Not many years ago Kenya’s flowers were produced by hundreds of small producers, providing livelihood for thousands. Now they are produced by a handful of multinationals. Those who own the farms in Naivasha as well as middle agencies make enormous profits, but the direct producers – the wage workers – get very little.
This article seeks to explain the process leading to WTO’s Tenth Ministerial Conference (WTO MC10). The next (final article in this series) will focus on the substance of negotiations. Of course, you cannot separate the process from the substance. But conceptually and strategically it is important to understand the difference as well as the interaction.
The most significant aspect of the process is its underlying power politics.
Every year, roughly $1 trillion flows illegally out of developing and emerging economies due to crime, corruption, and tax evasion. This amount is more than these countries receive in foreign direct investment and foreign aid combined.
This week, a new report was released that highlights the latest data available on this “hot” money. Assembled by Global Financial Integrity, a research and advisory organization based in Washington, DC, the report details illicit financial flows of money from developing countries using the latest information available, which is up until the end of 2013.
The cumulative amount of this “hot money” coming out of developing countries totaled just over $7.8 trillion between 2004 and 2013. On an annual basis, it breached the $1 trillion mark each of the last three years of data available, which is good for a growth rate of 6.5% rate annually.