises, remained stubbornly high by jumping 13.4 percent, the same as in August.

AP Photo

Policy Brief - Quarterly Journal: International Security

To Stay Ahead of China, Stay Engaged in Asia

| January 2012

"China narrowed the gap in terms of gross domestic product (GDP) and will likely overtake the United States as the world's largest economy sometime between 2015 and 2040. What matters for national power, however, is not gross wealth, but net wealth—the wealth left over after people are clothed and fed. China's 1.3 billion people produce a large volume of output, but they also consume most of it immediately, leaving little left over for national purposes."

12th Summit of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, COMESA, at the United Nations Complex in Nairobi, Kenya, May 22, 2007. Leaders of Africa's largest trade bloc discuss a timetable for creating a 20-state customs union.

AP Photo

Policy Brief - Science, Technology, and Globalization Project, Belfer Center

Africa Can Feed Itself in a Generation

| January 2011

African agriculture is at a crossroads. Persistent food shortages are now being compounded by new threats arising from climate change. But Africa also has three major opportunities that can help transform its agriculture to be a force for economic growth. First, advances in science, technology, and engineering worldwide offer Africa new tools needed to promote sustainable agriculture. Second, efforts to create regional markets will provide new incentives for agricultural production and trade. Third, a new generation of African leaders is helping the continent focus on long-term economic transformation.

Sept. 1, 2010:  A coal-fired power plant emits smoke during the night in Changchun, China. Widely seen as an obstacle in the Copenhagen climate summit, China spent $34.6 billion on clean energy in 2009, nearly double the U.S. investment.

AP Photo

Policy Brief - Harvard Project on Climate Agreements, Belfer Center

The International Climate Change Regime: The Road from Copenhagen

    Author:
  • Daniel Bodansky
| October 2010

"...[T]he Copenhagen Accord is "only" a political agreement, so it does not provide sufficient assurance that countries will take action. But how much difference does it make that the Copenhagen Accord is a political rather than a legal agreement? Obviously, political agreements do not require domestic ratification, so they provide a weaker signal of domestic commitment. But the legal versus non-legal form of an instrument makes less of a difference in other respects, such as judicial enforcement, since even when an agreement is legally-binding, there are relatively few opportunities for adjudication either internationally or domestically. And evidence from other regimes suggests that states often take non-binding agreements quite seriously and make significant efforts to implement them."

In a Sep. 28, 2010 photo released by Korean Central News Agency via Korea News Service, delegates clap in unison during the ruling Workers' Party representatives meeting in Pyongyang, North Korea.

AP Photo

Policy Brief - United States Institute of Peace

North Korea's Leadership Succession: The China Factor

| September 28, 2010

On September 28, North Korean state media announced that Kim Jong-il's third son, Kim Jong-eun, was promoted to the rank of four-star general just prior to the opening of the Workers' Party of Korea conference. Kim Jong-eun was later named vice chairman of the Party's Central Military Commission at the conference. These important developments follow the late August meeting between Chinese President Hu Jintao and North Korean leader Kim Jong-il in Changchun, near the Sino-DPRK border, which appears to have cleared the way for this Party conference. After the meeting, both countries' state media reported the leaders' support for the rising generation of the Party — a clear reference to Kim Jong-eun.

Policy Brief - Harvard Project on Climate Agreements, Belfer Center

Climate Finance

    Author:
  • The Harvard Project on International Climate Agreements
| November 2009

The finance of climate mitigation and adaptation in developing countries represents a key challenge in the negotiations on a post-2012 international climate agreement. Finance mechanisms are important because stabilizing the climate will require significant emissions reductions in both the developed and the developing worlds, and therefore large-scale investments in energy infrastructure. The current state of climate finance has been criticized for its insufficient scale, relatively low share of private-sector investment, and insufficient institutional framework. This policy brief presents options for improving and expanding climate finance.

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Policy Brief - Harvard Project on Climate Agreements, Belfer Center

Breaking the Climate Impasse with China: A Global Solution—Summary

| November 2009

International climate negotiations are at an impasse because the world's two largest greenhouse gas (GHG) emitters, the United States and China, are unwilling to accept binding emission-reduction commitments. At the same time, each blames the other for its inaction. This paper proposes a global "deal" for breaking the deadlock in a way that reconciles both countries' economic concerns with the imperative of reducing emissions. The deal has two core elements: (1) All major emitting countries agree to reduce GHG emissions by implementing significant, mutually agreeable, domestic policies and (2) The largest industrialized-country emitters agree to establish a global Carbon Mitigation Fund that would finance the incremental cost of adopting low-carbon technologies in developing countries.

Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo speaks at the High-Level Dialogue on Climate Change, June 17, 2009, at the Asian Development Bank in the Philippines. The bank pledged to double its clean energy investments in the region to $2 billion yearly.

AP Photo

Policy Brief - Harvard Project on Climate Agreements, Belfer Center

Three Pillars of Post-2012 International Climate Policy

| October 23, 2009

Our proposal for a post-2012 international global climate policy agreement contains three essential elements: meaningful involvement by key industrialized and developing nations; an emphasis on an extended time path of targets; and inclusion of market-based policy instruments. This architecture is consistent with fundamental aspects of the science, economics, and politics of global climate change.

President Barack Obama welcomes China's Vice Preier Wang Qishan, left, as he opens the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue in Washington, Monday, July 27, 2009.

AP Photo

Policy Brief - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Improving U.S.-China Relations: The Next Steps

| August 2009

A higher Renminbi will have two advantages: for the United States, it will help to equilibrate the past trade imbalance; for China, it will stimulate consumption (and enhance imports). It will therefore help China switch from a purely exporting strategy to one that maintains domestic growth through internal consumption.  The goods that were to be sent abroad can now be consumed by an increasingly middle class nation at home.  These steps will bring China and the United States closer economically and increase international stability. However, unless the military-security relations of the two countries improve, this will not be a sufficient remedy for the two nations' long term problems.