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Business associations are positioning themselves in favor of the privatization of education

Business associations in Latin America and the Caribbean are positioning themselves in favor of the privatization of education. Among the most recent examples, one can cite the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture of Panama, which is proposing the creation of private schools, on the basis that this will constitute savings for the State; and the National Chamber of Commerce and Services of Uruguay, which reported an article in which it is mentioned that legislation allowing the existence of private institutions, but free, would be the beginning of a necessary "education revolution".


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Focus: Evolution of the Caribbean Debt

Like many other countries, the Caribbean territories have struggled to emerge from the global financial crisis of 2008. These small island economies have since been posting meagre growth and a considerable debt burden, which threatens macroeconomic stability and programs aimed at social protection. As is to be generally expected, the financial crisis created an adverse impact on debt sustainability of many of the economies in the sub-region. These challenges however, did not begin with the crisis but are a reflection of more fundamental structural weaknesses in the economics of the region.


Reimagining regionalism Heterodox and Feminist Policy Proposals from Africa and the Caribbean

Reimagining Regionalism is a compilation of five policy papers that present heterodox and feminist policy proposals around fundamental questions of economic policy and sustainable development: trade, climate change, fiscal governance, agriculture, and debt. Each paper addresses separate but related policy areas fundamental to the Caribbean, the African continent, and the overlaps between them to elaborate regional specificity and analytical clarity to bolster and refine ongoing work in these contexts.


Caribbean development report: A perusal of public debt in the Caribbean and its impact on economic growth

This paper examines the genesis and evolution of debt and debt overhang in the Caribbean with individual case studies, to extract lessons and make broad recommendations with regard to appropriate mechanisms and policy measures that can be implemented to reduce the debt burden of the subregion. The econometric model utilized in the paper has shown that a one percent increase on debt to GDP ratio causes a 0.015decline in real GDP growth for the countries in the Caribbean panel, suggesting that debt has a pernicious effect on growth on Caribbean economies. What is even more worrisome was that Caribbean economies did not demonstrate the traditional non-linear (bell-shaped) effect of debt on growth, where there is a range in which a positive relation between debt and growth exists. Traditionally, as debt increases, so does economic growth, up to a point. After this maximum point is passed, the relationship turns negative, where increases in debt cause a decrease in economic growth. In contrast, using the Caribbean countries selected in the panel over the period 2000-2015, it was empirically found that, at all levels, increases in debt resulted in a decline in economic growth for Caribbean economies. It was also shown that the financial crisis negatively affected growth in the Caribbean, lending credence to the view that Caribbean economies are exceedingly vulnerable to exogenous economic shocks.

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Crisis Narratives, Debt and Development Adjustment in the Caribbean

Don Marshall presents elements of his paper “Crisis Narratives, Debt and Development Adjustment: Contemplating Caribbean Small Island States Futures.” Don, Director of the Sir Arthur Lewis Institute of Social and Economic Studies at University of the West Indies: Cave Hill, questions the hegemony of mainstream economic indicators shepherded by the “neoliberal calculus of austerity adjustments.” He explores the effects on the Caribbean and its economic governance of international financial institutions and credit rating agencies, in the context of global financialization. Considering the implications for the dual Caribbean crises of debt and climate change, Don illustrates the need for meaningful policy space to enable governments to implement their agendas for equitable development.

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