Macro-economic Environment & Impact on Rural Poor

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By Steve Wiggins, ODI
Brussels, 4 July 2007

Published in: Economy & Finance, Technology
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Macro-economic Environment & Impact on Rural Poor

  1. 1. Macro-economic Environment & Impact on Rural Poor Steve Wiggins Overseas Development Institute Brussels Rural Development Briefing, Brussels 4th July 2007
  2. 2. Challenges & Threats <ul><li>Some well known: </li></ul><ul><li>HIV/AIDS </li></ul><ul><li>Climate change & associated environmental impacts  e.g. loss biodiversity </li></ul><ul><li>Changing supply chains: increasing reach of conglomerates into rural Africa </li></ul><ul><li>World markets for food and agricultural produce: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Outcome of trade and other reforms in North </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>China, India as significant importers? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Biofuels </li></ul></ul>
  3. 5. Challenges & Threats (con’d) <ul><li>Some less appreciated than they should be: </li></ul><ul><li>Macroeconomic conditions & success of urban economies </li></ul><ul><li>Unknowns & surprises  some possibly pleasant, e.g. mobile phones </li></ul><ul><li>And be prepared to recognise success in Africa </li></ul>
  4. 8. Implications <ul><li>(Some) threats: uncertain, tomorrow </li></ul><ul><li>Poverty & hunger: certain, today </li></ul><ul><li>So current agenda applies </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Agricultural development </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Non-farm economy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Urban-rural links </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social protection </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reform of trade & OECD subsidies </li></ul></ul>
  5. 9. Disaster Preparedness <ul><li>Poor record: </li></ul><ul><li>Southern Africa faces droughts predictable over decade if not for exact years </li></ul><ul><li>Since 1991/92, since 2002: </li></ul><ul><li>Where are preparations? </li></ul>
  6. 10. Resilience <ul><li>Unpredictable events: capacity to adapt </li></ul><ul><li>History: African farmers cope with changes over decades </li></ul><ul><ul><li>e.g. loss soil fertility … so climate change? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Less good when onset is rapid </li></ul><ul><ul><li>pests, diseases, market prices </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Diversification helps: on-farm & locally, but also </li></ul><ul><li>Better links & more opp’s nationally & globally </li></ul>

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