Chinese state media releases animated propaganda video mocking US coronavirus response

https://youtu.be/bK3cIoXccr8

Leia a matéria completa em: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-05-01/china-state-media-propaganda-video-mock-us-coronavirus/12204836

The IMF Approves Policy Reforms and Funding Package to Better Support the Recovery of Low Income Countries From the Pandemic

The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved on July 14, 2021 a set of reforms to the Fund’s concessional lending facilities to better support Low Income Countries’ (LICs) during the pandemic and the recovery. The Executive Board also approved an associated funding strategy to support the long-term sustainability of the Poverty Reduction and Growth Trust (PRGT). These reforms are set to ensure that the Fund has the capacity to respond flexibly to LICs’ needs over the medium term while continuing to provide concessional loans at zero interest rates.

Fund lending to LICs increased dramatically in 2020—an eightfold increase from average lending levels in 2017–2019—and is projected to continue at elevated levels for several years, as LICs seek financial assistance to help them respond to and recover from the pandemic. The bulk of future financial assistance is expected to be provided through multi-year lending arrangements—a shift from 2020, when most assistance was provided through the Fund’s emergency financing facilities.

The centerpiece of the approved policy reforms is a 45 percent increase in the normal limits on access to concessional financing, coupled with the elimination of limits on access to the poorest countries provided their economic programs meet the requirements for obtaining above-normal access. These higher access limits will allow provision of more concessional support to countries with large balance of payments needs that are implementing strong economic programs to restore inclusive growth, while maintaining sustainable debt positions.

To support concessional financing to LICs through the PRGT, grant resources are needed to cover the costs associated with providing zero-interest lending. In 2019, the PRGT was assessed to have sufficient resources to finance interest subsidies on the Fund’s concessional lending on a self-sustaining basis over the long term. However, the volume of pandemic-linked lending—already provided or expected to be provided in the next few years—far exceeds what had been anticipated or previously recorded, creating a sizable shortfall in the necessary resources.

The first stage of a two-stage funding strategy to strengthen PRGT finances would seek to raise SDR 2.8 billion in subsidy resources (to support zero interest rates), relying on a combination of Fund internal resources and voluntary contributions raised from the Fund’s economically stronger members. A further SDR 12.6 billion in PRGT loan resources would also need to be mobilized, which could be facilitated by the “channeling” of existing and new SDRs. The second stage, set for 2024–25, would seek a lasting solution to the financing of the Fund concessional lending model, informed by an updated assessment of likely demand for Fund financing from LICs.

Leia a notícia na íntegra em: https://www.imf.org/en/News/Articles/2021/07/22/pr21222-imf-approves-policy-reforms-funding-package-support-low-income-countries-from-pandemic

Olimpíada de Tóquio: O desafio de dar vida aos jogos sob ameaça da covid-19

Policiais ao lado do símbolo da Olimpíada
REUTERS
Olimpíada de Tóquio foi adiada em um ano por causa da pandemia

“Nem sabia que ia começar”. O comentário da japonesa Erina Shirahama sobre a Tóquio-2020 revela um sentimento comum à maioria dos japoneses que, até minutos antes da abertura oficial dos Jogos Olímpicos, acreditavam que eles não deveriam acontecer.

Adiado por um ano e imerso em um clima de incerteza, desconforto e medo, o megaevento apaixonante, da integração e que exaltaria a resiliência nipônica, virou promessa que se desfez ao longo dos anos desde quando o Japão conquistou o direito de sediar sua segunda olimpíada em 57 anos.

As competições da Tóquio-2020 iniciaram sem muito destaque, dois dias antes da cerimônia que será realizada nesta sexta-feira à noite (horário local), sem extravagância, como quase tudo o que tem ocorrido no atual cenário de pandemia.

O novo Estádio Nacional Olímpico, construído para abrigar 68 mil espectadores e ao custo de US$ 1 bilhão, deverá receber para a cerimônia de abertura menos de mil pessoas, incluídos 15 líderes globais.

Segundo a mídia japonesa, entre os ausentes estará o ex-premiê Shinzo Abe, lembrado por muitos brasileiros pelo cosplay que fez do personagem de videogame Super Mario na Rio 2016 para divulgar as Olimpíadas de Tóquio.

Abe promoveu a campanha olímpica anunciando o renascimento do país após um longo período de estagnação econômica, prometendo os Jogos da Reconstrução uma década depois do terremoto seguido de tsunami e acidente nuclear de Fukushima.

Diante da pandemia e apostando no fim da crise sanitária em um ano, ele decidiu adiar a Tokyo 2020 para o verão deste ano – e logo depois precisou renunciar ao cargo devido a problemas de saúde.

A pandemia continua, mas os Jogos começaram. E poucas pessoas perceberam isso, possivelmente pela discrição com que o tema olímpico tem aparecido na imprensa.

A corrida de revezamento da tocha pelas 47 províncias japonesas também perdeu força ao longo do percurso, e em muitos lugares a população foi desconvidada a assistir a passagem dos corredores pela cidade para evitar o contágio pelo coronavírus.

Com o cancelamento dos eventos que costumam acompanhar uma Olimpíada, como festas de confraternização e exibição pública, o torcedor esporádico de quatro anos não encontra motivação para entrar no clima olímpico. Ele também está banido de assistir às competições, com rara exceção, como a cidade de Sendai (Ibaraki) que conseguiu aprovar a presença de espectadores.

No primeiro dia aberto ao público, a arquibancada ficou menos ocupada do que poderia. A goleada brasileira por 5 a 0 sobre a China na partida de futebol feminino, disputada dia 21, foi assistida presencialmente por 3 mil pessoas, metade das 6 mil que tinham ingresso para entrar no estádio Miyagi.

Com capacidade para 49 mil pessoas, o estádio poderá receber público nos dez jogos de futebol masculino e feminino programados para o local até dia 31 de julho.

Desses, apenas as partidas dos dias 28 (jogos do masculino) e 31 (quartas-de-final do masculino) tiveram 10 mil ingressos liberados (máximo permitido por local).

Os organizadores não estão confiantes de que a maioria dos sorteados vá usufruir do direito de pertencer ao seleto grupo de torcedores de uma Olimpíada quase sem público.

O medo dos japoneses de se contaminar com o coronavírus parece maior do que a vontade de participar de um evento olímpico em casa.

Tóquio encontra-se em estado de emergência que vai até 22 de agosto, e registrou na véspera da abertura dos Jogos, mais 1.979 casos de Covid-19. Esta é a primeira vez que a contagem diária chega a 1.900 em cerca de seis meses, e não vai demorar muito para ultrapassar o recorde histórico de 2.520 registrado em 7 de janeiro.

O conselheiro médico do governo sobre a Covid-19, Shigeru Omi, estimou recentemente que já na primeira semana de agosto Tóquio deverá atingir a média diária de 3.000 casos.

A lentidão na campanha de vacinação aumenta o medo e esfria ainda mais a temperatura das Olimpíadas.

O Japão enfrenta sua quinta onda de Covid-19 e tem índice de cobertura vacinal baixo em comparação com outros países desenvolvidos: 35,07% da população tomou a primeira dose e 23,11% também a segunda, de acordo com dados oficiais do dia 20.

Tudo isso tem servido como argumento para vários grupos anti-olimpíadas pedirem o cancelamento dos Jogos, mesmo que seja no minuto final.

Leia a notícia completa em: https://www.bbc.com/portuguese/internacional-57937855

Liverpool stripped of Unesco World Heritage status

Liverpool has been stripped of its World Heritage status after a UN committee found developments threatened the value of the city’s waterfront.

The decision was made following a secret ballot by the Unesco committee at a meeting in China.

Unesco had said that the developments, including the planned new Everton FC stadium, had resulted in a “serious deterioration” of the historic site.

The decision was described as “incomprehensible” by the city’s mayor.

“Our World Heritage site has never been in better condition having benefitted from hundreds of millions of pounds of investment across dozens of listed buildings and the public realm,” Joanne Anderson said.

She said she would work with the government to examine whether the city could appeal against the decision, which comes “a decade after Unesco last visited the city to see it with their own eyes”.

Liverpool City Region Mayor Steve Rotheram said the decision was “a retrograde step that does not reflect the reality of what is happening on the ground”.

“Places like Liverpool should not be faced with the binary choice between maintaining heritage status or regenerating left-behind communities and the wealth of jobs and opportunities that come with it,” he said.

Labour’s Kim Johnson, MP for Liverpool Riverside, said she remained “proud of my city and what we’ve done”.

“People come here because it’s amazing city and, while I’m disappointed, as a city we are resilient and we will always fight back.”

Artist's impression
image captionAn artist’s impression of Everton’s new stadium, which is being built at Bramley Moore Dock

The government said it was “extremely disappointed” and believes Liverpool still deserves its heritage status “given the significant role the historic docks and the wider city have played throughout history”.

Liverpool becomes only the third site to lose its World Heritage status since the list began in 1978, the other two being Oman’s Arabian Oryx Sanctuary in 2007 and the Dresden Elbe Valley in Germany in 2009.

Announcing the decision, the committee chairman said 20 votes had been cast – with 13 in favour of deleting the city, five against the proposal and two ballot papers being invalid.

Liverpool’s Liberal Democrat leader Richard Kemp said it was a “day of shame” for the city, adding that it would “without a doubt, affect our tourism and inward investment”.

The city was awarded the much-coveted title in 2004 in recognition of its historical and architectural impact, joining places including the Taj Mahal, Egypt’s Pyramids and Canterbury Cathedral.

It recognised its history as a major trading centre during the British Empire and its architectural landmarks.

However, a report in June by the World Heritage Committee said developments on the city’s waterfront had resulted in “irreversible loss of attributes”.

It cited the Liverpool Waters project and Everton’s new stadium, which is being built at Bramley Moore Dock.

Leia a matéria completa em: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-merseyside-57879475

World Bank Group’s $157 Billion Pandemic Surge Is Largest Crisis Response in Its History

In response to COVID-19 severely damaging the lives and livelihoods of millions of people in developing countries, the World Bank Group deployed over $157 billion to fight the pandemic’s health, economic, and social impacts over the last 15 months (April 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021). This is the largest crisis response of any such period in the Bank Group’s history and represents an increase of more than 60% over the 15-month period prior to the pandemic. Bank Group commitments and mobilizations in fiscal year 2021 (FY21) alone (July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021) amounted to almost $110 billion (or $84 billion excluding mobilization, short-term financing, and recipient-executed trust funds).

Since the start of the pandemic, the Bank Group supported countries to address the health emergency, strengthen health systems, protect the poor and vulnerable, support businesses, create jobs and jump start a green, resilient, and inclusive recovery.

“Since the start of the pandemic, the World Bank Group has committed or mobilized a record $157 billion in new financing, an unprecedented level of support for an unprecedented crisis,” said World Bank Group President David Malpass. “We will continue to provide critical assistance to developing countries through this ongoing pandemic to help achieve a more broad-based economic recovery. The Bank Group has proven to be a rapid, innovative, and effective platform to support developing countries as they respond to the pandemic and strengthen resilience for future shocks. But we must do more still. I remain deeply concerned about limited availability of vaccines for developing countries, which are critical to save lives and livelihoods.”

World Bank Group Commitments(in U.S. billions)
World Bank GroupQ4-FY20FY21*15-mo ending June 21*
IBRD15.130.545.6
IDA17.236.153.3
IFC11.231.542.7
 Long-term finance (own account)4.9 12.517.4
    Mobilization4.110.814.9
    Short-term finance2.28.210.4
MIGA2.45.27.6
Recipient-executed trust funds  (RETF)1.56.47.9
TOTAL (excluding short-term finance, mobilization, and RETF)39.684.3123.9
TOTAL (including short-term finance, mobilization and RETF)47.4109.7157.1
 *Preliminary and unaudited numbers as of July 14.

In the 15 months ending June 30, 2021, the Bank Group stretched its balance sheets, accelerated leveraging and disbursements, and front-loaded resources. Support to countries from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) totaled $45.6 billion – including drawing down IBRD’s $10 billion crisis buffer in addition to Board-approved sustainable annual lending limits. Grants and zero or low-interest loans to the world’s poorest countries from the International Development Association (IDA) amounted to $53.3 billion. To meet increased financing needs, the World Bank fully used all remaining IDA18 resources in FY20 and frontloaded about half of all the three-year envelope of IDA19 resources in FY21. In February 2021, IDA donor and borrower country representatives agreed to advance IDA20 by 12 months to enable continued surge financing in the coming years.

In addition, over the same 15 months, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Bank Group’s private sector development arm, reached a record high of $42.7 billion in financing, including short-term finance ($10.4 billion) and mobilization ($14.9 billion), 37% of which was in low-income and fragile and conflict-affected states. IFC provided liquidity for businesses to remain in operation, while ramping up investments in companies on the frontlines of the pandemic response. To address the COVID-induced increase in the trade gap, IFC has expanded its trade and supply chain finance activities. IFC’s “Upstream” work continues to create the conditions to attract much-needed private investment to some of the world’s most difficult places and preparing the ground for a faster private sector recovery.

Despite a challenging year for borrowers and financial markets, IDA doubled the amount it raised last fiscal year from investors, reaching almost $10 billion. IBRD raised $68 billion, by mobilizing financing from investors around the globe. IBRD and IDA, both rated AAA/Aaa, raised awareness for a variety of development themes to successfully mobilize finance for sustainable development. The year also included innovations such as a unique $100 million five-year bond issued by IBRD to support the global response to COVID-19 through UNICEF. IFC, also rated AAA/Aaa, issued close to $13 billion in bonds for private sector development and job creation in emerging markets.

The Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), whose mandate is to drive impactful foreign direct investment to developing countries, issued $7.6 billion in new guarantees over the same 15-month period since the onset of the pandemic, of which 19% supported projects in IDA countries and fragile settings.

In FY21, the World Bank Group’s climate finance totaled over $26 billion, it’s largest year of climate finance ever (25% above FY20, which was itself also a record). The new Climate Change Action Plan for 2021-2025 aims to integrate climate and development goals, and commits 35% of Bank Group financing to climate, on average, over the next five years, with at least 50% of World Bank climate finance supporting adaptation. In the same time frame, the Bank Group will align financing with the goals of the Paris Agreement, while helping client countries meet their Paris commitments, including supporting and implementation of development of their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and Long-Term Strategies.

Fonte: https://www.worldbank.org/en/news/press-release/2021/07/19/world-bank-group-s-157-billion-pandemic-surge-is-largest-crisis-response-in-its-history

Relatório para metas da ONU para 2030 aponta retrocessos na educação

Relatório Luz recomenda regulamentação e implementação do Custo Aluno-Qualidade (CAQ) para investimento adequado.

relatório
(Foto: ONU)

Monitoramento de grupo de organizações da sociedade civil mostra retrocessos na maioria das metas estipuladas na Agenda 2030, acordo de países coordenado pela ONU para o desenvolvimento sustentável. 

Das 11 metas do Relatório Luz 2021 para a educação (veja todas ao final do texto), 8 delas representam retrocesso. Outras duas são ameaças e outra está estagnada. 

ACESSE O RELATÓRIO LUZ 2021

As metas compõem o ODS 4 – Objetivo de Desenvolvimento Sustentável que prevê a cada país “assegurar a educação inclusiva, equitativa e de qualidade e promover oportunidades de aprendizagem ao longo da vida para todas e todos.” 

Considerando todos os ODSs (17 objetivos), mais de 80% das metas estão em ritmo de descumprimento. Foi realizada audiência pública na Câmara dos Deputados para a exposição das evidências e discussão com parlamentares.

Os retrocessos no ODS sobre educação se dão em acesso e permanência de todas as etapas de ensino na escola, infraestrutura insuficiente, promoção de políticas pautadas nos direitos humanos e diversidades, entre outros. “O descumprimento do Plano Nacional de Educação, pela falta de investimentos e de centralidade de tal política no sistema educacional são o principal fator para o descumprimento também das metas do ODS 4. Se não cumprirmos com a legislação brasileira, não cumpriremos com a Agenda 2030; e a legislação nacional é clara: o desenvolvimento deve servir à garantia dos direitos”, afirmou Andressa Pellanda, coordenadora-geral da Campanha Nacional pelo Direito à Educação, entidade que integra o GT da Agenda 2030 e que coordenou o capítulo do relatório dedicado à educação.

A exclusão escolar (5,1 milhões de crianças e adolescentes sem acesso à educação em novembro de 2020, de acordo com a PNAD Covid-19 do IBGE) é um dos destaques negativos do relatório, que ressalta a gravidade das desigualdades educacionais existentes no Brasil. Situação essa que se agrava no contexto de pandemia e quando há um recorte por raça e gênero.  

Políticas reacionárias do governo Bolsonaro reforçam a estagnação nos índices de analfabetismo e os retrocessos em programas que vão na contramão da promoção da gestão democrática escolar e de perspectivas inclusivas. 

No esteio do negacionismo do governo federal, o Relatório Luz 2021 dispõe como sua primeira recomendação a suspensão da Emenda Constitucional 95/2016 (Teto de Gastos) – medida que congela despesas primárias no orçamento federal e atinge negativamente as áreas sociais, como a educação.   

“Apesar dessa realidade em 2020, o orçamento efetivamente pago para investimentos em infraestrutura para a educação básica foi de apenas R$ 76,5 milhões. A Lei Orçamentária Anual 2021 foi aprovada no Congresso Nacional com 27% de cortes para a área da educação e tendo sofrido o maior entre todos os bloqueios: R$ 2,7 bilhões. A vitória da comunidade educacional com a aprovação do novo Fundo Nacional de Manutenção e Desenvolvimento da Educação Básica e Valorização dos Profissionais da Educação (Fundeb) com garantia dos parâmetros do Custo Aluno-Qualidade (CAQ) tem sido impactada pela imposição de cortes e de orçamentos cada vez mais enxutos para a educação. O Fundeb com CAQ – parte das recomendações do Relatório Luz 2020 – garantiria, em média, R$ 7.200 anuais por matrícula aos estados e municípios. Com os novos contingenciamentos, este será um dos pontos centrais a avaliar no Relatório de 2022”, aponta o documento.

O documento também recomenda a retomada da centralidade de implementação e seguimento do Plano Nacional de Educação 2014-2024 – que também apresenta retrocessos e tendência generalizada de descumprimento de metas há anos. 

Leia a notícia completa em: https://diplomatique.org.br/relatorio-para-metas-da-onu-2030-aponta-retrocessos-na-educacao/

When will China overtake the US to become the world’s biggest economy

When will China overtake the United States to become the world’s biggest economy? Few questions are more consequential, whether it is for executives wondering where long-term profits will come from, investors weighing the US dollar’s status as global reserve currency, or generals strategising over geopolitical flashpoints.

In Beijing, where they have just been celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party, leaders are doing their best to present the baton-change as imminent and inevitable.

“The Chinese nation,” President Xi Jinping said last week, “is marching towards a great rejuvenation at an unstoppable pace.”

Early in the coronavirus crisis, when China managed to control infections and maintain growth even as the US suffered hundreds of thousands of deaths and a crunching recession, many were inclined to agree. More recently, an unexpectedly fast US recovery has illustrated just how much uncertainty remains around the timing of the transition – and even whether it will happen at all.

“The reason I haven’t bought three Rolls Royces is not because the government wouldn’t let me” Chinese netizen

If Xi delivers on growth-boosting reforms, and his US counterpart President Joe Biden is unable to push through his proposals for renewing infrastructure and expanding the workforce, forecasts from Bloomberg Economics suggest China could grab the top spot – held by the US for well over a century – as soon as 2031.

But that outcome is far from guaranteed. China’s reform agenda is already languishing, tariffs and other trade curbs are disrupting access to global markets and advanced technologies, and coronavirus stimulus has lifted debt to record levels.

The nightmare scenario for Xi is that China could follow the same trajectory as Japan, also touted as a potential challenger to the US before it crashed three decades ago. A combination of reform failure, international isolation and financial crisis could halt China before it reaches the top.

Another possibility – enticing to the sceptics – is that if China’s official gross domestic product (GDP) data is exaggerated, the gap between the world’s biggest and second biggest economies may be larger than it appears, and closing at a slower pace.NEWKNOWLEDGEHow does China’s economy impact the world?Get the full picture

Over the long haul, three factors determine an economy’s growth rate. The first is the size of the workforce. The second is the capital stock – everything from factories to transport infrastructure to communication networks. Finally there is productivity, or how effectively those first two can be combined.

In each of these areas, China faces an uncertain future.Start with the workforce. The maths is straightforward – more workers means more growth, and fewer workers means less. Here lies China’s first challenge.

Leia a matéria completa em: https://www.scmp.com/economy/china-economy/article/3140038/when-will-china-overtake-us-become-worlds-biggest-economy