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International Economic Cooperation in Troubled Times: A Call for Strong Action by the G20

Uri Dadush , Axel Berger , Andreas Freytag , Simon J. Evenett , Christian von Haldenwang , Ricardo Meléndez-Ortiz , Raul Ochoa , Agustin Redonda , Karl P. Sauvant | Posted : November 26, 2018

*The recommendations put forth below have been published, both print and online, in the Financial Times

The leaders of the G20 will meet on 30 November and 1 December in Buenos Aires for their annual summit. They need to acknowledge that the last two years have been characterized by strong headwinds for the world economy. This time, however, it is not a mixture of poor macroeconomic policies and bad business decisions – as in 2008 when they met in Washington for their first summit – that endangers the well-being of billions of citizens around the globe. This time the threat stems from deliberate political decisions, in particular on trade

What was discussed at the Climate Change Workshop in Paris?

Maha Skah | Posted : November 15, 2018

The workshop “Coping with Climate Change” gathered experts, policy-makers and researchers to discuss recent econometric work on decoupling greenhouse gas emissions and economic growth. It explored different policies and instruments that countries and financial institutions are adopting to cope with the effects of climate change (adaptation) and to contribute to the global effort to combat climate change (mitigation). 

L’avenir du travail : quel effet d’une automatisation accrue ?

Yassine Msadfa | Posted : November 05, 2018

Il y a une dizaine d’années, le nombre et la complexité des taches que pouvaient effectuer les robots semblaient encore limités. Aujourd’hui, certains robots, munis d’une intelligence artificielle développée, réussissent à apprendre et à exceller dans des jeux de stratégie assez complexes, comme les échecs ou le jeu de GO. Le développement de la robotique, de l’intelligence artificielle et de l’automatisation, en général, s’est fait de façon relativement rapide, incitant plusieurs experts à prévoir un avenir où les hommes peineraient à trouver du travail dans le sens où le gros du travail serait fait par des machines.

Benefits and Costs of Islamic Finance

Otaviano Canuto | Posted : November 05, 2018

Islamic finance is a way of doing finance while respecting the Islamic ban on interest-based transactions and ensuring risk sharing between parties in all operations. Contracts are supposed to rule out features that would make them akin to gambling or “making money from money.” Furthermore, engagements in businesses considered immoral or ethically problematic are not allowed.

Energy Security Value Chain: A New Challenge for China?

Bouchra Rahmouni | Posted : October 19, 2018

There are various definitions of Energy Security (ES) and numerous ways of understanding the concept. For this blog’s purpose, we will choose the familiar understanding of the latter as put forward by the George W. Bush Administration, i.e. it represents a situation where four characteristics are met, an energy supply that is:
(1) Reliable (2) affordable (3) environmentally sound and (4) accessible. 

Energy in Africa: Challenges and Opportunities

Manfred Hafner , Simone Tagliapietra , Lucia de Strasser | Posted : October 04, 2018

This blog post summarizes the key findings of the new book Energy in Africa: Challenges and Opportunities, co-authored by Manfred Hafner, Simone Tagliapietra and Lucia de Strasser of the Italian think-tank, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei. The book, published by Springer, is freely available online.

Space and Debris

Helmut Sorge | Posted : October 03, 2018


January 28, 1986. It was just another day in the whirlpool of news and speculations of a new Foreign Correspondent to be assigned to the White House. Shivering on his way to the most important political center of the Western World, resisting arctic cold and snow on the way to work, hardly ever seeing the President himself. Instead, he found himself on this fateful day in a rendez-vous with Tom Foley, majority leader in the House of Representatives, a classic and classy democrat, honest and liberal, stamped by dignity and selected language and never close to the gutter as some politicians in the US capital these days.

Infrastructure: Can Africa learn from Morocco?

Uri Dadush | Posted : September 21, 2018

This blog is based on remarks delivered at the Think-Tank Summit in Buenos Aires on 18 September 2018 held under the G-20’s Argentine Presidency. 

Africa has an enormous infrastructure gap that impedes its development. The Compact with Africa (CwA) is an international policy initiative sponsored under the German presidency of the G-20 in 2017 designed to bridge that gap. Intended to draw in the private sector in developing Africa’s infrastructure through a combination of Private-Public Partnerships (PPP) and blended finance, the CwA involves the public sector of a dozen African countries have volunteered to join the initiative, and international organizations such as the African Development Bank and various donor agencies. Though the initiative has built up momentum among policy-makers since its launch, the participation of the private sector has been noticeably weak.