Global efforts for financial stability have picked up after the 2008 global economic crisis, but anxieties about such a crisis, and the organisations for promotion of financial stability, have existed since much before. These organisations facilitate cooperation between governments and central banks with the aim to avert or reduce the likelihood and negative impact of another financial crisis.Continue reading
While the global multilateral financial institutions have remained dominated by the western countries, the influence of Asian countries in these institutions is growing. Meanwhile, certain financial mechanisms have been built by the Asian Countries to support their economic development and to widen their choices for development financing.Continue reading
Africa is a vast continent of 55 countries, and covers 20% of the earth’s land area. It is the second largest and the second most populous continent, first being Asia. Africa has been the hotspot of colonialism, the legacies of which still mar the continent. Let us have a look at African organisations and associated agreements of trade and cooperation.
The African Union (AU) is a continental union of all 55 countries on the African continent. It was established in 2002, as the successor to the Organisation of African Unity. It does not include territories held by foreign sovereigns: Spain (Canary islands, etc), France (Reunion, Scattered Islands in Indian Ocean, etc), Portugal and the UK.Continue reading
Headquarters: Paris, France.
The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) is an intergovernmental economic organisation, essentially a forum, founded in 1961 to stimulate economic progress and world trade. It has 36 member countries, but engages with other countries too. Most OECD members are high-income economies.
The predecessor of OECD, Organisation for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC) originated in 1948 to administer American and Canadian aid in the framework of the Marshall plan for the reconstruction of Europe after World War II.
Organisations and Activities under the OECD framework
- International Energy Agency (IEA) is established under OECD framework.
- PISA – Programme for International Student Assessment is a worldwide study in member and non-member nations, conducted by OECD, to evaluate scholastic performance of 15 year olds in maths, science and reading.
- International Transport Forum
- Intergovernmental think-tank on transport policy issues
- India is a member.
- Financial Action Task Force (FATF) is headquartered at OECD, France. It works to promote adherence to anti-money laundering (AML) and anti-financing of terrorism (AFT) norms by the banks and financial institutions.
- BEPS (Base Erosion Profit Shifting) Action Plan, and CbCR (Country by Country Reporting) are OECD initiatives to address tax evasion.
- Nuclear Energy Agency – an intergovernmental agency.
- India is not a member.
Refugees are people who have been forced to leave their country in order to escape war, persecution, or natural disaster, and seek refuge in another country. The Principle of Non-refoulement is a fundamental principle of international law, which states that refugees or asylum seekers shall not be forced to return to a country where they are liable to be persecuted.
Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees
Also known as the 1951 Refugee Convention, the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees is a United Nations multilateral treaty that defines who is a refugee, and also sets out their rights, and the responsibilities of nations towards them, such as fair treatment, free access to courts, public relief, freedom of religion, visa-free travel, non-refoulement, etc.
The original 1951 convention had some limitations: it recognised only those refugees whose circumstances have been caused by an event occuring before 1951, and allowed parties to the convention to interpret this as “events occuring in Europe” or “events occurring in Europe or elsewhere”. The 1967 Protocol to the convention removed both these temporal and geographic restrictions.Continue reading
Regional groupings are formed to pursue common goals in a collective and cooperative manner, such as economic development, trade, political stability, etc. Some regional groupings have been very successful in achieving their goal, such as the ASEAN, that has enabled southeast asian nations to effectively deal with the rest of the world as a bloc, while some regional groupings are just on paper and yet to be fructified.
India, being a large developing country, is bound to be affected by every significant regional grouping across the world. Here are the most prominent of such organisations:
South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation – SAARC
Headquarters: Kathmandu, Nepal.
SAARC is the regional intergovernmental organisation of nations in South Asia, created for regional integration. It was founded in 1985 in Dhaka. It launched the South Asia Free Trade Area in 2006. But the organisation is stifled in its functioning due to rivalry between India and Pakistan, and is far from achieving its goal of creating a geopolitical union in South Asia.
SAARC has eight member states: Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Maldives. It also has another eight observer states, one of them is Myanmar, that is interested in full membership.Continue reading
The understanding and definition of terrorism varies worldwide. Some countries label dissenting groups as terrorists and curb their human rights in the name of fighting terrorism. Here is a list of around a dozen institutional names that come in the literature related to the global fight against terrorism and organised crime.Continue reading