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Found 12 results

  1. https://basedunderground.com/2021/07/14/blackrock-same-shady-people-who-own-pharma-and-media-want-your-house/ "BlackRock May Control the World’s Economic Future" "To put this into perspective, BlackRock, an investment firm, has more power than most governments on Earth, and it also controls the Federal Reserve, Wall Street mega-banks like Goldman Sachs and the WEF’s Great Reset, according to F. William Engdahl, a strategic risk consultant and lecturer who holds a degree in politics from Princeton University.13 Engdahl believes that, left unchecked, BlackRock will soon control the economic future of the world, and states, “BlackRock is the epitome of what Mussolini called Corporatism, where an unelected corporate elite dictates top down to the population.”14 For instance, three influential economic appointees of the current administration come from BlackRock." Home About Contact BlackRock: Same Shady People Who Own Pharma and Media Want Your House by Dr. Joseph Mercola July 14, 2021 Editor’s Commentary: The last time we covered BlackRock, it was the first time I had to deal with non-CCP bots and shills. The comments, hundreds of them, were filled with various defenses of the company. While I won’t accuse them directly of participating in the attempt to redirect or mislead, it’s conspicuous that of all the companies to have such an allegedly strong fanbase, it’s one of the most shrouded giant corporations in the land. This article by Dr. Joseph Mercola is both eye-opening and concerning. We often discuss globalist corporate agendas and how they both drive and are driven by an evil that is far more dangerous than greed alone. This deep dive into one of the many facets of the company should be spread far and wide. But first, here’s a video to set the stage… STORY AT-A-GLANCE In the first quarter of 2021, 15% of U.S. homes sold were purchased by corporate investors — not families looking to achieve their American dream The average American has virtually no chance of winning a home over an investment firm, which may pay 20% to 50% over asking price, in cash, sometimes scooping up entire neighborhoods at once BlackRock, one of the largest asset management firms, is among the firms buying up U.S. houses; they also control the media and Big Pharma If the average American is pushed out of the housing market, and most of the available housing is owned by investment groups and corporations, you become beholden to them as your landlord This fulfills part of the Great Reset’s “new normal” dictum — the part where you will own nothing and be happy; this isn’t a conspiracy theory — it’s part of WEF’s 2030 agenda Homeownership has long been considered an important tool for building financial security and wealth, but it’s becoming more difficult for Americans to achieve. Younger generations are less likely to own a home than those from older generations, with millennials’ homeownership rate 8% lower than that of generation X and baby boomers at the same age.1 If the rate had remained steady, about 3.4 million more people would own homes in the U.S. today but, instead, younger adults are increasingly choosing to either rent or live with their parents. There are a number of reasons why homeownership has become less attainable than it was decades ago, from rising debt in younger generations to increased cost of living. A report by the Urban Institute found half those aged 18 to 34 were spending upward of 30% of their income on rent, making them “rent-burdened.”2 Meanwhile, median housing prices increased 28% in the last two years,3 pricing some out of the market. However, the shift is not all happenstance. In the first quarter of 2021, 15% of U.S. homes sold were purchased by corporate investors4 — not families looking to achieve their American dream. While they’re competing with middle-class Americans for the homes, the average American has virtually no chance of winning a home over an investment firm, which may pay 20% to 50% over asking price,5 in cash, sometimes scooping up entire neighborhoods at once so they can turn them into rentals.6 BlackRock Is Buying Up US Houses BlackRock is one of a number of companies mentioned by The Wall Street Journal in a recent exposé. “Yield-chasing investors are snapping up single-family homes, competing with ordinary Americans and driving up prices,” they warned.7 The question is, why would institutional investors and BlackRock, which manages assets worth $5.7 trillion,8 be interested in overpaying for modest, single family homes? To understand the answer, you must look at BlackRock’s partners, which include the World Economic Forum (WEF),9 and their extreme political and financial clout. In a Twitter thread posted by user Culturalhusbandry, it’s noted:10 “Black Rock, Vanguard, and State Street control 20 trillion dollars worth of assets. Blackrock alone has a 10 billion a year surplus. That means with 5-20% down they can get mortgages on 130-170k homes every year. Or they can outright buy 30k homes per year. Just Blackrock. … Now imagine every major institute doing this, because they are. It can be such a fast sweeping action that 30yrs may be overshooting it. They may accomplish feudalism in 15 years.” If the average American is pushed out of the housing market, and most of the available housing is owned by investment groups and corporations, you become beholden to them as your landlord. This fulfills part of the Great Reset’s “new normal” dictum — the part where you will own nothing and be happy. This isn’t a conspiracy theory; it’s part of WEF’s 2030 agenda.11 The unstated implication is that the world’s resources will be owned and controlled by the technocratic elite, and you’ll have to pay for the temporary use of absolutely everything. Nothing will actually belong to you, including your home. All items and resources are to be used by the collective, while actual ownership is restricted to an upper stratum of social class. The wealth transfer has already begun. BlackRock’s Unrivaled Control The New York Times and a majority of other legacy media are largely owned by BlackRock and the Vanguard Group, the two largest asset management firms in the world, which also control Big Pharma. And it doesn’t end there. BlackRock and Vanguard are at the top of a pyramid that controls basically everything, but you don’t hear about their terrifying monopoly because they also own the media. You can watch all the details about BlackRock’s monopoly in this video, but Humans Are Free summed it up this way:12 “The power of these two companies is beyond your imagination. Not only do they own a large part of the stocks of nearly all big companies but also the stocks of the investors in those companies. This gives them a complete monopoly. A Bloomberg report states that both these companies in the year 2028, together will have investments in the amount of 20 trillion dollars. That means that they will own almost everything. Bloomberg calls BlackRock ‘The fourth branch of government,’ because it’s the only private agency that closely works with the central banks. BlackRock lends money to the central bank but it’s also the advisor. It also develops the software the central bank uses. … BlackRock, itself is also owned by shareholders … The biggest shareholder is Vanguard … The elite who own Vanguard apparently do not like being in the spotlight but of course they cannot hide from who is willing to dig. Reports from Oxfam and Bloomberg say that 1% of the world, together owns more money than the other 99%. Even worse, Oxfam says that 82% of all earned money in 2017 went to this 1%. In other words, these two investment companies, Vanguard and BlackRock hold a monopoly in all industries in the world and they, in turn are owned by the richest families in the world, some of whom are royalty and who have been very rich since before the Industrial Revolution.” BlackRock May Control the World’s Economic Future To put this into perspective, BlackRock, an investment firm, has more power than most governments on Earth, and it also controls the Federal Reserve, Wall Street mega-banks like Goldman Sachs and the WEF’s Great Reset, according to F. William Engdahl, a strategic risk consultant and lecturer who holds a degree in politics from Princeton University.13 Engdahl believes that, left unchecked, BlackRock will soon control the economic future of the world, and states, “BlackRock is the epitome of what Mussolini called Corporatism, where an unelected corporate elite dictates top down to the population.”14 For instance, three influential economic appointees of the current administration come from BlackRock. “There is a definite pattern and suggests that the role of BlackRock in Washington is far larger than we are being told,” Engdahl says.15 The Campaign for Accountability also released a report in 2019 detailing how BlackRock “implemented a strategy of lobbying, campaign contributions, and revolving door hires to fight off government regulation and establish itself as one of the most powerful financial companies in the world.”16,17 BlackRock founder and CEO Larry Fink also has close ties to WEF’s head Klaus Schwab, and joined WEF’s board in 2019. According to Engdahl: “Fink … now stands positioned to use the huge weight of BlackRock to create what is potentially, if it doesn’t collapse before, the world’s largest Ponzi scam, ESG [Environment, Social values and Governance] corporate investing. Fink with $9 trillion to leverage is pushing the greatest shift of capital in history into a scam known as ESG Investing. The UN ‘sustainable economy’ agenda is being realized quietly by the very same global banks which have created the financial crises in 2008. This time they are preparing the Klaus Schwab WEF Great Reset by steering hundreds of billions and soon trillions in investment to their hand-picked ‘woke’ companies, and away from the ‘not woke’ such as oil and gas companies or coal. … Oil companies like ExxonMobil or coal companies no matter how clear are doomed as Fink and friends now promote their financial Great Reset or Green New Deal … And we can expect that the New York Times will cheer BlackRock on as it destroys the world financial structures.” Blackstone Is the Largest Landlord in the US Another giant private equity firm, Blackstone, is also deeply entrenched in U.S. real estate. Blackstone is the largest landlord in the U.S. as well as the largest real estate company worldwide, with a portfolio worth $325 billion.18 In June 2021, Blackstone agreed to buy Home Partners of America, a company that rents single-family houses, and its 17,000 houses, for $6 billion. Blackstone and BlackRock sound alike for a reason. Blackstone’s co-founder, billionaire Steve Schwarzman, said during an interview on Squawk Box that he and Fink “started in business together. We put up the initial capital.” BlackRock used to be called Blackstone Financial, but Fink went off on his own. Schwarzman said, “Larry and I were sitting down and he said, ‘What do you think sort of about having a family name with ‘black’ in it,'”19 and BlackRock was born. Blackstone became notorious for swooping in after the housing bubble burst and buying tens of thousands of homes at deeply discounted prices. They then turned them into single-family rentals, taking advantage of the recession. In 2017, Bloomberg reported:20 “Blackstone built its rental-home business with an advantage few if any other buyers could match: billions of dollars in credit from large banks. Its Invitation Homes subsidiary quickly became the largest single-family home landlord in the U.S., with 50,000 properties. Altogether, hedge funds, private-equity firms and real estate investment trusts have raised about $20 billion to purchase as many as 200,000 homes to rent.” Now, with many struggling due to yearlong business shutdowns and lockdowns, and home prices rising, many Americans are having difficulty finding affordable single-family homes to buy.21 BlackRock Owns Your House, Gates Owns Your Farmland Both BlackRock CEO Fink and Bill Gates are pushing for “net zero” carbon emissions.22 But as BlackRock is busy buying up houses, Gates is hard at work amassing farmland and is now the largest owner of farmland in the U.S.23 By 2030, Gates is pushing for drastic, fundamental changes, including widespread consumption of fake meat, adoption of next generation nuclear energy and growth of a fungus as a new type of nutritional protein.24 The deadline Gates has given to reach net zero emissions is 2050,25 likely because he wants to realize his global vision during his lifetime. But according to Vandana Shiva, in order to force the world to accept this new food and agricultural system, new conditionalities are being created through net zero “nature-based” solutions. Navdanya’s report, “Earth Democracy: Connecting Rights of Mother Earth to Human Rights and Well-Being of All,” explains:26 “If ‘feeding the world’ through chemicals and dwarf varieties bred for chemicals was the false narrative created to impose the Green Revolution, the new false narrative is ‘sustainability’ and ‘saving the planet.’ In the new ‘net zero’ world, farmers will not be respected and rewarded as custodians of the land and caregivers, as Annadatas, the providers of our food and health. … ‘Net Zero’ is a new strategy to get rid of small farmers in first through ‘digital farming’ and ‘farming without farmers’ and then through the burden of fake carbon accounting. Carbon offsets and the new accounting trick of ‘net zero’ does not mean zero emissions. It means the rich polluters will continue to pollute and also grab the land and resources of those who have not polluted — indigenous people and small farmers — for carbon offsets.” A New Wave of Colonization Ultimately, we’re heading for a new wave of colonization in the name of sustainability and net zero carbon emissions. The solutions are complex. Some have suggested that one solution is to make building homes less expensive, so that new construction homes become less expensive. This, in turn, would drive down the cost of existing homes.27 The video at the top of this article goes into detail about another solution: ending the Federal Reserve to stop the central planning of our money supply and interest rates, which are artificially suppressed in a way that is most taken advantage of by the top 1%, contributing to growing wealth inequality.28 This engineered pandemic has catalyzed the transfer of wealth to the rich and, while the major players pushing for the Great Reset are still emerging, BlackRock and Blackstone are names to keep your eye on. 1, 2 CNBC November 25, 2020 3, 4 Slate June 19, 2021 5, 27, 28 YouTube June 10, 2021 6, 7 The Wall Street Journal April 4, 2021 8, 9 World Economic Forum, BlackRock 10, 21 Bitcoin.com, News June 11, 2021 11 Forbes November 10, 2016 12 Humans Are Free May 5, 2021 13, 14, 15, 17 WilliamEngdahl.com June 18, 2021 16 Campaign for Accountability September 5, 2019 18 ZeroHedge June 22, 2021 19 Yahoo Finance June 22, 2017 20 Bloomberg January 3, 2017 22 YouTube June 25, 2021 23 Fortune March 13, 2021 24 ZeroHedge February 16, 2021 25 Fox Business February 21, 2021 26 Navdanya, Earth Rights Are Human Rights. Page 14
  2. While the United States is distracted by its election, the rest of the world is planning the Great Reset. Keep your eye on the ball! Introducing the 'Great Reset,' world leaders' radical plan to transform the economy BY JUSTIN HASKINS, OPINION CONTRIBUTOR — 06/25/20 11:00 AM EDT 270 THE VIEWS EXPRESSED BY CONTRIBUTORS ARE THEIR OWN AND NOT THE VIEW OF THE HILL © Getty For decades, progressives have attempted to use climate change to justify liberal policy changes. But their latest attempt – a new proposal called the “Great Reset” – is the most ambitious and radical plan the world has seen in more than a generation. At a virtual meeting earlier in June hosted by the World Economic Forum, some of the planet’s most powerful business leaders, government officials and activists announced a proposal to “reset” the global economy. Instead of traditional capitalism, the high-profile group said the world should adopt more socialistic policies, such as wealth taxes, additional regulations and massive Green New Deal-like government programs. “Every country, from the United States to China, must participate, and every industry, from oil and gas to tech, must be transformed,” wrote Klaus Schwab, the founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum, in an article published on WEF’s website. “In short, we need a ‘Great Reset’ of capitalism.” Schwab also said that “all aspects of our societies and economies” must be “revamped,” “from education to social contracts and working conditions.” Joining Schwab at the WEF event was Prince Charles, one of the primary proponents of the Great Reset; Gina Gopinath, the chief economist at the International Monetary Fund; António Guterres, the secretary-general of the United Nations; and CEOs and presidents of major international corporations, such as Microsoft and BP. Activists from groups such as Greenpeace International and a variety of academics also attended the event or have expressed their support for the Great Reset. Although many details about the Great Reset won’t be rolled out until the World Economic Forum meets in Davos in January 2021, the general principles of the plan are clear: The world needs massive new government programs and far-reaching policies comparable to those offered by American socialists such as Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) in their Green New Deal plan. Or, put another way, we need a form of socialism — a word the World Economic Forum has deliberately avoided using, all while calling for countless socialist and progressive plans. “We need to design policies to align with investment in people and the environment,” said the general secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation, Sharan Burrow. “But above all, the longer-term perspective is about rebalancing economies.” One of the main themes of the June meeting was that the coronavirus pandemic has created an important “opportunity” for many of the World Economic Forum’s members to enact their radical transformation of capitalism, which they acknowledged would likely not have been made possible without the pandemic. “We have a golden opportunity to seize something good from this crisis — its unprecedented shockwaves may well make people more receptive to big visions of change,” said Prince Charles at the meeting, adding later, “It is an opportunity we have never had before and may never have again.” You might be wondering how these leaders plan to convince the world to completely alter its economy over the long run, since the COVID-19 pandemic most assuredly won’t remain a crisis forever. The answer is that they’ve already identified another “crisis” that will require expansive government intervention: Climate change. “The threat of climate change has been more gradual [than COVID-19]—but its devastating reality for many people and their livelihoods around the world, and its ever greater potential to disrupt, surpasses even that of Covid-19,” Prince Charles said. Of course, these government officials, activists and influencers can’t impose a systemic change of this size on their own. Which is why they have already started to activate vast networks of left-wing activists from around the world, who will throughout 2021 demand changes in line with the Great Reset. According to the World Economic Forum, its 2021 Davos summit will include thousands of members of the Global Shapers Community, youth activists located in 400 cities across the planet. The Global Shapers program was involved in the widespread “climate strikes” of 2019, and more than 1,300 have already been trained by the Climate Reality Project, the highly influential, well-funded climate activist organization run by former Vice President Al Gore, who serves on the World Economic Forum’s Board of Trustees. For those of us who support free markets, the Great Reset is nothing short of terrifying. Our current crony capitalist system has many flaws, to be sure, but granting more power to the government agents who created that crony system and eroding property rights is not the best way forward. America is the world’s most powerful, prosperous nation precisely because of the very market principles the Great Reset supporters loathe, not in spite of them. Making matters worse, the left has already proven throughout the COVID-19 pandemic that it can radically transform political realities in the midst of a crisis, so it’s not hard to see how the Great Reset could eventually come to fruition. Progressive House Democrats to host health care strategy session Bolton: Republican leaders need to explain to voters that Trump lost Can you imagine George W. Bush or Bill Clinton printing trillions of dollars and mailing it to millions of people who didn’t lose their jobs? This would have been unthinkable just a couple of decades ago. Today, this policy garners bipartisan support. Prince Charles was right: The present pandemic is a “golden opportunity” for radical change. And if Al Gore, Prince Charles and the rest of the World Economic Forum can convince enough people that attempting to stop climate change is also worth dramatically pushing humanity toward greater government control, then radical – and catastrophic – change is exactly what we’re going to get.
  3. Analysis .. The world is approaching the fourth wave of debt February 09, 2020 03:07 PM Mubasher - Ahmed Shawky : Amidst the World Bank warning of a massive wave of debt escalating all over the world, it is not clear who will be affected the most. But if the countries most vulnerable to the brunt of the debt wave, from the UK to India, do not act soon, they may face severe economic damage, according to Kyushik Paseo, a former World Bank economist, through an analysis published by Project Syndicate. Over the past decade, the global economy has seen a steady accumulation of debt, now reaching 230 percent of global GDP, with the fact that the last three debt waves have caused a major economic recession around the world. The catastrophic past of debt The first debt wave was in the early 1980s, after 10 years of low borrowing costs that enabled governments to expand their balance sheets considerably, interest rates began to rise, making debt service increasingly unsustainable. Mexico was the first victim, as the US government and the International Monetary Fund were informed in 1982 that they could no longer pay their debts. This had a domino effect, as 16 Latin American countries and 11 least developed countries outside the region eventually rescheduled their debt. In the 1990s, interest rates were again low, raising global debt again. The crash came in 1997, when the fast-growing but financially vulnerable East Asian economies - including Indonesia, Malaysia, South Korea and Thailand - experienced a sharp slowdown in growth and their currency rates plunged, thus extending effects to all parts of the world. But emerging economies are not alone vulnerable to such meltdowns, as demonstrated by the 2008 US mortgage crisis. By the time everyone discovered what the mortgage crisis meant, American investment bank Lehman Brothers had collapsed, causing the worst crises and recessions since the Great Depression. The fourth wave of debt The World Bank recently warned that the fourth debt wave may exceed in its first three waves, as emerging economies whose debt-to-GDP ratio reached a record low of 170 percent are particularly vulnerable. As in previous cases, the debt crisis increases due to lower interest rates, while anxiety will start as soon as interest starts to rise. The reality is that the mechanisms of such crises are not well understood, but research conducted by "Stephen Morris" and "Mortar Song Shin" in 1998 about the mysterious origins of currency crises, and how they are transmitted to other economies, shows that a "financial tsunami" can make the situation go beyond a source the crisis. How the source of the financial crisis could fade has been illustrated in the delightful short story "Ranam Kurtva" by the famous Indian writer, Shibram Chakraborti. In this story, the desperate Chipram asks an old school friend, Harsha, to lend him 500 rupees ($ 7) on Wednesday with a promise to pay the deposit the following Saturday. But Chibram is wasting money, so when he comes on Saturday, he has no choice but to ask another school friend, Jopar, for a loan of 500 rupees, to pay it back next Wednesday. Chipram uses the money to pay off his debts to Harsha, but when he comes on Wednesday he has no way to pay off Jopar’s debt, so he reminds Harsha that he paid off his debts on time and therefore borrowed from him again. This becomes customary as Shibram repeatedly borrows from a friend to pay off his debts to the other, and Shibram then clashes with Harsha and Jobar one day. After a moment of anxiety, Chipram proposes an idea that every Wednesday Harsha should give “Jopar” 500 rupees, and every Saturday the latter must give the same amount to the first. Shepram assures his former friends at school that this will save him a lot of time and change nothing for them, and he will disappear in the crowds of the city "Kolkata" in India. The UK and India are a model of the crisis So who are the potential "Harsha" and "Jobar" in today's debt spree? According to the World Bank, they could be any country with domestic vulnerabilities, a large fiscal balance sheet, and a heavily indebted population. There are many countries that fit this description and run the risk of becoming the channel that carries the fourth debt wave of the global economy. Among the advanced economies, the UK is a clear candidate, and in 2019 Britain barely avoided recession, recording the weakest pace of growth in any period not seen since the 1945 recession. Britain's conservatives have also promised big increases in commercial investment, and this is unlikely, but instead it will be a debt wave. Among emerging economies, India is particularly vulnerable, as in the 1980s the Indian economy was somewhat protected, and consequently the debt wave had little impact at that time. At the time of the East Asia crisis in 1997, India had just begun to open up and thus experienced some slowdown in growth. By the time of the debt wave in 2008, the country had become globally integrated and severely affected, but its economy was strong and growing at almost 10 percent annually, and recovered within a year. But India’s economy today faces one of the deepest crises of the past 30 years, with growth slowing sharply and unemployment at the highest level in 45 years, almost no export growth over the past six years, and per capita consumption in the agricultural sector over the past five years. Add to this a highly polarized political environment, and therefore it is no wonder that investor confidence is rapidly declining. It is not too late for countries to build "walls" to protect against the debt tsunami, while while India's political problems will take time to resolve, the new budget may be an opportunity to take precautionary action. The fiscal deficit must be controlled in the medium term, but the government will be prudent in adopting an expansionary fiscal policy now, with funds directed to support infrastructure and investment, and if managed properly, could boost demand without increasing inflationary pressures and strengthening the economy in order to cope with the debt wave. https://www.mubasher.info/news/3586473/تحليل-العالم-يقترب-من-الموجة-الرابعة-للديون/
  4. By Christine Lagarde, Managing Director, International Monetary Fund Fourth Arab Fiscal Forum, Dubai February 9, 2019 Good morning—Sabah Al-Khair! I am delighted to be back in Dubai, this city of tomorrow, where you—its economic leaders—are dedicated to realizing the vision of a better tomorrow. This vision is predicated on prosperity that is shared by all, benefiting the poor and the middle class, citizens and immigrants alike; and opportunities that are open to all, including women. It is a vision of fairness over cronyism and partiality, and of trust that government policy is oriented toward the common good. This is a big vision. But as Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum once said “The bigger your vision, the bigger your achievement will be…we cannot let fear keep us small. We have to be brave to be big." As you know so well, fiscal policy plays a vital role in creating and nurturing this vision of sustainable and inclusive growth—especially as encapsulated in the Sustainable Development Goals. This is because we need fiscal space for spending on health, education, social protection, and public investment—all key priorities in this region. This is why I wanted to come back to the Arab Fiscal Forum—my fourth time now. In past years, I talked in detail about fiscal policy—the spending and revenue measures needed to achieve sustainable and inclusive growth. This year, I want to go one level deeper—into the foundations of fiscal policy and good fiscal management. Because without a stable foundation, even the best policies can flounder. Without a stable foundation, fiscal policy will lack credibility. In this vein, I will address two key pillars of good fiscal management: (i) strong fiscal frameworks; and (ii) good governance and transparency. Prelude: Global and regional context Before I do this, let me say a few words about the broader economic context bearing on fiscal policy in the region. Unfortunately, the region has yet to fully recover from the global financial crisis and other big economic dislocations over the past decade. Among oil importers, growth has picked up, but it is still below pre-crisis levels. Fiscal deficits remain high, and public debt has risen rapidly—from 64 percent of GDP in 2008 to 85 percent of GDP a decade later. Public debt now exceeds 90 percent of GDP in nearly half of these countries. The oil exporters have not fully recovered from the dramatic oil price shock of 2014. Modest growth continues, but the outlook is highly uncertain—reflecting in part the need for countries to shift rapidly toward renewable energy over the new few decades, in line with the Paris Agreement. With revenues down, fiscal deficits are only slowly declining—despite significant reforms on both the spending and revenue sides, including the introduction of VAT and excise taxes. This has led to a sharp increase in public debt—from 13 percent of GDP in 2013 to 33 percent in 2018. At this juncture, the global expansion is weakening, and risks are rising. Just a few weeks ago, we released our revised forecasts. We now think that the global economy will grow by 3.5 percent this year, 0.2 percentage points below what we expected in October. And risks are up, given escalating trade tensions and tightening financial conditions. Unsurprisingly, a weaker global environment has knock-on effects on the region through a variety of channels—trade, remittances, capital flows, commodity prices, and financing conditions. The bottom line: the economic path ahead for the region is challenging. This makes the task of fiscal policy that much harder, which in turn makes it even more important to build strong foundations to anchor fiscal policy. 1. Fiscal Frameworks The first building block of this foundation is a good fiscal framework. By this I mean the set of laws, institutional arrangements, and procedures needed to achieve a country’s fiscal policy objectives. Such a framework allows governments to map out budgets over the medium term in a way that reflects clear, consistent, and credible goals. There is scope to improve fiscal frameworks in this region. Some of the weaknesses are short-termism and insufficient credibility. On short-termism: given that inclusive and sustainable growth is an inherently medium-term goal, fiscal policy needs a medium-term orientation. Focusing on the immediate horizon makes it harder to implement critical but longer-term reforms in such areas as tackling high public wage bills, designing effective social protection systems, and getting rid of harmful fuel subsidies. Short-termism implies that fiscal policy amplifies rather than tames the waves of booms and busts—making it more difficult to achieve sustainable and inclusive growth. Turning to fiscal credibility: I am referring to such factors as large amounts of spending kept off-budget and poor risk management. Across the region, it is common for sovereign wealth funds to directly finance projects, bypassing the normal budget process. And state-owned enterprises in some countries have high levels of borrowing—again, outside of the budget. Addressing these fiscal risks would not only enhance budget credibility and transparency but would help keep a lid on corruption. Budgetary credibility also calls for better risk management, with a more comprehensive budget based on realistic forecasts. The good news is that numerous countries are already strengthening their fiscal frameworks—many with IMF assistance. Just to give some examples: Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Sudan, Qatar, and Lebanon have all set up macro-fiscal units—a useful first step in strengthening the fiscal framework. Algeria has recently adopted a new budget law with a strong medium-term orientation, and Bahrain has introduced a fiscal program designed to achieve balance over the medium term. Mauritania, Morocco, Jordan, and Lebanon are making great progress with medium-term public investment planning and execution. Egypt now publishes a fiscal risk statement with its budget and produces an internal in-year budget risk assessment. The UAE too is rolling out a fiscal risk management project—with the IMF’s help—and will produce its first fiscal stress test this year. There is scope for further improvement. Perhaps the oil exporters could follow the example of other resource-rich countries such as Chile and Norway in using fiscal rules to protect key priorities such as social spending from commodity price volatility. Strong fiscal frameworks have other important benefits. They form the basis for sound debt management. They also allow for better coordination between fiscal and monetary policies, so that the two arms of macroeconomic management work together, not at cross purposes. 2. Good Governance and Transparency Let me now turn to the second pillar of good fiscal management—good governance and transparency. In this context, governance refers to the institutional frameworks and practices of the public sector. Strong institutions are crucial for legitimacy, for fostering a clearer understanding of policy objectives among citizens, enhancing their voice, and generating buy-in for fiscal policy. On the other hand, as many of you have said, weak institutions imply a weak policy foundation that could crack and crumble—because there is inadequate legitimacy and public accountability. Even worse, these cracks could also let corruption creep in. And you know so well, this is social poison—it feeds discord, disengagement, and disillusionment, especially among the young. The word corruption, after all, comes from Latin root for rotting, breaking apart—disintegration. And the word in Arabic, fasad, also connotes this idea of rotting or coming undone. Corruption is the great disruptor of fiscal policy. Without trust in the fairness of the tax system, it becomes harder to raise the revenue needed for critical spending on health, education, and social protection. And governments might be tempted to favor white elephant projects instead of investments in people and productive potential. Add this up, and we have a recipe for unsustainable fiscal policy combined with social discord. This a global issue—relevant for large and small countries, advanced and low-income economies, and the public and private sectors. Given this, it is no surprise that IMF research found that weak governance and corruption are associated with significantly lower growth, investment, FDI, and tax revenues—and higher inequality and exclusion. Specifically, we found that improving on an index of corruption and governance by moving from the bottom quarter to the mean is associated with an increase in the investment-to-GDP ratio of 1.5–2 percentage points and a bump up in annual GDP per capita growth by half a percentage point or more. [1] We will have more analysis in the upcoming Fiscal Monitor, which will be devoted to the topic of the fiscal costs of corruption and the role of fiscal institutions. What is the solution to weak governance and corruption? In the fiscal domain, it calls for heightened fiscal transparency—shining a light on all aspects of the budget and the public accounts. This would provide a more accurate picture of the fiscal position and prospects, the long-term costs and benefits of any policy changes, and the potential fiscal risks that might throw them off course. This region has some room for improvement here. We know that these kinds of reforms pay off. Take the case of Georgia, for example. Until 2003, it was seen as one of the most corrupt countries in the world. But after that, it reformed its institutions and cracked down on corruption. This, along with tax reform, led to immediate improvements. Tax revenues increased from 12 percent of GDP in 2003 to 25 percent of GDP in 2008, as taxpayers had greater faith in the fairness of the system. I should note that the IMF has been stepping up its engagement in the area of governance and corruption. Last year, we put in place a new framework predicated on a more systematic, evenhanded, effective, and candid engagement on these issues with member countries. We will be reaching out to leaders in this region to discuss how we can work together to implement this framework. With better governance, we can replace the “disintegration” of corruption with the “integration” of all into the productive economy. We can replace fasad with islah—reforms to set things right, to reconcile people with one another. Conclusion Let me wrap up. I have argued this morning that good fiscal policy requires good institutional foundations. And solid foundations in areas such as fiscal frameworks and governance give citizens confidence that fiscal policy serves the good of all, not just the wealthy or the well-connected. Let me end with some wise words attributed to the great Ibn Khaldun, “He who finds a new path is a pathfinder, even if the trail has to be found again by others; and he who walks far ahead of his contemporaries is a leader.” You are the pathfinders, the leaders, the visionaries. We hope that we can give useful guidance, but we look to you to find the right path to make this vision a reality. Thank you—shukran! [1] More specifically, those gains are associated with moving from the 25thpercentile to the 50th percentile in an index on corruption and governance. IMF Laying the foundations
  5. Statement by an IMF Mission on Iraq October 12, 2016 End-of-Mission press releases include statements of IMF staff teams that convey preliminary findings after a visit to a country. The views expressed in this statement are those of the IMF staff and do not necessarily represent the views of the IMF’s Executive Board. Based on the preliminary findings of this mission, staff will prepare a report that, subject to management approval, will be presented to the IMF's Executive Board for discussion and decision. Iraq has made progress on completing economic reforms under an IMF-supported program The Iraqi authorities and the staff of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) continued discussions in Washington during October 6–10, 2016 on the first review of Iraq’s 36-month Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) approved by the IMF Executive Board on July 7, 2016 (See Press Release No. 16/321) . Mr. Christian Josz, Mission Chief for Iraq, issued the following statement: “The Iraqi authorities have made good progress towards completing the first review of the SBA. “Once agreed upon additional information has been provided and agreed prior actions have been implemented, the IMF Board will consider the first review of the SBA, likely in November or December. “During the discussions, the team met with Acting Governor of the Central Bank of Iraq (CBI), Dr. Ali Mohsen Ismail Al-Allaq, Deputy Finance Minister, Dr. Fadhil Nabee Othman, the Financial Adviser to the Prime Minister Dr. Mudher Saleh, and officials from the ministry of finance, the CBI, and a representative from the Kurdistan Regional Government. The team would like to thank the Iraqi authorities for their cooperation and the open and productive discussions.” http://www.imf.org/en/news/articles/2016/10/12/pr16456-Iraq-statement-by-imf-mission
  6. The Calculus of Conflict in the Middle East Posted on September 16, 2016 by iMFdirect By Christine Lagarde As world leaders head to New York this week for the United Nations General Assembly, there is still no end to the heart-breaking images of war-torn cities in the Middle East and North Africa, and of a massive exodus of people looking for sanctuary and opportunities to sustain a livelihood. Within the region, more than 20 million people are displaced, and a further 10 million are refugees—a scale not seen since the end of World War II. The immense humanitarian costs that these conflicts inflict are difficult to grasp. The economic consequences are also significant. Much of the productive capital in conflict zones has been destroyed, personal wealth and income losses are enormous, and human capital deteriorates with the lack of jobs and education. The Fund, along with the international community, will be called upon to assist in rebuilding the economy once the conflicts end. We have therefore looked more deeply into the economic challenges brought about by these conflicts, as well as into options for policymakers on managing the post-conflict recovery. Let me highlight three key findings that were published in an IMF staff paper today. First, the economic costs of conflicts are massive. In addition to tragic loss of life and physical destruction, war and internal strife in countries such as Iraq, Libya, Syria, and Yemen have exacerbated already high levels of poverty, unemployment, and pushed countries further into fragility erasing previous development gains for a whole generation. For example, in Syria school dropout rates reached 52 percent in 2013 and life expectancy fell to 56 years from 76 years before the conflict. Conflicts have also driven up inflation, weakened fiscal and financial positions, caused deep recessions and damaged institutions. For example, after four years of intense fighting, Syria’s output is now estimated to be less than half its level in 2010, before the conflict, while inflation surged by almost 300 percentage points in May 2015, the latest available month of data. Yemen lost an estimated 25-35 percent of its GDP in 2015 alone. These are staggering numbers. Conflicts leave deep marks on economies. We estimate that even with a relatively high annual growth rate of 4.5 percent, it would take Syria more than 20 years just to rebound to its 2010 pre-conflict GDP level. Yet, the impact of conflicts is not confined to national borders. There are also powerful spillovers to neighboring countries, such as Jordan, Lebanon, Tunisia, and Turkey, and beyond (see Chart). To varying degrees, these countries are exposed to the challenges of hosting large numbers of refugees, weaker confidence and security, and declining social cohesion. All this affects the quality of institutions and their ability to undertake much needed economic reforms. A second major finding is that appropriate policies can limit the immediate impact of conflicts. This means: Protecting economic institutions. Experience has shown that keeping core government institutions functioning in times of conflict—such as fiscal agents and central banks – is key to maintain life-saving services to people. Such institutions provide wages and salaries, health, and other services. Prioritizing spending. Conflicts are associated with greater fiscal pressures. Spending on security and military increase just as government revenues drop. In such an environment, prioritizing spending is critical to ensure that essential services, including shelter, are maintained to protect the most vulnerable groups. Ensuring macroeconomic stability. Fiscal and external imbalances increase during conflicts, and central banks tend to take on a greater role in financing governments and facilitating economic activity—as happened in Yemen and Libya. The resulting rise in inflation and loss of currency reserves may require the use of nontraditional tools and administrative measures to maintain some degree of macroeconomic control. Third, external partners, including the IMF, all have a role to play in helping countries to confront, and eventually overcome, conflict. The priority is first and foremost to alleviate human suffering and meet the immediate needs of those affected by conflicts. The IMF has been an important partner in these efforts—for example, by accommodating refugee or security-related outlays in our programs with Iraq, Jordan and Tunisia, as well as through our policy advice and capacity building activities throughout the region. We are also hoping to catalyze additional donor support for countries hosting refugees. At the London Conference for Supporting Syria and the Region in February, donors committed to funding humanitarian and development activities to the tune of $5.9 billion and $5.5 billion for 2016 and 2017–20, respectively. Even if all these pledges were fulfilled, they would not be enough given the magnitude of the crisis. Moreover, any financing should come through grants and concessional loans to reduce the financial burden on recipient countries. Over the longer term, the priority is to provide scaled-up development aid to help rebuild infrastructure and institutions, and, more broadly, strengthen economic and social resilience across the region. Here too, the IMF stands ready to help with a macroeconomic toolkit and experience gained from many years of working in post-conflict zones around the world. The international community has a major responsibility in helping countries in the region overcome this situation. We are ready to do our part. https://blog-imfdirect.imf.org/2016/09/16/the-calculus-of-conflict-in-the-middle-east/ IMF says Mideast conflicts wiped out gains of a generation Sep 16, 2016 The Associated Press 0 AMMAN, Jordan – Conflicts in Middle Eastern countries such as Iraq, Libya, Syria, and Yemen have erased “development gains for a whole generation,” including driving up already high levels of poverty and unemployment, the head of the International Monetary Fund said Friday. The international community must be prepared to scale up long-term development aid in the region to rebuild infrastructure and institutions, IMF chief Christine Lagarde wrote in a blog accompanying a report by the fund on the economic cost of conflict in the Middle East. More than $11 billion pledged by donor countries for Syria and the region through 2020, if indeed delivered, “would not be enough given the magnitude of the crisis,” she wrote. Aid should come in the form of grants and concessional loans to ease the financial burden on the countries receiving the support, she added. Lagarde noted that more than 20 million people in the region are displaced and an additional 10 million are refugees, more than at any time since World War II. “The international community has a major responsibility in helping countries in the region overcome this situation,” she wrote. “We are ready to do our part.” The IMF report and Lagarde’s comments were released ahead of a high-level U.N. summit next week on refugees and migrants. The fund said that since the middle of the 20th century, the Middle East and North Africa have experienced more frequent and severe conflicts than any other parts of the world. Conflict has pushed countries like Iraq, Libya, Syria, and Yemen “further into fragility, erasing previous development gains for a whole generation,” Lagarde wrote. For example, Syria’s economic output, or Gross Domestic Product, is estimated to be less than half of what it was in 2010, a year before the outbreak of conflict there. Inflation, meanwhile, rose by almost 300 percentage points in May 2015. Yemen lost between 25 per cent and 35 per cent of its GDP in 2015, the report said. http://www.canadianbusiness.com/business-news/imf-says-mideast-conflicts-wiped-out-gains-of-a-generation/
  7. sczin11. 27 July 2015... Article quote: Monetary. Laundering Law by October or isolation from the world organization. This is not a threat. It is real. A few weeks back we saw the releases reguarding the WB & IMF lloans & the need for certain things to be accomplished or else...the blacklist. Now here we see the deadline, a timeframe...not for a change. in value for the Dinar nessesarilly, but the words...are clear... approve the laws & play hardball with the global community, if not, severe impact. to the monetary reform & isolation from the world community. The international community has been supporting Iraq, their attempts to clean up their act & join together with the world...their time is up. We are at the end of the road. I dont see early 2016 like many have stated.
  8. from another source... All aboard the RV train. The globe has become tired of the USA holding up global currency reform & has acted on it's own. First the ratify of the Iraq budget now this. There's nothing stopping this RV/RI train anymore. Treat as a rumor until verifies. Stage3Alpha: EXOGEN February 10, 2015 IMF weighs dropping U.S. veto over delayed reforms: sources By Anna Yukhananov and Lidia Kelly, Reuters February 10, 2015 WASHINGTON/MOSCOW (Reuters) - The IMF's board last month discussed two options for moving forward on voting reforms without the United States, including a proposal under which Washington would lose its veto power at the global lender, according to three sources familiar with the proposals. The sources, who have seen an IMF staff paper laying out the options, said the plan would ask the United States to temporarily give up its controlling share of IMF votes, amid growing frustration with U.S. foot-dragging on reforms meant to give emerging markets more say at the institution.
  9. IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde Welcomes GCC Countries Strong Economic Performance, Identifies Key Reforms to Sustain Growth Press Release No. 14/485 October 25, 2014 Ms. Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), issued the following statement today at the conclusion of a meeting in Kuwait with the finance ministers and central bank governors of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)1 and the inauguration of the IMF-Middle East Center for Economics and Finance. “I am grateful for the opportunity to meet with the finance ministers and central bank governors of the GCC. At a time of continuing challenges in the global economy, forums such as this are important to provide a platform for policymakers to share views and come together to solve problems in a cooperative way. “I value our cooperation with the GCC. The IMF-Middle East Center for Economics and Finance, which I inaugurated today with H.E. Minister Al-Saleh, is an outstanding example of how the IMF and the GCC countries can work together to achieve their mutual goals. With the support of the Kuwaiti government, this Center is well-established as a premier location for economics training for government officials and it has now provided training to more than 3,600 officials from the 22 countries of the Arab League The training being provided through this center will help us build a brighter future together. “The GCC economies have been amongst the best performing in the world in recent years. The near-term outlook is positive, with growth of about 4½ percent projected in 2014–15. Particularly, growth in the non-oil sector is expected to remain strong at about 6 percent, driven by large investments in infrastructure and private sector confidence. “Oil prices have fallen by about 25 percent since the summer, and this will affect fiscal and external balances in the region. While the substantial fiscal buffers that have been built-up in most countries over the past decade will allow governments to maintain spending plans in the near-term, in almost all GCC countries it increases the urgency for fiscal consolidation in the medium-term. “There is scope to strengthen policy frameworks in the GCC to support economic management. On the fiscal side, this could involve reforms to the annual budget process and the introduction of a medium-term budget framework. Regarding macroprudential policies, the introduction of a formal macroprudential policy framework would clarify responsibilities and coordination among regulators. “The future success of the GCC economies will be closely tied to ongoing efforts to boost the employment of nationals in the private sector and to increase economic diversification. Many policies are being implemented to achieve these objectives, and important progress is being made. Nevertheless, getting the economic incentives right so as to encourage workers to seek employment in the private sector and firms to produce in exported-oriented sectors is a key missing element of policies to date. “I thank H.E. Anas Khalid Al-Saleh, Minister of Finance for Kuwait, for chairing the GCC meeting and for his generous hospitality. I also thank Dr. Abdul Latif bin Rashid Al-Zayani, the GCC Secretary General.” 1 The GCC is comprised of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates. http://www.imf.org/external/np/sec/pr/2014/pr14485.htm
  10. August 23, 2013 AFP • International Monetary Fund told to vacate the country; nation now issuing debt-free money By Ronald L. Ray Hungary is making history of the first order. Not since the 1930s in Germany has a major European country dared to escape from the clutches of the Rothschild-controlled international banking cartels. This is stupendous news that should encourage nationalist patriots worldwide to increase the fight for freedom from financial tyranny. Already in 2011, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán promised to serve justice on his socialist predecessors, who sold the nation’s people into unending debt slavery under the lash of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the terrorist state of Israel. Those earlier administrations were riddled with Israelis in high places, to the fury of the masses, who finally elected Orbán’s Fidesz party in response. According to a report on the German-language website “National Journal,” Orbán has now moved to unseat the usurers from their throne. The popular, nationalistic that Hungary neither wants nor needs further “assistance” from that proxy of the Rothschild-owned Federal Reserve Bank. No longer will Hungarians be forced to pay usurious interest to private, unaccountable central bankers. ________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________ Instead, the Hungarian government has assumed sovereignty over its own currency and now issues money debt free, as it is needed. The results have been nothing short of remarkable. The nation’s economy, formerly staggering under deep indebtedness, has recovered rapidly and by means not seen since National Socialist Germany. The Hungarian Economic Ministry announced that it has, thanks to a “disciplined budget policy,” repaid on August 12, 2013, the remaining €2.2B owed to the IMF—well before the March 2014 due date. Orbán declared: “Hungary enjoys the trust of investors,” by which is not meant the IMF, the Fed or any other tentacle of the Rothschild financial empire. Rather, he was referring to investors who produce something in Hungary for Hungarians and cause true economic growth. This is not the “paper prosperity” of plutocratic pirates, but the sort of production that actually employs people and improves their lives. With Hungary now free from the shackles of servitude to debt slavers, it is no wonder that the president of the Hungarian central bank, operated by the government for the public welfare and not private enrichment, has demanded that the IMF close its offices in that ancient European land. In addition, the state attorney general, echoing Iceland’s efforts, has brought charges against the last three previous prime ministers because of the criminal amount of debt into which they plunged the nation. The only step remaining, which would completely destroy the power of the banksters in Hungary, is for that country to implement a barter system for foreign exchange, as existed in Germany under the National Socialists and exists today in the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, or BRICS, international economic coalition. And if the United States would follow the lead of Hungary, Americans could be freed from the usurers’ tyranny and likewise hope for a return to peaceful prosperity.
  11. SLAMABAD- Pakistan is all set to seek a bailout package of up to $5 billion from the International Monetary Fund to repay its loans as the IMF team is arriving Islamabad tonight on a five-day visit. Sources say that during the first phase Pakistan and IMF would talk about the Post Programme Monitoring (PPM) and later a bailout package of $3 to $5 billion would be sought to repay loans. Pakistan has to pay loans of $3 billion to the Fund during the financial year 2013-2014 for which the country needs foreign reserves. “We will never accept any loan programme if IMF links it with quarterly increase in gas and power tariff”, said a Finance Ministry official. He added that Pakistan would take loan on easy conditions. He said that Pakistan would seek to get Letter of Comfort (LoC) from the IMF after assessment of economic situation that would help in getting loans from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and World Bank (WB). Talking about the alternative plan, the official said ‘we have also plan B that would help in generating foreign reserves of $3 billion to repay the loans. He added that Pakistan would receive $1 billion by auctioning 3G licenses, $800 million was due on Etisalat against the privatisation of the Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) and $1.2 billion was due under the coalition support fund of the United States. Finance Minister Ishaq Dar had said on Thursday that a new package would be negotiated with the IMF— but on Pakistan’s terms. Addressing the post-budget press conference, the finance minister said Pakistan will negotiate a new programme with the Fund to obtain a loan for meeting its obligations towards the institution, but “national interests” will not be compromised. Dar said in its visit from June 19, the IMF mission would also review the country’s ability to pay back the earlier obtained loans. “Talks will also be held for a programme but on terms and conditions of Pakistan,” said Dar. The IMF’s dictation will not be accepted, he added. “We will take loans to the extent we owe to the IMF.” Pakistan had earlier obtained an $8 billion loan and has paid back $3.7 billion, leaving it with a balance of roughly $4.3 billion. The finance minister said there was no harm in obtaining loans to the extent of paying back earlier loans. In November 2008, Pakistan had signed an $11.3 billion programme with the IMF to avoid possible bankruptcy. However, the monetary body prematurely terminated the arrangement following Pakistan’s inability to initiate crucial fiscal and energy reforms. The budget 2013-14 carried the required level of fiscal adjustments that IMF had demanded.
  12. Did anyone else notice that the IMF agreement is expiring Saturday 2/23/2013? Will this have an impact on Budget or how payments are made moving forward?
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