UN DESA | DPAD | Development Policy Analysis Division
8 February 2016
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 87.
- Commodity price rout dampens regional growth prospects
- China emphasized the need to improve productivity through policies on the supply side of the economy
- Bank of Japan adopts a negative interest rate
5 February 2016
Prospects of Graduation from the LDC Category
The Committee for Development Policy (CDP) Secretariat is organizing an event on Meeting the Istanbul Programme of Action (IPoA) Targets: Prospects of Graduation from the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) Category on Thursday, 11 February at 1:15 pm in Conference Room 11. Roland Mollerus and Matthias Bruckner will explain the unique role of the CDP in identifying LDCs and will take stock of the progress towards the IPoA target of enabling half the LDCs to meet the graduation criteria by 2020. An interactive discussion with participants will clarify possible questions on the graduation criteria and the triennial reviews.
1 February 2016
Continued efforts in building energy planning capacity in Costa Rica
The process of supporting countries in their transition from MDG-based development strategies to broader sustainable development strategies through modelling-based policy analyses has continued in Costa Rica with the second training in the use of the Long-Range Energy Alternatives Planning (LEAP). The training was organized in San Jose, on 25-29 of January, at the premises of the Ministry of Planning and Economic Policy. It targeted government experts from institutions doing energy planning.
As a result of the training, participants now possess the skills to use the LEAP system with Costa Rican data. The workshop has paved the way for trainees to initiate simulations whose results will support the preparation of policy notes, covering a number of energy-related issues, especially transport.
27 January 2016
Report on the Project LINK Meeting
A UN/DESA Expert Group Meeting on the World Economy, also known as the Project LINK Meeting, was held in New York on 21-23 October 2015. A wide range of experts from academia, economic research institutions and international economic organizations as well as United Nations colleagues from the regional commissions participated in the meeting to discuss the current state of the world economy, regional outlook, world commodity markets and global modelling and econometrics.
25 January 2016
Handbook on the LDC Category, French
The second edition of the Handbook on the Least Developed Country Category: Inclusion, Graduation and Special Support Measures is now available in French. The LDC Handbook provides comprehensive information on the least developed country (LDC) category, including a description of procedures and methodologies used in the identification of these countries, and the support measures associated with it.
20 January 2016
World Economic Situation and Prospects 2016
The World Economic Situation and Prospects 2016, UN/DESA’s flagship report on the state of the world economy, was launched today in New York. The report projects a modest improvement for the world economy in 2016/17 as a number of cyclical and structural headwinds persist. Global growth is estimated at a mere 2.4 per cent in 2015 and is forecast to grow by 2.9 per cent in 2016 and 3.2 per cent in 2017.
In his address to the ECOSOC Bureau, ASG Lenni Montiel said, “The WESP 2016 underscores that global growth faltered last year and only a very modest improvement is expected in 2016 and 2017. Clearly, the projected growth of the global economy will impact efforts to pursue sustainable development in all three areas - economic, social and environmental… Given the weak growth prospects, we need to step up our efforts to boost growth and job creation around the world. Let us not forget that the fastest progress towards achieving the MDGs was during 1995-2007, when the world economy registered robust and balanced growth.”
Notwithstanding weak growth prospects, the WESP 2016 highlights some positive trends in environmental sustainability. Global energy-related carbon emissions experienced no growth in 2014 for the first time in 20 years, with the exception of 2009 when the global economy contracted, suggesting that a delinking of economic growth and carbon emission growth is possible with appropriate policies and adequate investment.
11 January 2016
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 86.
- Limited global financial market reaction to Fed's interest rate move
- IMF includes Chinese renminbi in the SDR basket
- Monetary tightening in Western Asia and Latin America in response to Fed's first rate hike in seven years
10 December 2015
World Economic Situation and Prospects 2016: Global Economic Outlook
The Global economic outlook, Chapter 1 of the World Economic Situation and Prospects 2016, was pre-released today in New York in a press briefing held by ASG for Economic Development, Lenni Montiel, and Chief of the Economic Monitoring Unit of DPAD/DESA, Hamid Rashid. The report projects a modest improvement for the world economy in 2016/17 as a number of cyclical and structural headwinds persist. Global growth is estimated at a mere 2.4 per cent in 2015 and is forecast to grow by 2.9 per cent in 2016 and 3.2 per cent in 2017.
14 December 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 85.
- According to chapter one of the World Economic Situation and Prospects 2016, only a modest improvement in the world economy is projected for the next two years
- Recessions in the Russian Federation and Ukraine may have reached a turning point
- Unemployment on the rise in a number of South American economies
24 November 2015
UN/DESA transfers modelling tools that inform energy planning in Bolivia
As part of the Capacity Development Project "Supporting the Design of Sustainable Development Policies with Policy Modelling Tools 2014-2015" which will conclude at the end of this year, UN/DESA supported the Government of Bolivia in building capacity to use integrated modeling systems for energy planning. The project included workshops which simulated scenarios using the integrated energy system called OSeMOSYS, the ownership of which has been transferred by UN/DESA to the Government in the framework of said project. This valuable tool enabled the Economic and Social Policy Analysis Unit (UDAPE) of the Ministry of Development Planning to contribute analysis on the development of the energy sector and its contribution to climate change to Bolivia's Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC). On 12 October 2015, UNFCCC formally received Bolivia's INDC. The INDC comes in advance of a new universal climate change agreement which will be reached at the ongoing UN climate conference in Paris. The Paris agreement will come into effect in 2020, empowering all countries to act to prevent average global temperatures rising above 2 degrees Celsius.
19 November 2015
The Committee for Development Policy (CDP) launched today the second edition of the Handbook on the Least Developed Country Category: Inclusion, Graduation and Special Support Measures at a briefing in New York. The Handbook contains a detailed description of the procedures and methodologies used by the CDP in the identification of least developed countries (LDCs), as well as an overview of the international support measures associated with the LDC category. As a supplement to the Handbook, the LDC 2015 Country Snapshots was also presented at the briefing. The Country Snapshots is a compilation of one-page profiles for each of the 48 countries classified as LDCs in 2015 and illustrates the gaps in progress towards the LDC graduation thresholds for each country.
9 November 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 84.
- The United States of America avoids a fiscal stand-off
- Emerging economies brace for net capital outflows for the first time in many years
- Third quarter growth in China beats expectations
1 November 2015
Building energy planning capacity in Costa Rica
In the process of supporting countries in their transition from MDG-based development strategies to broader sustainable development strategies through modelling-based policy analyses, DPAD trained government experts and policy analysts in the use of the Long-Range Energy Alternatives Planning (LEAP) system. The training was organized in San Jose, Costa Rica, on 26-30 October, at the premises of the Ministry of Planning and Economic Policy. The Minister of Planning, H.E. Olga Marta Sanchez (pictured above), provided concluding remarks and thanked UN-DESA for the capacity building.
29 October 2015
New series on Development Issues
The Development Strategy and Policy Analysis Unit in the Development Policy and Analysis Division has launched a new briefing note series called Development Issues. The notes are intended to clarify concepts used in the analytical work of the Division, provide references to current development issues and offer a common background for development policy discussions. The first five tackle inequality, multidimensional poverty and income convergence.
27 October 2015
Handbook on the Least Developed Country Category, 2nd ed.
The second edition of the Handbook on the Least Developed Country Category: Inclusion, Graduation and Special Support Measures has been released by the Committee for Development Policy. The LDC Handbook provides comprehensive information on the least developed country (LDC) category, including a description of procedures and methodologies used in the identification of these countries, and the support measures associated with it. This revised edition of the Handbook aims at promoting a better understanding of the LDC category—the only country category officially recognized by the United Nations General Assembly—and the benefits derived from membership therein. Accordingly, the publication is intended for the use by government officials, policymakers, researchers and others interested in the particular development problems and challenges faced by the most disadvantaged developing countries.
The Handbook will be launched on 19 November 2015 at UNHQ. A French version is forthcoming.
26 October 2015
UN Photo/Christopher Herwig
Expert Group Meeting on the World Economy
The DESA Expert Group Meeting on the World Economy was held from 21-23 October 2015 at the UN Headquarters in New York. More than seventy economists from all over the world participated in discussions on the current state of the world economy, regional outlook, world commodity markets and global modelling and econometrics.
16 October 2015
Ugandan experts ready for model-based policy analysis
From 12-16 October 2015, DPAD conducted capacity development activities on economy-wide modelling to assess sustainable development policies in Uganda. This activity was organized in Entebbe, in collaboration with UNDP Uganda and the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development. Officials are now well equipped to develop dynamic scenarios of economic and energy policies, external shocks, and productivity for informing sustainable development policy making.
12 October 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 83.
- Global trade flows drops in value terms amid persistently weak commodity prices and stronger US dollar
- Budget cuts and increasing fiscal strains in many commodity-exporting developing countries
28 September 2015
Capacity development support in Paraguay
The Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN/DESA), represented by ASG for Economic Development Mr. Lenni Montiel, and the Government of the Republic of Paraguay, represented by the Minister of Planning Mr. José R. Molinas, today agreed on capacity development support that the Development Policy and Analysis Division of UN/DESA will provide for designing sustainable development policies with policy modelling tools.
21 September 2015
Global Governance and Rules for the Post-2015 Era
Global Governance and Rules for the Post-2015 Era provides a unique assessment of global rules and governance; a reflection of how global rules have been shaping development experiences and outcomes; an identification of the shortcomings; and innovative suggestions for reforming and improving them. This book reflects the outcome of research by independent development experts brought together by the United Nations Committee for Development Policy and is a timely contribution to the discussions on the UN's 20130 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Edited by José Antonio Alonso and José Antonio Ocampo.
18 September 2015
Taking Stock of the Global Partnership for Development
The 2015 Report of the MDG Gap Task Force was launched today in New York by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Wu Hongbo and UNDP Administrator Helen Clark. The Task Force was created in 2007 to monitor Millennium Development Goal 8, Global Partnership for Development, specifically its five core domains, official development assistance (ODA), market access (trade), debt sustainability, access to affordable essential medicines and access to new technologies. This year marks the last of the series of this monitoring process with a closing report tracking 15 years of progress. As has been reported, there have been significant positive developments pointing to an effective international partnership in the five domains, but several deficits in development cooperation have continuously highlighted the need for a rejuvenation of the global partnership for development.
14 September 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 82.
- Volatility soars in global financial markets
- Concerns over China's economy are mounting
- Stronger-than-expected GDP growth in the U.S., while economic growth slows in many developing countries
25 August 2015
National Sustainable Development Workshop in Geneva
On 26-28 August, UNDESA will gather researchers and government policy analysts taking part of DESA capacity development country projects, as well as experts in integrated assessments for sustainable development, in the workshop "Integrated Modelling Tools to Support National Sustainable Development and SDG Strategies". The workshop will bring together government officials from economic, energy and environment ministries from Bolivia, Brazil, Cuba, Nicaragua, and Uganda, and experts from several UN agencies and research institutions engaged in integrated methodologies such as the Water, Energy and Food Security Nexus and the Climate, Land, Energy and Water Systems model (CLEWS) among others.
12 August 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 81.
- Decline in capital inflows to emerging markets accelerates
- Sluggish investment in developed economies threatens future growth
- Greece and its creditors agree on conditions for new bailout programme
- Chinese stock markets remain volatile in July
10 August 2015
Policy modelling training in Uganda
DPAD kick-started the development of capacities on economy-wide modelling to assess sustainable development policies in Uganda. Government officials have been trained during a workshop held in Entebbe, on 10-14 August, 2015, which was organised in collaboration with UNDP Uganda and the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development.
13 July 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 80.
- Greek voters reject bailout proposal
- Several new EU members and South-Eastern European nations face risks of spillover effects from the Greek debt crisis
- India and other South Asian economies register strong economic growth
10 July 2015
UN Photo/Mark Garten
Policy modelling training completed in Nicaragua
Training activities of the project "Supporting the design of sustainable development policies with policy modelling tools" were completed for Nicaragua, in Managua, on 6-9 July 2015. Workshops were organized for training government officials in the use of an economy-wide model and an integrated energy system to assess policies for sustainable development. Trainees are now well equipped to work on a number of policy notes, covering issues of relevance for sustainable development, which will be presented to and discussed with high-level policymakers in October 2015.
06 June 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 79.
- Global economy grows at a modest pace
- Recovery in Western Europe gradually becoming more broadly based, but still fragile
- Economic growth downgraded for commodity exporters, while more diversified economies benefit from lower commodity prices
27 May 2015
UN Photo/Milton Grant
Transitioning from MDGs to SDGs in Costa Rica
A dialogue between DESA/DPAD and technical staff from the Ministry of Planning, the Ministry of Environment, Energy and Seas, the Costa Rican Institute of Electricity, and UNDP Costa Rica was held in San José, Costa Rica on 18-20 May as part of the activities related to the capacity development project Supporting developing countries in their transition from MDGs to broader Sustainable Development Strategies through modelling-based policy analysis. The discussions revolved around feasible strategies to reduce reliance on imported fossil fuels and increase transport efficiency; policies to promote more efficient uses of energy; and how these strategies and policies will impact economic growth and human development. DPAD was represented by Senior Economic Affairs Officer Marco Sanchez-Cantillo and Senior Inter-regional Adviser Eduardo Zepeda.
19 May 2015
World Economic Situation and Prospects as of mid-2015
The mid-year update of the World Economic Situation and Prospects forecasts growth of world gross product to accelerate slightly from 2.6 per cent in 2014 to 2.8 per cent in 2015—a downward revision by 0.3 percentage points from the forecast presented in the World Economic Situation and Prospects 2015 in January. In 2016, global growth is forecast to improve to 3.1 per cent. The report was launched today in New York by Pingfan Hong, Director of the Development Policy and Analysis Division (DPAD), UN/DESA; and Ingo Pitterle, Economic Affairs Officer, DPAD/DESA.
15 May 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 78.
- U.S. dollar softens against a wide range of currencies
- East Asian exports weaker than expected during the first quarter
- Labour market in Brazil starts to deteriorate, after several years of falling unemployment rates
23 April 2015
The advance unedited CDP report to ECOSOC on the 17th session of the CDP Plenary, held from 23-27 March 2015 in NY, is now available. During the session, CDP members conducted the triennial review of the list of LDCs, examined the challenges for effective accountability for sustainable development in the post-2015 era and reviewed how the new financing for development landscape could contribute to the Istanbul Programme of Action (IPoA) in the post-2015 era. Additionally, the CDP monitored the graduated and graduating countries from the LDC category and continued to refine the indicators employed for the identification of LDCs, particularly on how to further strengthen the measurement of health-related structural impediments.
21 April 2015
During the 17th session of the CDP Plenary, held from 23 - 27 March 2015 at UN headquarters in NY, CDP members conducted the triennial review of the list of LDCs, examining the eligibility for graduation and inclusion on the basis of the country's socio-economic performance vis-a-vis the LDC criteria. The data for the LDC criteria and indicators has now been released and can be viewed or downloaded on the LDC Data Retrieval page.
10 April 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 77.
- Progress in the creation of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank
- GDP growth diverges among developing economies
- Sharp currency depreciations in many emerging economies
09 April 2015
Global financial regulation: have post-crisis initiatives made a difference?
In a Development Policy Seminar held in New York yesterday, Nicolas Véron, Senior Fellow at Bruegel in Brussels and Visiting Fellow from the Peterson Institute for International Economics, argued that the effectiveness of post-crisis reforms in financial regulation in making global finance more stable is not so far proven. In his presentation, he showed that unintended consequences of the reforms are appearing gradually, even as their initial implementation is still unfinished. In his view, the G20 has established neither an adequate institutional infrastructure nor a consistent policy vision for a globally integrated financial system. This shortcoming justifies increasing concerns about economically harmful market fragmentation. One key aim, according to Véron, should be to make international regulatory bodies more representative of the rapidly-changing geography of global finance, not only in terms of their membership but also of their leadership and location.
08 April 2015
Continued capacity building in Uganda
DPAD in collaboration with UNDP and the National Planning Authority in Uganda organized a training workshop on 23-27 March, 2015, in Entebbe. This activity strengthened the Government's skills to use economy-wide simulation analyses to inform the final stage of drafting of the National Development Plan II. This was part of the continued support that DPAD is providing to Uganda's Government since 2006. Other official reports that have received input from similar capacity building exercises include the Poverty Status Report 2014 and the MDG Report for Uganda 2013.
25 March 2015
Transitioning from MDGs to SDGs: Accountability for the post-2015 era
A panel discussion organized by the Committee for Development Policy (CDP) was held on 24 March, featuring CDP Chair José Antonio Ocampo, CDP Vice Chair Sakiko Fukuda-Parr, and CDP members Stephan Klasen and Tea Petrin. The discussion centred on concrete recommendations for establishing an effective accountability framework for development in the post-2015 era. In particular, critical elements were identified on which a reformed and strengthened monitoring and accountability framework need to be built.
11 March 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 76.
- Central banks in developed and emerging economies ease monetary policy
- Agreement reached to extend Greece's bailout programme through June
- Inflation pressures increasing in CIS economies, while easing in many other emerging economies
13 February 2015
Facebook chat on the world economy
A Facebook chat was held on Thursday, 12 February, from 10:00 am to 11:30 am EST to discuss the current state of the world economy and growth prospects for 2015 and 2016. Economists from the Global Economic Monitoring Unit of UN/DESA's Development Policy and Analysis Division were on hand to answer questions from the online community about the World Economic Situation and Prospects 2015. Questions were posted at http://bit.ly/AskWESP2015 or on Twitter @UNDESA and @UNDevelopPolicy using the hashtag #AskWESP2015.
10 February 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 75.
- Major central bank policy swings in Switzerland and the euro area
- Euro area deflation sets in
- Oil exporters face increased fiscal challenges, while lower commodity prices ease inflationary pressures
9 February 2015
Development Policy Seminar: Transforming MDG growth patterns for SDGs
Pingfan Hong, Director of DPAD/DESA, will be presenting his analysis on the growth patterns of MDGs and how it needs to be transformed for the new Sustainable Development Goals this Wednesday, 11 February 2015, 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm at the United Nations Secretariat, Room S-2727FC.
19 January 2015
The World Economic Situation and Prospects 2015 forecasts global economic growth to increase marginally over the next two years at 3.1 per cent in 2015 and 3.3 per cent in 2016, compared with an estimated growth of 2.6 per cent for 2014. An expected US interest rate increase, remaining euro area fragility, a further slowdown in developing economies and geopolitical conflicts pose major concerns for the global economic outlook.
The report was launched today in Bangkok, Beirut, Geneva, Mexico and Moscow. A launch will be held in New Delhi on January 20 and Addis Ababa on January 22.
9 January 2015
Highlights of the Monthly Briefing on the World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), No. 74.
- Moderate global economic expansion in 2014, as post-crisis adjustments continued
- In 2015, developed economies to be led by a stronger U.S. economy, while downside risks remain significant in Japan and the euro area
- Developing economies to be led by East Asia, while several large emerging economies face internal and external challenges