International Co-operation

international cooperation

International cooperation:

The word “Co-operation” signifies Support. Further we can say its mutual support when we say Development co-operation, and Development co-operation is one of the part of international co-operation which is Global form of assistance given from Developed countries to underdeveloped countries and other way around if we say International cooperation as mutual.

The need of this International cooperation arises primarily because of economic crisis and due to natural calamities and famines and others. For example: Poverty, one of the worldwide prominent problem and issue in which the international co-operation can make important contribution to alleviate and totally eradicate it since this has really impacted indirectly to developed countries themselves in issues of human rights, crime, social injustice and inequality. Now, the question is “Is it possible to eradicate poverty and issues related to it genuinely from all the countries and ensure that everyone feel prosper?” This is itself very challenging now.

Looking in terms of nature of International cooperation, we can see different underlying interest or we can say vested interests along with the international cooperation that the donor country gives to the recipient countries. It’s like give and take relationship among the donor and recipient countries. Sometimes, International cooperation of giving AID could be changing the Under developed countries” government policy itself. This could be high level diplomatic international and strategic relationship that may even feel to the recipient country probing to their sovereignty and solidarity, which can be very sensitive to deal with.

Development cooperation of EU, for example to their recipient countries is politically driven for democratization as well and give assistance in supporting good governance which are their one of the global interest but ultimately for security of their own citizen at first hand because they want peace and protection from Terrorism. And, those who are labeled as terrorist may call themselves as Revolutionary on the other hand. This complex issue to see and understand their strategy as a third separate country, we and What choices we have to make in our development in terms of social security and so on, is very much crucial and complex.

Everything has positive and negative side of it and we can’t deny it because it’s natural in the sense of duality. International cooperation also seems duality in nature. Countries like us should be very capable in terms of dealings and negotiations and we should be able to raise Voices for our own born rights such as in culture and Indigenous practices and others and protect them which are valuable and shouldn’t be wiped out in the name of International development cooperation in developing regions, places and local communities.

So, this is why we say International cooperation is not without controversy.

International co-operation arises in technology transfer, financial aid, Global public goods accessibility and global partnership. Now in Sustainable Development Goals, Level of private partnership has widely addressed. So that sustainable development is only possible through partnership of even local and private bodies within the countries.

So International cooperation may come for supporting entrepreneurship; promoting local products, ideas mobilizing local communities funded by private bodies in collaboration with international funding agency supporting manpower, knowledge and advanced technologies.


Can we include Consciousness as a Development Indicator?

Consciousness as a Development Indicator

Consciousness as a Development Indicator

First of all, I Would like to say that the aim of development, modernization like we see from developed countries in the west – seems not what it is. Development seems multidimensional and holistic. Theories that are made in regards to development, when we see them from realities, we feel if something is missing. That’s not all what we are measuring. But even if we go deepening our critical insight into play, they don’t seem to offer any alternatives. And that is a big Dilemma over all.

To overcome and come out of these Dilemmas, what could be one of the indicators of development if possible to measure it scientifically.  If we are able to measure Consciousness of whole living beings, then that can be multidimensional and holistic as similar to the nature of development we see. And, to explain it more, when we are conscious of development then we feel development. Even if we see something under developing with the lenses of the present development indicators, looking through the lenses of consciousness it may represent different and complete in itself.

So, if we take consciousness as a Indicator, it doesn’t only refer to individualism as in the case of Amartysen capability approach, but it can be refer to global as global consciousness, if we are able to measure and interpret it.

So, with the present world of questioning to Development itself like whether we need development or not, why paradigms have been shifting and lots of variation in alternative development we see – consciousness could be the development indicators to make present world perception of development to complete and make the process in wholeness.

If we go to consciousness taking into consideration, we would be going to address its high energy fields. So, As we come to know that everything is energy and energy has its own field. So, in this perspective if we look development, Development is a high energy field. This can also be included in Human development, culture and power – which are nothing but the high energy fields.

When we are going to address high energy fields, then certainly we would be analyzing in terms of their frequencies of energy fields. From single energy fields to combine with multiple energy fields, we would be looking its combined form and may call it synergy or combined consciousness of same frequencies.

So, we would be able to look into development from subtle level of human existence, then this could be accurate in terms of holistic, multidimensional and energy fields that we are analyzing development in terms of consciousness, energy and frequencies.

Foreign direct investment ( FDI )- Does it actually contribute to Economic growth ?

Foreign direct Investment

FDI itself is not a core and all for the economic growth but it does certainly gives a role of play in accelerating the economic growth. FDI favors in the invested region/country only if certain criteria of environment of market and Trade condition have been fulfilled in favor of FDI inflows

.Foreign direct Investment - Economic growth

“Foreign direct investment (FDI) is an investment made by a company or individual in one country in business interests in another country, in the form of either establishing business operations or acquiring business assets in the other country, such as ownership or controlling interest in a foreign company.”
Although high inflow of FDI, in poor countries where if government doesn’t have policy implication renders to FDI objectives or interests, then FDI can’t play a role in primary concerns of poor countries such as poverty alleviation and so on.
In addition, FDI inflow comes together with technology being likely to transfer from the hosted countries to the recipient countries and to run that system of technicality in the recipient country requires skills to be upgraded in the region which could be an obstacle but more challenging in positive terms of growth being concerned.
Furthermore, Multinational Companies, for instances, established in the regions of the country in one terms employs FDI and gives opportunity for employment and gives knowledge & skills of technology being transferred, but in the same way, it discourages and replaced sometimes the domestic investment resources mobilization which by all means one way or another, is not a favorable situation for the sustainable development in the above regions of the country.
In some countries, the above cases have been seen in the countries where they already have idle real resources and FDI plays a role in utilizing those Idle resources to make them contribute to the economy and financing development. This also proved that FDI inflows are there just as an accelerators or acts as a catalyst in their development process.
Since FDI role being as a catalyst only and due to the effect of rendering existing resources from Idle to real, many times leads to country’s economy to be dependent on foreign investment which is certainly a negative effect of FDI in economic growth.
Taking into consideration of sustainable economic growth and take FDI role in the country as a catalytic role, then definitely FDI contributes towards financing development over a long period of time. It creates jobs, boosts overall productivity, enhance competitiveness and entrepreneurships, and eradicate poverty through economic growth and development, and the OECD reckons the same as “increasingly, FDI has been recognized as a powerful engine and major catalyst for achieving development, poverty reducing growth and global integration.”
In World economic situation and prospectus 2016, it has been shown in Chapter III, page 89; there is a high correlation between investment and domestic savings. A few countries have enjoyed surplus on both current and capital accounts. This is associated with accumulation of resource assets – some part of it recycled back to developed countries as capital and formed government bonds in developed country. But this accounts only for capital account liberalizations.
We also have to see and take care of the nature of FDI as it is very volatile in nature. The impact of sudden surges or exits of short term capital flows can be seriously effect in sustainable growth and development. That means if FDI is for the short terms, it could hamper in development process over all. So, International Donors or its financing system of allocating resources for long term sustainable development needs is a must. Then only, it will really help the recipient country by FDI inflows for country’s stable growth.
Thus, we have already seen there are some critics which have been mentioned above already and requirement of some of the criteria for inducing better environment of FDI role to take part in the country.

So, Yes!! The FDI has some limitations and can’t be applied to all circumstances as everyone including human has some flaws and not all perfect on its own, FDI does contributes to economic growth although it has some limitations or flaws in itself.

Reading materials:
1. Nunnenkamp, Peter (2003): FDI as a source of finance for development; CUTS, Jaipur, India
2. UNCTD (2005): FDI as an important source of Finance.
3. Patnaik, Prabhat: FDI as a source of financing development
4. United nation ( 2016): World economic situation and perspective 2016

Enviornmental Sustainablity & its indicators – index

We live in the environment using its resources. For instance, we breathe in air (oxygen) and excrete out the byproduct (Co2) to the environment. Then, it recycled through the ecosystem of environment generating again fresh air so that we live in and adapt to this living environment of earth. However, Scientists have found the depletion of protective layer (Ozone) surrounding the earth; without which the sustainability of earth and its life forms is being questioned. The availability of  air are still with us but slowly the quality of air we breathe in has been degrading in the major cities and places where huge industrialization has been established. Somehow, environment has still been sustained but we are questioning ourselves how the environmental sustainability can be achieved in better ways and how the change in environment could impact us and how we could measure and maintain the suitable environment to live in. The failure to maintain its sustainability could hamper the peoples’ life socially, economically, politically and geographically.

Definition of environmental sustainability: is the rates of renewable resource harvest, pollution creation, and non-renewable resource depletion that can be continued indefinitely. If they cannot be continued indefinitely then they are not sustainable.

1.[ For renewable resources] The rate of harvest should not exceed the rate of regeneration (sustainable yield);2. [For pollution] The rates of waste generation from projects should not exceed the assimilative capacity of the environment (sustainable waste disposal); and3.[For nonrenewable resources ]The depletion of the nonrenewable resources should require comparable development of renewable substitutes for that resource.

Herman Daly, 1990 A.D

It has two coins terms Environment and the other is sustainability. To look into the indicators which are the measuring tools applied for decision makings are:

  1. Environmental sustainability index (ESI): This indicator is being developed by World economic forum 2002. It represents first step towards analytic driven approach to environmental decision making. The ESI scores are based upon a set of 20 core indicators each of which combines two to eight variables for a total of 68 underlying variables. It permits cross national comparison of environmental progress in systemically and quantitatively.
  2. Well being/stress index: Wellbeing index (WI) combines 36 indicators of health, population, wealth, education, communication, freedom, peace, crime, and equity into the Human Wellbeing index, and 51 indicators of land, biodiversity, water quality and supply, air quality and global atmosphere, and energy and resource use pressures into an Ecosystem Wellbeing index. The two indexes are then combined into the Wellbeing/Stress Index(Prescott-Allen, 2001).

Some other indicators are: Ecological footprint (EF), Living planet index (LPI)

Review of Amartya Sen: Freedom of choice -concept and content

Freedom of choice : Concept and content.

In this lecture, Amartya Sen gave profound argument regarding freedom; its concept and different ways of valuing it. He addressed economic issues in terms of  freedom of choice and seeing it through basic economic notions as individual  well beings, social welfare, living standard, consistent choice and rational behavior in a different perspective if not, otherwise would be  restrictive and limiting in its own nature of discipline.

He not only illustrated the instrumental importance of freedom but also argued about considering its intrinsic worth which we should not ignore while evaluating its role in economic assessment. He mentioned this as a “non-sequitur” i.e. it didn’t follow formal logic to describe the argument of such a change. For instance, it wouldn’t affect a person’s real interest (self worth) if there is reduction of freedom of choice (denial of instrumental importance) and its relevance.

He analyzed positive and negative characteristic of freedom in which a person can choose to do or achieve, on the absence of particular type of restraint that prevent him/her from doing alternatives – that would be positive freedom and the negative view of freedom focuses precisely on absence of a class of restraint that one person may exercise over another. In this, he mentioned Frank Knight remarks as deprivation of freedom being deprivation of “Power.”

The decision on choosing choices is based on purely as constraints on personal behavior and his/her internal tension. This problem of internal tension, which may be resolved by embedding the value of negative freedom in a structure of consequences, for those can coexist in their lives with terrible hardships and miseries, he explained. However, focusing totally on negative characteristic of freedom is inadequate. So, there is clearly a situation for paying attention to over all freedoms which is positive freedoms.

He analyzed positive freedom and relating it with capabilities, he stated judging freedom of choice in terms of peoples command over commodity bundles has limitation in a way that there can be enormous interpersonal variation in relating the actual ability of a person to do. A person’s absolute capabilities to do something relate closely to a person’s relative position of what others in the society possess and use. So, it showed enormous heterogeneity of human being in terms of personal, social and natural characteristics. And, freedom of choice reflects our ability to achieve valuable functioning and well beings in the society. Further precisely, he described the freedom to choose between functioning bundles reflects a person’s “advantage” – his/her “capabilities” to function – that person may able to achieve so called positive freedom.

He illustrated with assessment of different sources such as  World development report 1986, for inter country comparison of GNP per head and Life expectancy,  Cause of death; Life tables for National population ( New York, 1972) for extension of Life expectancy at birth, in England and Wales 1901 -60; Similarly, source from Evolution of Government policies and Expenditure on social welfare in Sri lanka during the 20th Century, Colombo, 1985, comparative food availability per head 1983 India and Sub-Saharan Africa; Source from World development report 1986, China – India Comparative perspective; Life expectancy at birth in China and India; which overall illustrated how role of intervention of public policy and its implications on freedom to live had achieved and changed quite radically as a instrumental role of freedom in different countries  with its relevance to social reforms and political freedom as well. They focus on freedom as diverse instrumental roles as well as having intrinsic importance.

However, he slightly shifted his argument giving different perspective explaining that if freedom is only instrumentally valued, then valuation of the person’s capability to function would be no different from evaluating the chosen functioning bundle in the respective capability set with the fact that the person’s actual functioning to choose need not to be coincide with evaluation of the chosen element of it because “choosing” may itself an important functioning.

So, refining its notion of function that simple modification gives many implications, in particularly its impact on ideas of consistent choice and rational behavior under certainty and uncertainty which are the central ideas of modern economic theory. His concepts of refinement its notion of functioning actually violated it and the problem arises as the description of living is not just formal but deeply substantive, he added. So this refinement can add to the interest of enterprenial methodology as he justified before his concluding remarks. He stated at the end that the foundational importance of freedom may well be the far reaching substantive problem neglected in standard economics.

In his concluding remarks, he briefly addressed few issues which may be the matter of attention.

Firstly, the intrinsic importance of freedom of choice has to be different with its instrumental relevance while it is undeniable of having role of freedom as a means to other side. Even though, its intrinsic value  has often neglected in the standard literature( preferring to focus on what Milton Friedman calls “ the fecundity of freedom”)

Secondly, It is possible to give special importance to negative freedom even when over all positive freedom is also valued.

Thirdly, the perspective of concentrating exclusively on negative freedom – ignoring positive freedom is deeply vulnerable to external critiques.

Fourthly, the choice of the space in which positive freedom is to be characterized and assessed is one of the great analytical interest and practical importance. In this context, the alternative for real incomes, primary goods, and functioning and capabilities were examined and assessed.

Fifthly, the role of public intervention in promoting positive freedom in developing countries was discussed and illustrated drawing on international comparison specifically China, India, Sri lanka and Sub-Saharan Africa, ( and also of Britain from earlier period.)

Finally, Issues of methodology in an enterprise raised to be assessed in the context of “choosing” as an important functioning, and the characterization of chosen alternatives in a “refined” way which is a substantive problem neglected in standard economics.