Friday, January 30, 2009

World Economic Forum told to not forget poor

Attendees to the World Economic Forum have been told not to forget the poor. The message came from United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and others.

This Associated Press article that we found at New Jersey dot com, gives us the details of today's events at the forum

"Last year, we gathered here to declare 2008 the year of the bottom billion," U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said. "These are the poorest people who live on less than a dollar a day, who are vulnerable to every shock that comes."

"As we struggle to cover these and other challenges we must not waiver in our commitment to the poorest of the poor. We must stand by those who are most vulnerable."

It was an appeal repeated throughout the third day of the elite gathering of 2,500 business and political leaders in this well-heeled mountain resort.

The global meltdown has already sapped the developed world of some of its generosity: forecasts calculate a precipitous drop in international investments in poor and developing nations, while charities are resizing their own operations as donations drop.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said lending to emerging countries would drop from $1 trillion two years ago to $150 billion next year. "This is a breach of the promise of global prosperity," Brown exhorted.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who is proposing a U.N. Economic Council out of the ashes of this crisis, similar to the U.N. Security Council formed after the destruction of World War II, said the rights of the poor must be enshrined in the new economic order.

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