Development Crossing

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Sustainability

According to International Food Policy Research Institute IFPRI, of the world’s 34 most food-insecure countries, 22 had average annual growth rates ranging from 5 to 16 percent between 2004 and 2006.Developing economies in Asia, especially China and India, continues to show strong sustained growth. Real GDP in the region increased by nine percent per annum between 2004 and 2006. Sub-Saharan Africa also experienced rapid economic growth of about six percent in the same period. However, many of these countries with strong growth rates have high incidences and prevalence of hunger.

 

At the same time, food aid is shrinking. Global price increases has also affected the availability of food aid. Food aid now represents less than seven percent of global official development assistance and less than 0.4 percent of total world food production. Food aid flows, have been declining and have reached their lowest level since 1973. In 2006, food aid was 40 percent lower than in 2000 (WFP 2007). Emergency aid continues to constitute the largest portion of food aid. Faced with shrinking resources, food aid is increasingly targeted to fewer countries—mainly in Sub-Saharan Africa—and to specific beneficiary groups.

 

Where does that leave the poor in the developing economics? IFPRI research has shown that 160 million people live in ultra poverty on less than 50 cents a day (Ahmed et al. 2007).Many of those who are the poorest and hungriest today will still be poor and hungry in 2015, the target year of the Millennium Development Goals.

 

Unless we address hunger, the most fundamental of human needs, high levels of economic growth means little. As a society, do we recognize it?

 

For further such discussions visit http://www.csopartners.org.in/blog

 

- Ipsita Basu

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Well, it is sad to belong to most of the "160 million people live in ultra poverty on less than 50 cents a day" are in Sub-Saharan Africa, where a very big agricultural growth potential are located. So, why the so called Global Powers are genuinely pushing SSA to utilize their potential. Practically, these is the place of fertile extensive land, huge water resources, suitable agro-climate, year round solar energy, heart of tropical rain-forest, multitude of human workforce, etc. Why always unsustainable Aid? why not they teach us how to fish? why MDG is rather focusing on proper 'fishing' technology transfer? Why not, such global powers including WB, IMF, UNCDF stand for such Holistic/ Transformational development in the region. Then, they will see whether "many of those who are the poorest and hungriest today may still be poorer and hungriest in 2015", or are the richest and exporting to those who assisted them in their time of need.
Thanks Belete. Well, aid in itself is a hugely political issue. So are the reasons why people remain hungry in countries that boast of impressive growth figures. There is enough food to feed the world, however, there is little food justice. One of reasons why hunger persists is that food is produced in large quantities in the developed countries due to the subsisdies enjoyed. These are then dumped on the markets of the poor countries, undercutting local production. This has been the case in so many African nations where the activists say that they DO NOT need food aid- they need better transport facilities, better storage capacities. However, there is little investment in these. The debate gets murkier when you investigate the relationship between the aid agencies, the government of the rich countries and the Trans National Companies.
Also, really there is so much to learn from within our own traditions, the external models are more often than not unsuitable...

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