Fabian speaks on Overseas Development

Resources and Development - Fabian discusses the global perspective

On Wednesday 21st September 2011, Fabian was invited to join the panel at a meeting organised by the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) at York University. The meeting was convened to address issues emerging from the 2011 - 2012 European Report on Development (ERD).

The meeting was chaired by Dr Alison Evans, Director of the Oveseas Development Institute and other panel members included Dr Dirk Willem te Velde (ODI and ERD Team Leader), Dr Antonio Saide (Government of Mozambique) and Dr Jan Paehler (European Commission). Fabian was able to contribute the perspective from the UK legislature.

The background to the issues discussed is that by 2030 demand for food, water and energy is expected to rise by 30-40%. Population growth, together with a growing middle class in emerging and developing nations, will put worldwide food production and security under extreme pressure. In the context of increasing resource scarcity and climate change, effective natural resources management is ripe for a major development policy discussion.

In contributing to the debate, Fabian was keen to stress a number of key points from the UK perspective:

  • Increasing trade is ten times more effective than giving aid in terms of helping grow the economy and viability of developing nations.
  • Greater justice for nations in being able to access world markets is of vital importance and there is no moral or economic case for trade protectionism that denies access to markets for producers.
  • The threats to long term viability that we face from the growing world demand for energy, water, minerals and land can only be met by cooperative development. Dire shortages in populous regions of the world will threaten world peace in the long term unless cooperative development can occur.
  • The pressing need in many areas is water - as is the case currently in the Horn of Africa and Fabian specifically called for a World Water Organisation to be created.