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From theThe World Bank Group

Global Economic Prospects and the Developing Countries (GEPDC):

Volume 6 - January 2013

Four years after the onset of the global financial crisis, the world economy remains fragile and growth in high-income countries is weak. Developing countries need to focus on raising the growth potential of their economies, while strengthening buffers to deal with risks from the Euro Area and fiscal policy in the United States, says the World Bank in the newly-released Global Economic Prospects (GEP) report.

2012 Volume 5 -  June 2012

Developing countries should prepare for a long period of volatility in the global economy by re-emphasizing medium-term development strategies, while preparing for tougher times, says the World Bank in the newly-released Global Economic Prospects (GEP), June 2012.
A resurgence of tensions in high-income Europe has eroded the gains made during the first four months of this year, which saw a rebound in economic activity in both developing and advanced countries and an easing of risk aversion among investors. Since May 1st, increased market jitters have spread. Developing and high-income country stock markets have lost some 7 percent, giving up two-thirds of the gains generated over the preceding four months. Most industrial commodity prices are down, with crude and copper prices down by 19 and 14 percent, respectively, while developing country currencies have lost value against the US dollar, as international capital fled to safe-haven assets, such as German and U.S. government bonds.

2012 Volume 4 - January 2012 
Uncertainties and Vulnerabilities

Developing countries should prepare for further downside risks, as Euro Area debt problems and weakening growth in several big emerging economies are dimming global growth prospects, says the World Bank in the newly-released Global Economic Prospects (GEP) 2012.
The Bank has lowered its growth forecast for 2012 to 5.4 percent for developing countries and 1.4 percent for high-income countries (-0.3 percent for the Euro Area), down from its June estimates of 6.2 and 2.7 percent (1.9 percent for the Euro Area), respectively. Global growth is now projected at 2.5 and 3.1 [1] percent for 2012 and 2013, respectively.

2011 Volume 3 - June 2011
Maintening growth amid turmoil

The financial crisis for most developing countries is over. Efforts must now focus on tackling country-specific challenges such as achieving balanced growth through structural reforms, coping with inflationary pressures, and dealing with high commodity prices.

2011 Volume 2 - January 2011
Navigating Strong Currents

This report projects slower but still solid growth in 2011 and 2012, with developing countries contributing almost half of global growth. But the recovery in some high-income and emerging Europe and Central Asian economies is tentative.

2010 Volume 1 - June 2010
Fiscal Headwinds and Recovery

Even as the world economic recovery continues to advance, it faces fresh headwinds on the road to sustainable medium term growth. The report warns that while the impact of the European debt crisis has so far been contained, it has the real potential to derail global growth.

2010 January 2010
Crisis, Finance, and Growth

The acute phase of the financial crisis has passed and a global economic recovery is under way. Moreover, the recovery is fragile and expected to slow in the second half of 2010 as the growth impact of fiscal and monetary measures wane and the current inventory cycle runs its course. Indeed, industrial production growth is already slowing (albeit from very high rates). As a result, employment growth will remain weak and unemployment is expected to remain high for many years. The overall strength of the recovery and its durability will depend on the extent to which household- and business-sector demand strengthens over the next few quarters. While the baseline scenario projects that global growth will firm to 2.7 percent in 2010 and 3.2 percent in 2011 after a 2.2 percent decline in 2009, neither a double-dip scenario, where growth slows appreciably in 2011, or a strengthening recovery can be ruled out.

Commodity markets at the crossroads
The stresses in U.S. financial markets that first emerged in the summer of 2007 transformed themselves into a full-blown global financial crisis in the fall of 2008. As the crisis intensified, the effects of financial turmoil on developing countries increased in step, as risk aversion sent spreads soaring, equity markets tumbling, exchange rates falling and capital flows into decline. In this climate, growth prospects for both high-income and developing countries have deteriorated substantially, and a movement of global growth from 2.5 percent in 2008 to 0.9 percent in 2009 appears to be in the cards.

Technology Diffusion in the Developing World
This edition of Global Economic Prospects is being released during a period of increased uncertainty following four years of record growth in developing countries. In addition to examining economic prospects over the near and longer term, it takes an in-depth look at the current level of and recent trends in technological achievement and the main factors that determine the extent to which developing countries succeed in implementing foreign technologies.
Notwithstanding the financial turmoil provoked by a reassessment of risks in the U.S. mortgage market, and despite large losses in some financial markets, exposure to asset backed securities appears to be broadly based. Losses so far have been manageable, although credit conditions have tightened. For developing economies, sovereign risk premiums have increased but remain low by historical standards. Equity values, exchange rates, and commodity prices have become more volatile, and the vulnerability of countries with large current account deficits or pegged exchange rates has become more visible.

Managing the Next Wave of Globalization
Globalization has been present since the dawn of modern humans nearly 50,000 years ago in Africa (see Wade 2006). The Roman Empire stretched from Great Britain to the Middle East nearly 2,000 years ago and 500 years ago the age of discoveries led to the expansion of European outreach to the western hemisphere and East Asia. Two distinct periods in more modern times are often cited as intensified phases of globalization—the 20–30 years before World War I and the years since World War II. Both witnessed sharp increases in trade, international migration, and flows of finance, accompanied by rapid changes in technology—electricity, trains, and steamships in the first period, and planes, containers, and telecommunications in the second. While technology was a key factor, policies were also important—such as the reductions in trade and financial barriers. This report reviews some of the key evidence of the most recent period of globalization hinting at what trends can be anticipated over the next 25 years. The report will highlight trends in four broad categories that define globalization—trade in goods and services, international migration, capital flows, and technology and information.

Economic Implications of Remittances and Migration
Migration Can Deliver Welfare Gains, Reduce Poverty, Says Global Economic Prospects 2006
WASHINGTON, November 16, 2005 — International migration can generate substantial welfare gains for migrants and their families, as well as their origin and destination countries, if policies to better manage the flow of migrants and facilitate the transfer of remittances are pursued, says the World Bank's annual Global Economic Prospects (GEP) report for 2006.
“With the number of migrants worldwide now reaching almost 200 million, their productivity and earnings are a powerful force for poverty reduction,” said François Bourguignon, World Bank Chief Economist and Senior Vice President for Development Economics.
“Remittances, in particular, are an important way out of extreme poverty for a large number of people. The challenge facing policymakers is to fully achieve the potential economic benefits of migration, while managing the associated social and political implications.”

Trade, Regionalism, and Development
Regional Trade Pacts Must Create – Not Divert – Trade to Reduce Poverty: World Bank Report Global Economic Prospects 2005 predicts highest growth in 30 years for developing countries
WASHINGTON, November 16, 2004 — With regional trade agreements (RTAs) having increased sixfold since the 1980s and now covering more than one-third of global trade, the World Bank's Global Economic Prospects 2005 advises countries concluding bilateral and regional trade pacts to keep them “open”, so as not to divert trade or cause market distortions that penalize other developing countries.

Realizing the Development Promise of the Doha Agenda
The Doha Development Agenda of the Fourth Ministerial Conference of the WTO opened many contentious and important questions. Global Economic Prospects 2004: Realizing the Development Promise of the Doha Agenda analyzes the most critical multilateral trade issues and suggests policy options that would raise living standards in developing countries and reduce global poverty.

Investing to Unlock Global Opportunities
In the face of uncertainties in the global environment, Global Economic Prospects 2003 outlines steps that can be adopted by rich and poor countries to increase growth rates and accelerate poverty reduction. Though global GDP is expected to rise by 2.5 percent in 2003 as a result of improved business health and policy stimulus in the U.S. and Europe, the chances of the world economy sliding toward recession are real. Regional variations in growth in developing countries are striking: 6.1 percent in East Asia compared to 1.8 percent in Latin America. The poverty targets are likely to be achieved by most regions, except for Africa which lags behind. 

Making Trade Work for the World's Poor

Global Economic Prospects and the Developing Countries 2002 reviews the global economic environment and its implications for the developing countries over the next decade. Realizing the promise of the new global initiatives to expand trade requires concerted effort to move development to center stage in trade policy formulation. This report is dedicated to that agenda. It begins with a review of global prospects and ways globalization links the fates of industrial and developing countries. The report then considers issues in four broad areas that are particularly important to developing countries: merchandise trade, services, transport, and intellectual property rights. A final chapter summarizes the forward-looking policy agenda, and assesses the potential impact of further global integration and more rapid growth for the standards of living in poor countries everywhere.

The global economy is likely approaching a cyclical high in 2000, while policy reforms and improvements in health and education in developing countries over the past decade have substantially increased their potential for long-term growth.  However, volatility in the global economic environment presents major risks for developing countries that could depress prospects.


Recovery from the global financial crisis has been more rapid than once forecast. Nevertheless, the aftershocks of the crisis continue to depress growth prospects for developing countries and hamper efforts to reduce poverty worldwide. This tenth annual edition of Global Economic Prospects 2000

  • analyzes the prospects for the global economy and the implications for poverty reduction
  • reports on the enormous social impact of the crisis inthe most affected countries
  • reviews progress in corporate and bank restructuring in the East Asian crisis countries
  • traces the impact of volatile commodity prices on exporters of primary commodities


Beyond Financial Crises

With surprising speed over the past 12 months, various crises have buffeted the global economy. Japan lapsed into recession. Russia ran into severe financial difficulties. Capital flows to emerging markets fell abruptly. Credit for development is shrinking amidst heightened risk aversion in global financial markets.


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