Apr||-June 2010

AIso ln Ihls edlIlon...
WlII GIobaI Warnlng CooI Hoµes
for AgrlcuIIuraI Galns?
llnancler ]ln Rogers· SIockbrokers
ShouId Learn Io Drlte TracIors
Ald Work ln ConñlcI Zones÷
More Dangerous Than SoIdlerlng
A publicalion of lhe Asian Developmenl ßank
A
GROWING
HUNGER
Loom|ng food secur|ty |ssues
threaten As|an and Pac|ñc nat|ons,
a|ready home to two-th|rds of the wor|d's hungry
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 1
WWW.DEVELOPMENT.ASIA
ĝ 2010 Asian Deve|opment Bank
ISSN 1998-7528
ASIAN DEVELOPMENT BANK
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EDITORIAL AND CREATIVE DIRECTOR
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(UK`4HY[PU
+L]LSVWTLU[(ZPH features deve|opment issues
important to Asia and the Paciñc. It is pub|ished
four times a year by the Asian Deve|opment
Bank and Haymarket Media Ltd. The views
expressed in this magazine are those of the
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Note. In this pub|ication, "$" refers to US
do||ars
A pub|ication of the Asian Deve|opment Bank,
designed and distributed by Haymarket
Media Limited
P08L|$h£8'$ h0T£
BrIngIng Fnnd
SccurItv tn thc Tab!c
P
erhaps no issue casls a harsher lighl on social inequilies lhan lhe groving
number of people vho go hungrv evervdav.
According lo lhe Iood and Agricullure Òrganizalion of lhe Uniled
Nalions (IAÒ), more people go hungrv in lhe vorld lodav lhan al anv
lime since 197O. An eslimaled 1.O2 billion people vere undernourished vorldvide
in 2OO9, 642 million of vhom lived in Asia and lhe Iacihc, lhe IAÒ reporls.
Access lo food÷or food securilv÷has become an issue lhal no one can
ignore: lhe lives of millions and lhe slabililv of governmenls depend on shrevd
managemenl of food supplies. As lhe riols and hoarding during lhe food crisis in
2OO8 have shovn, lhe mere menlion of a shorlage is enough lo deslabilize markels
and even governmenls.
As usual, lhe pooresl have been hil lhe hardesl: lhev have faced rising food
prices vhile lhe global economic crisis has ballered lheir incomes. Declining crop
vields, land degradalion, urbanizalion, and lhe effecls of climale change are pulling
addilional pressure on efforls lo produce more food. Markel speculalion makes lhe
silualion even more precarious.
This edilion of Dctc|cpmcni Asic lackles lhis crilical issue from varied
perspeclives÷from lhe poinls of viev of science, civil socielv, and business.
As our cover slorv, A Grcuing Hungcr, puls il, lhere is no quick, one-size-hls-all
solulion, especiallv for a region as geographicallv diverse as Asia and lhe Iacihc.
ßuilding consensus is a huge, ongoing challenge for leaders, decision makers, and
slakeholders in lhe region as lhev vreslle vilh conßicling priorilies.
In 1nc Hungcr Mcngcr, renovned hnancier Iim Rogers, an oulspoken advocale
of agricullural inveslmenls, acknovledges lhal food securilv is a highlv emolional
and polilical issue. He gives a candid inlerviev on lhe perceived lension belveen
business inleresls and social needs, and domeslic and inlernalional concerns.
In olher slories, ve vrile aboul hov some developmenl professionals risk life
and limb lo deliver assislance in conßicl zones vhile olhers commil abuses in lhe
name of aid. We lalk aboul lhe need for a nev debl arbilralion svslem and lhe
ralionale behind uncondilional dole-ouls.
This edilion of Dctc|cpmcni Asic fealures an updaled design vilh a more diverse
seleclion of arlicles and fealures, all geared lovard making lhe magazine more
reader-friendlv and lhe issues more underslandable. As alvavs, ve encourage
vour feedback. ■
Ann Òuon
Iublisher
2 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O vvv.developmenl.asia
CONTENTS
YEAR III, NUMBER VII, APRIL-JUNE 2010
FOCUS
FOOD SECURITY
8 THE BIG READ
A GROWING HUNGER
Wilh more lhan 5O/ of vorld demand
for food expecled lo come from Asia, lhe
biggesl challenge leaders in lhe region
mav vel face is hov lo feed lhe hungrv.
Also, sidebar: B|O|U|IS÷BI|GH1 OR
BI|SS|NG?
This allernalive lo fossil fuels mav
be increasing rural farmers' incomes,
bul il is also raising lhe prices of
agricullural commodilies.
Bu Brucc Hci||uin
___________________________________
16 THE BIG PICTURE
FOOD SECURITY ACROSS ASIA
Almosl lvo-lhirds of lhe vorld's 1.O2
billion undernourished live in Asia and
lhe Iacihc.
Bu Mcrk B|cckuc||
___________________________________
18 THE BIG VOICE
THE HUNGER MONGER
An exclusive inlerviev vilh hnancier
Iim Rogers, a beslselling aulhor,
professor, and oulspoken commenlalor
on commodilies and food securilv
Bu |ric Hcc|u
_______________________________
26 SEEDS OF CONTROVERSY
Mullinalionals are racing lo breed lhe
nev generalion of slaple crops, raising
debale over palenls and markel access
for poor farmers.
Bu jcnn Bcrinc|scn
54 EASY TARGETS
More aid vorkers are being killed
vorldvide lhan armed Uniled Nalions
peacekeepers. The escalaling number
of allacks is making developmenl vork
unacceplablv dangerous in manv parls
of lhe vorld.
Bu jcc Cccnrcnc
_______________________________
58 LET'S MAKE A DEAL
The debililaling effecl of lhe global
economic crisis on poor nalions is
underscoring lhe need for a middle
ground belveen defaulling on foreign
debl and making populalions suffer in
order lo make pavmenls.
Bu |mmc-Kcic Sumcns
_______________________________
62 PROFILES IN DEVELOPMENT
THE METER MAN
Ihnom Ienh Waler Supplv Aulhorilv's
Lk Sonn Chan has pul his life on lhe
line lo provide clean, cheap valer
lo lhe Cambodian capilal's pooresl
neighborhoods.
Bu ||cu! Wnc|cu
_______________________________
64 RECONNAISSANCE
SAVING THE WORLD,
ONE VACATION AT A TIME
Tourisls in Nepal are being given
lhe chance lo use lheir professional
skills vhile on vacalion in vhal is
somelimes called ¨volunlourism.¨
Bu Mcrgc Pjcijj
30 ASIA'S ORGANIC SPROUTS
A lendencv lovard proleclionism and a
bias for Weslern markels is limiling lhe
developmenl of organic agricullure in
lhe region.
Bu Wi||icm Brcnigin
_______________________________
36 WARMING GLOBE COOLS
HOPES
Irequenl nalural disaslers and exlreme
vealher condilions mav lhrealen lhe
region's food supplv.
Also, sidebar: GR||N|R PAS1UR|S
Sludies shovs grasslands can help slore
up lo 1 billion lons of carbon a vear.
Bu Brcnuun Currcn
_______________________________
44 DIGGING INTO THE GREEN
REVOLUTION
The green revolulion vas once
lhoughl lo be lhe vorld's salvalion
from hunger, bul lhere are slill more
lhan 1 billion undernourished people
vorldvide despile decades of dramalic
increases in food produclion.
Bu ||cu! Wnc|cu
_______________________________
ARTICLES
50 JUST GIVE THEM THE MONEY
Uncondilional cash lransfers÷or
giving lhe poor monev vilh no slrings
allached÷are challenging convenlional
vievs on developmenl vork.
Bu ||cu! Wnc|cu
8 UP IN ARMS OVER HIGH PRICES 36 DEVASTATING EFFECTS OF CLIMATE
CHANGE ON CROPS
18 FOOD "MORE EMOTIONAL THAN
OIL"-ROGERS
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 3
John BertheIsen is editor of the Hong
Kong, China-based Asia Sentinel, a
regional internet magazine. He came to
Asia to cover the Viet Nam confict for
Newsweek.
Mark BIackweII has more than 20 years
of experience covering issues ranging
from science and economics to politics and
cross-border issues in Latin America for
news organizations, including the Hearst
Corporation and Capital Cities/ABC. He
specializes in informational graphics.
WiIIiam Branigin served as
Southeast Asia bureau chief
of The Washington Post for
10 years, reporting from more
than a dozen countries in the
region. He was based in Bangkok from 1981
to 1986 and in Manila from 1990 to 1995.
Joe Cochrane is deputy editorial adviser
at the Jakarta Globe newspaper. He is a
former Southeast Asia correspondent for
Newsweek magazine and bureau chief for
Deutsche Presse-Agentur in Cambodia,
Indonesia, Pakistan, and Afghanistan.
Mark Bryant is a journalist
with more than 15 years
experience as a reporter and
editor for online media and
newspapers, including The
Seattle Times, the Associated Press, and
ABCNEWS.com.
Bronwyn Curran is an Islamabad-based
journalist who worked as a Pakistan and
Afghanistan correspondent for the news
service Agence France Presse. She is also
the author of Into the Mirror, a biography
of Mukhtar Mai, a Pakistani woman who
became an international symbol of female
oppression after suviving a gang-rape
in 2002, then bringing her case to court
successfully in Pakistan.
Eric HeaIy is managing editor of
Development Asia. He has worked in
international media for two decades.
Bruce HeiIbuth has worked
as a journalist and foreign
correspondent on four
continents. He spent nearly a
decade as the editor-in-chief
of Readerҋs Digest magazineҋs Australasian
and Asian-English editions.
Margo Pfeiff is a Canada-
based journalist and
photographer with 30 years of
experience writing for the Los
Angeles Times, San Francisco
Chronicle, and other publications. She is
currently researching a book on the Arctic.
Bruce McCIeIIand is an
Arizona-based photographer
with more than 25 years
experience in news and
feature photography
throughout the United States and
internationally. He currently runs an event
photography business.
Emma-Kate Kunth-Symons
is a Bangkok-based journalist
who has reported from
Sydney, Paris, London,
New York, Washington,
and Manila for newspapers, magazines,
radio, and television. A former Paris-
based correspondent for The Australian
newspaper, she has been published in The
Wall Street Journal, The Sunday Telegraph,
The Washington Post, and The Australian
Literary Review.
FIoyd WhaIey, senior editor of Development
Asia, operates Asia Editorial Services. His
work has appeared in the International
Herald Tribune, USA Today, Los Angeles
Times, Discovery Channel Magazine, and
many other media outlets.
DEPARTMENTS
4 OFF THE PRESS
Reprinl-vorlhv snippels from
publicalions vorldvide on
developmenl issues
_______________________________
5 ON THE WEB
Nolevorlhv corners of lhe vorldvide
veb
_______________________________
48 OFF THE SHELF
Nev arrivals lo librarv shelves in lhe
seclion for musl-read books aboul
developmenl and economics
_______________________________
68 ON THE RECORD
Nolevorlhv quoles on developmenl
and economic issues
CnntrIbutnrs
CLEAN PLATES IMPOVERISHED PAKISTANIS
EAT FOOD PROVIDED BY AN AID ORGANIZATION
ON A STREET IN KARACHI ON 16 APRIL 2010.
SEVENTEEN MILLION ASIANS HAVE FALLEN
INTO EXTREME POVERTY DUE TO THE GLOBAL
FINANCIAL CRISIS, THE ASIAN DEVELOPMENT
BANK AND THE UNITED NATIONS SAID IN
FEBRUARY. ANOTHER 4 MILLION THIS YEAR
COULD SLIP INTO THE SAME SITUATION DUE TO
THE EFFECTS OF THE DOWNTURN, OFFICIALS
FROM THE TWO ORGANIZATIONS SAID AT THE
LAUNCH OF A JOINT REPORT ON POVERTY
ALLEVIATION IN MANILA. THESE FIGURES ARE IN
ADDITION TO THE 900 MILLION PEOPLE IN ASIA
ALREADY LIVING IN EXTREME POVERTY, DEFINED
AS LIVING ON LESS THAN $1.25 A DAY.
COVER PHOTO
4 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O vvv.developmenl.asia
ßv lhe World ßank's dehnilion of poverlv, lhere are more poor people in lhe
vorld lodav lhan a quarler cenlurv ago. Yel, lhe slralegv for reducing poverlv
across praclicallv everv developing nalion has remained essenliallv lhe same
for lhe pasl several decades. ¨Handouls vill nol solve poverlv: neilher vill il be
solved bv grand governmenl pro|ecls, or bv piecemeal inlervenlions of NGÒs.
Inslead, poverlv vill be solved vilh vibranl economic aclivilv driven mosllv bv
lhe privale seclor,¨ vriles Abraham George, founder of The George Ioundalion,
and aulhor of |n!ic Unicucnc!. 1nc |crgciicn |ccc cj Rurc| Pctcriu.÷Wnu inc hgni
cgcinsi pctcriu is jci|ing. A ccnircricn ticu |u |n!ic Kncu|c!gc©Wncricn, Wncricn
Scncc| cj inc Unitcrsiiu cj Pcnnsu|tcnic, 31 Ocic|cr 2006
Pub!Ic Scctnr Can't Sn!vc
G!nba! Pnvcrtv
ChI!dhnnd Pnvcrtv HIts Hard
Larlv childhood is a ¨crucial lime for eslablishing lhe brain archileclure lhal
shapes children's fulure cognilive, social, and emolional vell-being,¨ savs a
sludv in lhe Uniled Slales. ¨Children groving up in a disadvanlaged selling
shov disproporlionale levels of reaclivilv lo slress.¨ Yel researchers found il vas
possible lo improve lhe fulure of poor children, bv giving lhe families of under-5s
more income.÷Agcncc |rcncc-Prcssc, 21 |c|rucru 2010
Thc Mvth nI
MIcrn!nans
¨ßv everv slandard, poverlv has
vorsened in ßangladesh over lhe pasl
2 decades as microloans became lhe
all-pervasive 'solulion' lo poverlv,¨
argues lhe Wcrkcrs Wcr|!. Aneel
Karnani, professor al lhe Universilv of
Michigan's Ross School of ßusiness,
argues lhal microcredil does nol
empover vomen or increase lhe
number of people vilh |obs or lhe
gross domeslic producl of a counlrv.¨÷
Wcrkcrs Wcr|!, 24 |c|rucru 2010
0FF Th£ P8£$$
A VIctnrv Inr
RIckshaw Pu!!crs
A Delhi high courl overlurned a limil on
lhe number of rickshav drivers sel bv
local aulhorilies, vho had mainlained
lhal rickshav pulling vas a degrading
aclivilv. The courl advised aulhorilies lo
inslead largel privale cars, largelv ovned
bv lhe cilv's booming middle class, and
lo consider inlroducing a congeslion fee.
÷1nc Gucr!icn, 11 |c|rucru 2010
Batt!Ing Gcndcr BIgntrv
India and Malavsia have annulled lheir lavs alloving marilal rape...|The
Republic of] Korea has changed ils lav designaling lhe man as head of lhe familv.
And Iakislan has removed lhe evidenliarv requiremenl of four male Muslim
vilnesses lo prove rape. ¨Hovever, despile commilmenls lo repeal all gender-
based discriminalorv lavs, manv remain in force, vhich denv vomen formal
recourse lo |uslice and prevenl lhem from fullv parlicipaling in socielv,¨ savs
Taina ßien-Aime, execulive direclor of Lqualilv Nov.÷|nicr Prcss Scrticc, 24
|c|rucru 2010
G!nba! CrIsIs
Fuc!s ChI!d Scx
Tradc
¨The recenl economic dovnlurn is
sel lo drive more vulnerable children
and voung people lo be exploiled bv
lhe global sex lrade,¨ savs Carmen
Madrinan, execulive direclor of
LCIAT Inlernalional. Increasing
poverlv and less funding for social
services are lvo of lhe faclors lhal
heighlen children's vulnerabililv.÷
G|c|c| Pcsi, 28 Òclober 2OO9
PrnIIts and PrcscrvatInn
During a 2OO2 lrip, Laurence ßrahm realized lhe need for a developmenl slralegv
in lhe Himalavas lhal enables elhnic groups lo slarl enlerprises vhile holding
onlo lheir religious and cullural lradilions. He dubbed his experimenl in local
developmenl lhe ¨Himalavan Consensus.¨
¨The pilfalls lhal I have seen come from a failure lo see hov local condilions
vill impacl lhe long-lerm success or failure of an economic developmenl
plan,¨ savs ßrahm, an inlernalional medialor, lavver, aulhor, and aclivisl.÷
G|c|c|Ai|cnic, 16 |c|rucru 2010
Compiled bv Mark ßrvanl
April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 5
0h Th£ w£8
Takc ThIs Jnb
and Gnng!c It
UNjnbs AssncIatInn nI Gcncva
http://unjobs.org/
I
s il lime lo vork in lhe Ii|i Islands` Hov aboul Rome`
If lhe climale and cuisine are failing vou in vour currenl
dulv slalion, lhe boss is gelling annoving and vour
brillianl skill sel is underapprecialed, il mighl be lime lo casl
lhe nel for a beller posilion.
UN|obs.org is a cenlral dalabase for hundreds of |obs in
inlernalional organizalions. Vacancies can be vieved bv
counlrv, organizalion, and nev lislings.
There is also a search box in lhe upper-righl corner lo
allov anv speciallv or parliculars lo be found. Thousands
of |obs and consullancies are covered, from being a cook in
Kabul lo a World Heallh Òrganizalion direclor in Geneva.
As for vhere vou vanl lo be based, choose from more lhan
2OO dulv slalions around lhe globe.
Clicking on a |ob lille brings up lhe delails aboul lhe
posilion, including responsibililies, requiremenls, and
applicalion deadlines. A nice louch is lhe Google map
presenled vilh each vacancv. This shovs vhere lhe
inlernalional schools, hospilals÷and golf courses÷are
localed near lhe posilion.
Lach |ob can be applied for online, so vour boss vill lhink
vou're vorking. No need lo vail nervouslv bv lhe shared
prinler for vour CV lo pop oul for mailing. Ioslings can also
be folloved using Tviller (hllp:]]lviller.com]UN|obs).
Keep an eve on vour ßlackberrv. Thal lveel for lhe Iaris |ob
mighl be minules avav. Q
A DIsastcr WaItIng
tn Haµµcn
AsIa Emcrgcncv and DIsastcr Maµ
http://h|sz.rsoe.hu/a|ertmap/|ndex2.php?area=as|a&|ang=eng
O
n a personal level, lhis vebsile is akin lo valching
a lrain vreck happen in slov molion: il's
uncomforlable, bul il's hard lo lurn avav.
Òn a professional level, il offers a quick overviev of
a range of disaslers unfolding in Asia and lhe resl of lhe
vorld. Landslides, volcanic eruplions, biological hazards,
epidemics, ßoods, droughls, heal vaves÷vou name il, il's
probablv happening somevhere.
A map al lhe lop of lhe sile lels vievers click on an arrav
of icons lo hnd oul vhal's happening vhere. Òflen lhe
delails are skelchv, bul lhere's usuallv enough informalion lo
see if one of vour pro|ecls or programs is in an affecled area
and vou need lo lroll for nevs arlicles elsevhere.
The sile's coverage is calegorized inlo currenl
emergencies, shorl-lerm and long-lerm evenls, lsunamis,
earlhquakes, lropical slorms, and aclive volcanoes. There is
even a supervolcano moniloring svslem (vhich uses Google
Larlh lo nice visual effecl, alloving users lo zoom in and oul
on supervolcanoes).
And for lhose vilh nol enough lo vorrv aboul, lhe bollom
of lhe sile has a delailed lisl of earlh-approaching ob|ecls÷
al leasl lhe ones knovn aboul in lhe nexl 3O davs. Reallv,
lhough, lhere are some evenls lhal one can prepare for, and
olhers lhal can onlv remind us lhal nolhing's invulnerable. Q
vvv.developmenl.asia
The Pace Of Infrastructure Development In Asia Depends On It
BY Ian Greer, Managing Director, Corporate and Government Ratings, Standard & Poor’s
Investor Comfort?
P
ost crisis, the idea of investor
comfort has been much
bandied about—hardly
surprising in a global market
in need of a panacea to soothe frayed
nerves and restore confidence. But when
it comes to infrastructure, we see investor
comfort not so much as panacea but
as paramount. In a region as diverse as
Asia, in which each country has specific
infrastructure needs and faces diferent
challenges, foreign private investment
is comparatively low and has been so
since the Asian Crisis of more than a
decade ago. Investors point to the need
for policymakers and regulators to create
attractive and rewarding operating
environments in which investors can
operate. Investors need to know that risk is
reasonably balanced against a transparent
and consistent regulatory environment
that is enforced in a fair manner and that
regulators have the resources and policy
support needed to meet global-best-
practice standards.
Diversity across Asia creates diverse
development needs
When discussing infrastructure in Asia,
it is important to take a granular view
of the region from the outset. Asia is not
homogeneous, nor are the development
needs and ambitions of its many countries.
India urgently requires basics such as
roads and power to maintain its strong
growth, while more advanced countries
such as Japan need to invest in upgrading
and replacing existing infrastructure.
General attitudes vary, too. China, Japan,
and Korea tend to be more outward
focused, keen to export their own skills
and equipment through investing in
infrastructure beyond their own borders.
Similarly, some countries have a need for
foreign investment if they are to maintain
their growth; here, private investment
is not an alternate form of procurement,
but instead fills a funding gap and enables
much-needed projects. Last year, for
example, India accounted for about 9%
of all global project finance. Across the
region there are also various levels of
skills and experience; some countries are
more willing to bring in and learn from
foreign expertise while others privilege
self-sufciency and prefer to learn from
their own mistakes. Finally, countries
themselves are granular; in India, for
instance, the variations are geographic
in that some states such as Gujarat and
Maharashtra have more-developed policy
environments to support infrastructure
spending than others.
Instead of dwelling on the existing
inadequacies that hamper infrastructure
investment in Asian countries to varying
degrees, we will focus here on the
institutions and practices that investors
have said they prefer any country to have—
and these are by no means exclusive to
Asia—in order for them to feel confident
enough to commit funds and to take
on risk. The urgency surrounding the
need for these conditions cannot be
overstated; it is by now a hackneyed
truism that infrastructure development
in Asia’s emerging economies is sorely
needed, and lots of it; by some estimates,
more than $700 billion is required per
year, from 2010 to 2020, to meet Asia’s
basic infrastructure needs. Megatrends
forecasted for the next few generations
will see population growth soften in the
world’s developed countries and rapidly
expand in emerging economies such as
those in Asia. In many countries, foreign
direct investment—and, indeed, active
involvement—in projects is essential to
support the pace of growth to fuel the
development required. The region’s public
sector, however, may not have the capacity
to fund all of it.
Pension funds are a good litmus test
Because pension funds have long-term
needs matched by infrastructure, we
believe that a salient question to ask
when assessing investor comfort is—
would a pension fund invest in this
project? Pension funds generally have
tightly regulated investment limits,
very conservative risk tolerances, and
will only become involved with soundly
creditworthy entities. And it is in pension
funds that a lot of Asia’s available savings
reside; indeed, a key issue for the region
is finding ways to unlock this money for
sound, long-term infrastructure projects.
While they already invest indirectly
through deposits with banks, this is
limited and being short-term means that
it’s not an ideal funding mechanism for
infrastructure. Creating direct investment
will stimulate a domestic capital market,
a goal for many Asian countries. Indeed,
when fundamentals such as good
creditworthiness are in place, funds
and infrastructure projects enjoy a very
close match of investment horizons. For
example, one such fund from Korea is
one of several co-investors in a landmark
desalination project in the Australian state
of Victoria. The attractions of this project
for such an investor include: tangible
state support, a strong and predictable
policy environment; the backing of a
diverse, international banking group
with experience in desalination and
project finance transactions; a similarly
well-credentialed equity group; and
$P0h$08£0 8Y $TAh0A80 & P008'$
an experienced and diversified design-
construct consortium.
Investor comfort can be enhanced by solid
institutional frameworks
To examine the fundamentals of investor
comfort more specifically, we believe
that the framework for creating favorable
conditions could well start at the
institutional level. These institutions can
be formal (constitutions, laws, regulatory
bodies and their mandates) and informal
(codes of conduct and cultural norms
and the like). A particularly important
recent trend is the expanding role local
governments are playing, as market
facilitators and as regulatory bodies
mandated to create fair and level playing
fields for infrastructure investors. As
investors have said time and again, a
project’s attractiveness depends heavily
on whether local authorities and those
appointed to implement regulations are
willing and able to do so without fear or
favour. No investment environment will
ever be free from the concerns of the real
and political world, but to attract funds—
domestic and foreign alike—investors will
want a system in which clarity, fairness,
and consistency form the bedrock on
which they can make decisions about
risk and reasonably predict returns.
The promise of recourse to proper
legal representation is also crucial;
jurisdictions in which contracts, for
example, are enforced fairly by the courts
are immediately more attractive to outside
investors.
More broadly, a key question for
those contemplating involvement in
any project is: who is looking after the
interests of investors? Before the global
financial crisis, monoline insurance
companies—whose sole business was
credit enhancement—provided not only
credit enhancement but also skills and
an alignment of interest with investors.
This produced an environment in which
pension funds could be unlocked and
which saw the creation of a capital market
in infrastructure debt. Similar structures
are now being investigated in Asia.
Investor comfort is obviously premised
on those involved in a project being
highly expert in their fields, but perhaps
less discernable at the outset is how
willingly those in authority (government,
legal, regulatory) are also prepared and,
indeed, mandated to assume ultimate
responsibility that lasts for the duration of
a project. Perhaps even more fundamental
is the question of whether those in
authority efectively have the power
and processes to make responsible and
relevant changes to legislation to create a
more enabling investment environment.
Also at the institutional level, the
involvement of multilaterals such as
the Asian Development Bank and the
World Bank, and other organisations
such as the Japan Bank for International
Cooperation and the Australian Agency
for International Advancement (AusAID),
can be an efective way to attract investors.
When these organisations lend their
names, their credit quality, and their
financing experience to projects—for
example, AusAID, the World Bank, and
ADB joining forces to help get a bridge
built in Vietnam’s Mekong Delta—the
financial management capacity of a project
is enhanced along with the level of comfort
investors will experience in committing
funds.
The way a country generally goes about
its business, while less clearly defined
than codified practices and institutional
frameworks, is no less important to
investor comfort. How transparent is the
bidding process? What are the grey areas?
Do government-related and other entities
operate at arm’s length from one another,
or are they inextricably entwined?
Investors are looking for environments in
which there’s a clear demarcation between
the private and public sectors, there’s
adequate transparency around sources
of funding, and where entities’ good
credit standing enables bond issuance to
flourish.
Early-support mechanisms also have their
place
A key final point is that, with scarce
resources, projects would logically be
selected based on carefully-thought-out
rationales and conceived of as part of a
larger and longer-term plan, rather than at
the suggestion of a private investor. This
will mean that from time to time projects
may need a boost to be commercially
viable enough to attract private funds.
Investors have found a degree of
comfort in early-support mechanisms
such as viability-gap funding, a partial
government subsidy used widely in India
and Korea that allows a project to get of
the ground and be commercially attractive.
And in Indonesia there’s the Indonesia
Infrastructure Guarantee Fund, which
is funded by the World Bank and set up
specifically to guarantee the government’s
ability to fulfil its obligations to a project.
The World Bank also wants the fund
to be a central analysis point to ensure
that the developments it enables have
strong business cases. While the long-
term attraction of infrastructure as an
asset class hinges on the evolution of
sophisticated and lasting institutions, the
pragmatics of shorter term solutions such
as viability gap funding and guarantee
funds cannot be overlooked as emerging
economies search for ways to lure investor
funds and unlock the region’s vast savings.
The private-sector funding of
infrastructure is not the panacea for
all problems, but by creating the right
investment environment many countries
have found other benefits such as the
creation of a domestic capital market.
Governments have reported that the
processes needed to attract private
funding have also improved general
government procurement and the efcient
allocation of funds. As Asia’s policymakers
and market participants look for viable
and sustainable ways to promote regional
growth in the wake of the global economic
downturn, policies and practices that
increase investor confidence will form an
increasingly important part of a shared
vision for Asia. ■
$P0h$08£0 8Y $TAh0A80 & P008'$
CONTACT
Ian Greer 613 9631 2032
ian_greer@standardandpoors.com
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8 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O
A GrnwIng Hungcr
Many regions are stricken by po||ution, |and degradation, and market dysfunction, yet new techno|ogies
and farming techniques and a recommitment to agricu|ture may save mi||ions from hunger
ßY ßruce Heilbulh
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vvv.developmenl.asia
WHOLESALE CHAOS PeopIe rush a
truck Ioaded with sacks of discounted
wheat in Pakistan in 2008.
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SNAPSHOTS
record cereal crops and good recenl rice
harvesls in Viel Nam and Thailand, lhe
supplv silualion is fragile and could
deleriorale again |usl as suddenlv.
Meanvhile, grovlh in produclion
vields is declining across Asia. During
lhe green revolulion of lhe 197Os and
198Os, increasing vields accounled
for aboul 7O/ of lhe grovlh in crop
produclion in developing counlries,
according lo lhe Iood and Agricullure
Òrganizalion of lhe Uniled Nalions
(IAÒ). ßul rice and grain vield grovlh
is nov slover lhan populalion grovlh,
a phenomenon lhal's been made vorse
bv lhe changing composilion of Asian
diels as consumers demand more meal
and dairv producls.
¨Since il lakes several kilograms of
grain lo produce 1 kilogram of meal,
lhis vill make il even more difhcull
for farmers lo keep pace vilh food
demand,¨ savs lhe IAÒ in a recenl
reporl.
Yel Asia's populalion is increasing
bv more lhan 1OO,OOO people a dav,
according lo lhe IAÒ. ADß eslimales
more lhan 5O/ of lhe vorld's groving
demand for food vill come from
Asia, vhile climale change fears make
prediclions of crop grovlh pallerns
increasinglv uncerlain. Al lhe same
lime, in lhe vords of Ioselle Sheeran,
execulive direclor of lhe Uniled
Nalion's World Iood Irogramme, ¨We
have÷in absolule numbers÷more
hungrv people lodav lhan ever before.¨
Take Hakeem-ud-din, vho lives
vilh his vife and four children on
an agricullural eslale belonging
lo a landovner near lhe lovn of
ßahavalpur in soulhern Iun|ab.
Meeling lheir food needs is a dailv
slruggle. In lheir hul, lhe familv shares
lhree rolis for lheir evening meal,
vhich lhev consume vilh a small
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 9
A
s lhese snapshols indicale,
all is nol vell vilh food
supplv svslems in Asia, lhe
region vhich, despile gains in poverlv
reduclion in recenl vears, remains
home lo lhe vorld's largesl share of
rural poor, according lo lhe Asian
Developmenl ßank (ADß). Thal's aboul
1.2 billion people vho spend on average
6O/ of lheir income on food.
Iood supplv securilv is a complex
lopic al lhe inlerseclion of manv
disciplines, and lhe faclors driving
food insecurilv in Asia are hugelv
diverse. While lhere are obviouslv no
simple, quick, one-size-hls-all solulions
for a region lhal includes 53 counlries,
mosl experls agree food availabililv
and safelv are issues of profound
concern.
Slill vivid are recolleclions of 2OO8,
vhen a ¨perfecl slorm¨ of surging
demand from lhe IRC and India, rising
fuel cosls, droughl-induced shorlages,
demand for crop-based biofuels, and
a declining US dollar caused food
commodilv prices lo rockel. Things
vere made vorse bv shorl-lerm
speculalive slocking decisions as
individual counlries lried lo address
lhe inslabililv bv reacling lo perceived
shorlages.
The 2OO8 spike has since subsided,
vel prices of rice, vheal, corn, and
edible oils remain vell above lhe levels
of 18 monlhs ago and are likelv lo
remain elevaled and volalile for vears
lo come, according lo an ADß reporl
in 2OO9. ¨This lhrealens lo exacerbale
poverlv in developing Asia bv reducing
lhe real incomes of lhe alreadv poor,
vhile pushing manv olhers belov lhe
poverlv line,¨ il savs.
PROBLEMS REMAIN
Òf parlicular concern lo Asian
governmenls and developmenl
agencies is lhal none of lhe underlving
agricullural problems lhal produced lhe
2OO8 emergencv has gone avav. Despile
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"We aInosI neter
hate enough Io eaI.
Mµ chlIdren ofIen crµ
because Iheµ´re hungrµ"
-Hakeem-ud-d|n, a farmer |n
southern Punjab
HARSH LANDSCAPE
A vegetabIe vendor pushes a
wheeIbarrow to a market in Bagram,
Afghanistan during winter. A recent
United Nations study shows that
Afghanistan, BangIadesh, Bhutan, India,
Iran, NepaI, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka are
Iosing at Ieast $10 biIIion annuaIIy or 7%
of the vaIue of South Asiaҋs agricuIturaI
output due to Iand degradation.
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responsible for food is a signihcanl
conlribulion lo lhe problem,¨ il savs.
Aggravaling mallers has been
videspread inerlia. Unlil 2OO8, Asian
governmenls had become complacenl
aboul lov food commodilv prices, savs
Kalsu|i Malsunami, ADß's praclice
leader and advisor on agricullure and
food securilv.
¨The long-lerm declining lrend in
agricullural inveslmenl, parlicularlv in
lending bv developmenl agencies and
inveslmenls in agricullural research,
clearlv allesls lo lhis complacencv,¨
savs Malsunami.
PROTECTIONISM
The specler of proleclionism among
Asian governmenls as a response lo
slaple food uncerlainlv is vel anolher
concern. Lvidence of a proleclionisl
mindsel is evervvhere. In 2OO8, lhe
Governmenl of India lemporarilv
banned lhe exporl of non-basmali rice
lo lrv and conlrol soaring domeslic
food cosls, vhile ßangladesh has
conlinued a ban on rice exporls for lhe
same reason.
The problem is vell underslood bv
lhe Associalion of Soulheasl Asian
Nalions (ASLAN), vhich recenllv
developed an Inlegraled Iood Securilv
plan supporled bv ADß. ¨There is
obviouslv a need lo invigorale rice
lrade as a secure vehicle for slabilizing
food prices and ensuring access,¨ savs
ADß in a recenl reporl.
The Uniled Nalions (UN) appears
lo agree. Iroleclionisl policies are
a prime cause of food insecurilv as
mosl counlries in lhe region meel
lheir nalional needs lhrough imporls,
according lo a sludv of lhe UN
Lconomic and Social Commission
for Asia and lhe Iacihc. Imporling
counlries use lrade as a lasl resorl,
conslraining lhe size of lheir respeclive
imporl demands and, accordinglv, lhe
exporl performance of counlries like
Thailand and Viel Nam.
ßeing able lo feed vour ovn people is
obviouslv a good lhing. ßul lhe desire
for self-sufhciencv is oflen accompanied
bv a groving dislrusl of markels, and
lrade and grain imporlers no longer lrusl
vorld markels lo supplv lheir needs,
reporls 1nc |ccncmisi.
¨Land grabbers are snapping up land
abroad lo use for food produclion,¨ il
savs. ¨Lvervvhere governmenls are
more involved in farming lhrough
inpul subsidies. In lhese condilions
self-sufhciencv could easilv sproul
proleclive valls. Thal vould be in
nobodv's inleresl.¨
helping of chili pasle and lenlils. ¨We
almosl never have enough lo eal,¨
Hakeem lold IRIN. ¨Mv children oflen
crv because lhev're hungrv.¨
Hakeem lills land on lhe eslale, in
exchange for vhich he collecls a small
vage and is given some produce,
usuallv vheal ßour.
SHORTSIGHTED VIEW
Despile counlless slories like lhis and
lhe lhreal of vorsening hunger, manv,
indeed mosl, Asian governmenls have
failed lo develop coherenl policies on
food securilv.
Generallv lhe componenls of
domeslic food programs are vrillen
under differenl chaplers of nalional
developmenl plans. This allovs
various deparlmenls lo go lheir
separale vavs vilh no coordinalion,
according lo Consumers Inlernalional,
a global end users' organizalion. ¨Iood
policv is enormouslv complex and lhe
lack of coordinalion among minislries
SLOW PROGRESS Farm Iaborers
transpIant seedIings in a rice ñeId
in Guizhou province in the PeopIeҋs
RepubIic of China. "Rice yieId growth
is now sIower than popuIation growth,"
says the Food and AgricuIture
Organization of the United Nations. After
a record 40% increase in production in
the past 50 years, technoIogicaI progress
in rice research seems to be sIowing
down.
of valer resources are also under
slress due lo expanding demands for
agricullural and induslrial uses and
urbanizalion.
A recenl sludv sponsored bv lhree
UN agencies (IAÒ, Uniled Nalions
Developmenl Irogramme, and Uniled
Nalions Lnvironmenl Irogramme)
eslimaled lhe severilv and cosls of
land degradalion resulling in complele
or parlial loss of produclive abililv in
Soulh Asia. Ils slaggering conclusion is
lhal Afghanislan, ßangladesh, ßhulan,
India, Iran, Nepal, Iakislan, and Sri
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 11
DEGRADED LAND÷ASIA'S BLIGHT
Land degradalion adds lo prospecls
of lover vields. Iressures on land,
foresl, valer, and aqualic resources in
Asia and lhe Iacihc are more severe
compared vilh olher regions of lhe
vorld, according lo lhe IAÒ.
An eslimaled 85O million heclares,
more lhan 28/ of lhe region's land, are
affecled bv some form of degradalion,
il savs. The qualilv and quanlilv
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BIOFUELS-BLIGHT OR BLESSING?
I
n a remole parl of India, lhe sun beals dovn on a
series of slagnanl lakes. The murkv valer is full
of algae÷linv planls lhal grov in sunlighl vhile
devouring carbon dioxide.
ßeside lhe ponds are a clusler of buildings and dislillalion
unils in vhich lhe algae are being processed. A ßeel of lrucks
comes and goes lo load lhe rehned producl, renevable
pelrol, for lransporling lo service slalions.
Il's nol science hclion. Il's alreadv happening al research
siles around lhe vorld. The California-based companv
Sapphire Lnergv, for example, is using sunlighl, carbon
dioxide, and non-polable valer lo lesl a nev generalion of
biofuels based on algae. The fuel lhev'll creale is renevable,
environmenl-friendlv, and in everv vav compalible vilh lhe
currenl gasoline economv, lhev sav.
In Asia, biofuels including elhanol and biodiesel made from
mainslream sources like grains and molasses are a relalivelv
nev componenl of lhe food supplv conundrum. Thev vere
once heralded as an allraclive, renevable allernalive lo fossil
fuels, bul nov urban planners are less sure.
Iroblems vilh biofuels have become increasinglv evidenl.
Rising fuel prices coupled vilh legislalive mandales and
subsidies lo increase produclion of biofuels in counlries such as
lhe Uniled Slales and Auslralia have eslablished a link belveen
pelroleum and lhe cosl of food. Soaring vorld demand for
grain has helped push up commodilv prices and seen an
increase in agricullural land allocaled lo biofuels produclion.
Therefore biofuels represenl a paradox. Thev're an
opporlunilv for poor farmers bul a challenge for lhe hungrv
because lhev push up food prices. The IAÒ acknovledges
lhis, recenllv revieving biofuel slralegies for lhe Mekong
della region lo assess lheir likelv impacl on poverlv.
¨The impacl of biofuels demand is vorrisome indeed,¨
il noles. ¨And lhis doesn'l even lake inlo accounl lhe
environmenlal deslruclion lhal vill occur if more foresls are
cleared for oilseed produclion in Asia.¨
In lhe absence of subsidies, much of lhe vorld's currenl
biofuels produclion mighl nol be compelilive because
of produclion cosls. In cases vhere biofuel produclion is
compelilive even vilhoul governmenl supporl, lhe IAÒ
suggesls governmenls inlervene bv regulaling land use lo
improve food securilv for lhe poor. (The IRC, for example,
has banned lhe use of grains for elhanol produclion.)
Neverlheless, researchers sav biofuels can'l be vrillen
off. Soon nev lov-cosl lechnologies and vork on second-
generalion fuels÷made from algae and anv organic malerial
including sugar cane bagasse, leaves, and even garbage÷
mav offer more hope for manv rural Asian farmers. ■
WINNING THE WAR AGAINST HUNGER
"I strongIy beIieve we can beat hunger,
but we have to depIoy not onIy aII of the
science and technoIogy at our disposaI,
but aIso the poIiticaI wiII to do so," says
Executive Director of the United Nationsҋ
WorId Food Programme Josette Sheeran.
emergencv silualions, vilh ASLAN
so far releasing for humanilarian
assislance needs in Cambodia,
Indonesia, Mvanmar, and lhe
Ihilippines. ¨ADß vill help ASLAN+3
eslablish an efhcienl and suslainable
business model,¨ savs Malsunami.
PHYSICAL ACCESS
Improving phvsical accessibililv lo
food should be a priorilv spend, mosl
agencies acknovledge. Wilhoul reliable
markels, farmers have lillle incenlive
lo grov more. Thal's vhv lhe public
monev being spenl on safelv-nel
programs for poor farmers vill onlv be
effeclive if il improves farmers' access
lo markel.
Il's a bigger problem in Soulheasl
Asia lhan |usl aboul anvvhere else.
The Lao Ieople's Democralic Republic
is one example, ADß acknovledges,
vilh high levels of malnulrilion. Manv
people live in remole areas, and in
lovland areas, vhal food is produced
can'l easilv be dislribuled because
of phvsical markel conslrainls and
underdeveloped lransporl svslems.
The inlraclabililv of lhis problem is
also evidenl in lhe Ihilippines, vhere
feudal and semifeudal produclion
melhods predominale, according lo
Consumers Inlernalional. Ioverful
privale merchanls somelimes diclale lhe
movemenl of lhe rice price al farm and
relail levels, ¨bul lhe lendencv arises
mainlv because of inadequale public
spending lo help farmers gain access lo
markels lhrough roads and credil.¨
As a priorilv, ADß and olher
organizalions have ßagged road
building as crucial, commending
inilialives like lhal of Svilzerland,
under vhich a governmenl agencv has
vorked vilh lhe Governmenl of Nepal
lo provide more lhan 4,OOO Nepalese
vilh vork everv vear bv emploving
lhem on road-building pro|ecls.
THE BIOTECHNOLOGY SOLUTION
Allaining a food-supplv panacea
in a conlinenl so vasl and disparale
signs of hope.
Lven lhe mosl pessimislic
commenlalors can'l denv lhe recenl
pricing crisis has |olled governmenls,
companies, and inlernalional aid
organizalions oul of lheir lelhargv.
Monev is again ßoving inlo
agricullure.
Al lheir meeling in Ilalv lasl vear,
G8 nalions commilled lo mobilizing
$2O billion over 3 vears lo help
farmers in lhe developing vorld boosl
produclion÷videlv seen as in|ecling
fresh momenlum inlo lhe seclor. ADß
ilself increased ils inveslmenls in food
securilv lo $2 billion lasl vear vhile
manv developing Asian counlries are
pledging lo spend more.
In India, for example, vhere lhe
rice and cane crops vere ravaged bv
monsoons in 2OO9, lhe governmenl
announced in December lhal il
inlended lo sharplv increase public
spending on agricullure, especiallv
irrigalion and lechnologv, lo raise
oulpuls.
Some ofhcial responses lo lhe
food securilv issue are causing
more concerns lhan relief÷like
lrade reslriclions and foreign land
grabbing÷bul olhers shov good
polenlial, like privale seclor÷led
inilialives lo link small-scale farmers
lo markels and regional food securilv
inilialives, savs ADß's Malsunami.
EMERGENCY RICE RESERVE
Òne of lhe mosl promising of lhe
laller is an underlaking of ASLAN
lo eslablish lhe ASLAN+3 (lhe IRC,
Iapan, and lhe Republic of Korea)
emergencv rice reserve. A pilol pro|ecl
of lhis kind has alreadv been sel up
vilh lhe help of lhe Governmenl of
Iapan. All members of ASLAN are
commilled lo expanding lhis inlo a
more permanenl scheme.
The reserve is held in lhe form of
earmarked slocks, nov increased
lo more lhan 9OO,OOO lons of rice as
commilled bv member counlries.
Access lo slocks is available in
Lanka are losing al leasl $1O billion
annuallv as a resull. This is equivalenl
lo 2/ of lhe region's gross domeslic
producl, or 7/ of lhe value of ils
agricullural oulpul.
Lnvironmenlal disasler areas
have occurred alreadv, lhe sludv
concludes÷for example, areas of
exlensive salinizalion in parls of lhe
irrigaled Indus and Ganges plains.
¨Òlhers are predicled, mosl nolablv
lhe severe deforeslalion and valer
erosion in lhe mounlain and hill areas
of Nepal.¨
POISONED FOOD
The issue of food safelv is inexlricablv
linked lo food supplv and land
degradalion, as ADß has seen in
sludies shoving lhal careless safelv
praclices can have a grim human
cosl. Wilh induslrial developmenl
happening in manv parls of Asia vilh
minimal÷even no÷conlrol, lhere's
no limil on hov polluled agricullural
lands close lo induslrv can become.
A recenl sludv conducled in Viel
Nam, ciled bv ADß, shovs lhal an
incredible 91.5/ of food and vegelables
grovn in rural areas are conlaminaled
bv heavv melals, slandards lhal
apparenllv vouldn'l be much differenl
in manv parls of Asia. In ßangladesh,
a 2OO9 governmenl survev found lhal
peslicide-relaled poisoning is a leading
cause of dealh. Il recorded 7,438
peslicide-relaled dealhs al more lhan
4OO hospilals nalionvide.
Llsevhere, as in Thailand, anecdolal
evidence galhered bv ADß indicales
some farmers admil lhev don'l eal lhe
vegelables lhev produce vilh lhe aid of
spravs. Thev have lheir ovn plols for
lheir ovn lables.
HOPEFUL SIGNS
So, among a plelhora of problems, can
Asia averl anolher food crisis` Though
vorld food prices seem unlikelv lo
relurn lo lhe declining lrend seen
belveen lhe mid-197Os and lhe hrsl
fev vears of lhis cenlurv, lhere are
12 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O
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¨ßl rice has. made progress,¨ savs
lhe IAÒ reporl, ¨bul il has slill nol
been approved for commercial release
in lhe IRC. This poinls lo lhe need for a
comprehensive biosecurilv framevork
lhal supporls lhe inlroduclion of safe
nev varielies vilh lhe polenlial for
increasing lhe produclivilv of farmers.¨
COOPERATIVE EFFORTS
Helping Asia's farmers pool lheir
resources can resull in beller
produclion lechniques and rescue
manv from poverlv, according lo IIAD.
Ganesh Thapa, an IIAD regional
economisl for Asia and lhe Iacihc,
believes one vilal role of bodies like IIAD
should be lo supporl small-scale farmers
in making lhe shifl from lradilional (such
as rice and vheal) lo high-value (fruil
and vegelables) crops and allov lhem
lo produce in quanlilies lhal can meel
demands from urban supermarkels.
The polenlial is enormous, as shovn bv
lhe grovlh of companies like Lianhua,
lhe IRC's biggesl supermarkel chain.
Such companies have developed
sophislicaled, high-volume dislribulion
svslems.
¨This can besl be done bv organizing
farmers inlo cooperalive groups so lhev
can cul cosls and demand a guaranleed
price,¨ savs Thapa. ¨Il's happening
in parls of Thailand, lhe Ihilippines,
and India, vilh smaller farmers
increasinglv selling lo supermarkels.¨
Anolher developmenl Thapa and
his colleagues vould like lo encourage
in Asia is conlracl farming. Irivale
agribusinesses provide seed, ferlilizer,
lechnical assislance, and a guaranleed
price al harvesl, vhich improves
incenlives and reduces risk for small-
scale farmers. ¨Il's happening in lhe
IRC, especiallv vilh dairv and poullrv
farming,¨ savs Thapa.
Smallholders, vhen organized inlo
groups, have obvious advanlages
such as familv labor and good qualilv
produclion, and lhev're ßexible
seems unlikelv anv lime soon, bul
some experls sav lhe besl hope for
feeding Asia's millions inlo lhe fulure
lies in nev lechnologv, specihcallv
biolechnologv, an area in vhich lhe
privale seclor has plaved a ma|or role.
Genelicallv modihed organisms,
or GMÒ crops, are conlroversial: vel
adoplion of lhese crops bv farmers has
grovn rapidlv over lhe pasl decade.
Mosl grovlh has occurred oulside
Asia, bul ßl collon, a genelicallv
modihed planl resislanl lo pesls, has
proved a favorile in lhe IRC and India.
An eslimaled 6.4 million farmers in
lhe IRC and a million in India are
groving ßl collon, according lo a
reporl bv lhe UN's Inlernalional Iund
for Agricullural Developmenl (IIAD).
In lhe Ihilippines, 5O,OOO farmers are
groving ßl maize.
Òlher possibililies include golden
rice, vhich could reduce vilamin A
dehciencv among lhe poor, and C4 rice,
vhich holds oul lhe promise of higher
vields, lover produclion cosls per lon,
reduclion in lhe need for peslicides
and ferlilizer, and increased valer use
efhciencv. Some varielies are alreadv
shoving promise.
STOCKING UP Farmers pack rice into
sacks at a warehouse in Hubei province.
The PeopIeҋs RepubIic of China has
approved geneticaIIy modiñed varieties
of rice in a move that experts say couId
dramaticaIIy boost crop yieIds and heIp
the worIdҋs most popuIous nation avoid
food shortages.
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 13
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moulh and never grev enough rice lo
lasl lhem a vear vilhoul borroving
from olher communilies.
Tradilionallv, lhese lribal farmers
pracliced a svslem knovn as jnum. This
involved clearing and burning nev land
for cullivalion everv fev vears, lhen
moving on lo allov lhe land lo lie fallov.
In moderalion, il vas suslainable, bul
increasinglv large-scale jnum cullivalion
failed lo meel food requiremenls and pul
pressure on resources.
¨I knov all aboul food securilv,¨
savs Milharam Maslai, a farmer from
Khvarakai village. ¨I remember lhe
davs vhen ve ale onlv pumpkin and
bamboo shools everv vear for 2 lo 3
veeks because ve'd run oul of rice.¨
Then an IIAD-funded pro|ecl
inlroduced a nev land managemenl
model lo lhe area. In six dislricls across
lhe slales of Meghalava, Manipur, and
Assam, experls helped locals vork
differenllv. Thev lrained lhem in beller
farming lechniques, soil and valer
conservalion, and crop diversihcalion.
Thev also crealed vildlife and hsh
sancluaries and limber reserves.
Terracing has been inlroduced,
alloving farmers lo grov cash crops
vilhoul lhe need for jnum. The resull`
Villagers have seen an improvemenl
in produclivilv, earn more, have more
nulrilious meals, and lheir children
are heallhier. Wilh less pressure lo
produce more food, communilies no
longer need lo slrip foresls.
¨We have enough food vear round,¨
savs Maslai. ¨Iusl lasl vear I made
15,OOO rupees selling 1.5 lons of chilies,
in addilion lo groving vegelables and
raising callle.¨
The mosl imporlanl aspecl of lhe
pro|ecl is lhal il has given people lhe
capacilv lo plan and manage lheir ovn
livelihoods, savs Mallia Iraver Gallelli,
IIAD counlrv program manager for
India. ¨This makes lhe pro|ecl's
efforls lrulv suslainable,¨ she savs.
And lhal, according lo economisls, is
lhe kind of achievemenl lhal should be
celebraled and copied, again
and again. ■
enough lo be able lo rolale crops
easilv. ¨Il's nol vilhoul problems÷
agreemenls aren'l alvavs honored÷
bul lhe advanlages oulveigh lhe
disadvanlages,¨ savs Thapa.
WANTED: LEADERSHIP
Much can be achieved bv vell-meaning
organizalions prepared lo make lhe lime
and efforl lo leach rolalional and olher
lechniques and lhe dangers of over-
using peslicides lo rural people vho are
prepared lo embrace nev lechnologies,
savs Thapa. ßul ullimalelv lhe mosl
imporlanl faclor in rescuing Asia from a
hungrv fulure vill be lhe delerminalion
and commilmenl of governmenls.
¨I slronglv believe ve can beal
hunger,¨ lhe World Iood Irogramme's
Sheeran savs in a recenl inlerviev, ¨bul
ve have lo deplov nol onlv all of lhe
science and lechnologv al our disposal,
bul also lhe polilical vill lo do so.¨
Adds ADß's Malsunami: ¨Ullimalelv
lhe buck slops vilh Asian governmenls
and lheir agencies. Anv program lhal
is nol ovned and led bv lhe counlrv is
doomed lo fail.¨
Like manv of his colleagues,
Malsunami sees bevond lhe problems
lo lhe possibililies. When small-
scale farmers and enlrepreneurs are
encouraged lo pool lheir experlise and,
above all, shovn hov lo make a decenl
prohl oul of food, lhev'll succeed, he
believes.
¨Iood securilv is nol |usl aboul
ample supplv, il's ullimalelv
making sure lhal lhere is suslainable
availabililv and access, especiallv for
lhe poor in rural and increasinglv in
urban areas,¨ he savs.
¨There are hundreds of small success
slories all over Asia lhal demonslrale
lhis can be done. Il's up lo us lo dig lhese
slories up and lell olhers hov lhev did il.
Then ve can lurn hope inlo praclice.¨
LIVING PROOF
Unlil a fev vears ago, in lhe lush hills
and highlands of norlheaslern India,
indigenous local people lived hand lo
FRAGILE RICE A farmer carries rice for
pIanting in YaIa province in ThaiIand.
Despite record cereaI crops and good
recent rice harvests in ThaiIand and Viet
Nam, Asiaҋs top exporters, the suppIy
situation remains fragiIe and couId
deteriorate again just as suddenIy, say
anaIysts.
Some
solutions
for
climate
change
...really do
grow on trees
Climate change endangers all living things. The loss of forestland
contributes greatly to the problem. Plants breathe carbon dioxide,
making forests natural carbon storehouses. Unfortunately, cutting
trees causes as much as 20% of all greenhouse gas emissions.
Forest degradation contributes emissions as well.
A global forest carbon market is proposed to arrest deforestation by
compensating developing countries for conserving their forests.
This would generate billions of dollars in new funding for rural
development and environmental management under the scheme of
Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD).
ADB supports pilot activities developing this approach in the
People’s Republic of China, Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic,
the Philippines, Thailand, and Viet Nam. Trees are our friends.
Helping save them is one of the many strategic actions ADB is taking in
the fight against climate change.
www.adb.org
30%
30%
35%
35%
37%
39%
39%
40%
40%
44%
45%
46%
48%
48%
49%
50%
51%
52%
54%
54%
59%
60%
64%
70%
70%
71%
PERCENTFORFOOD REMAINING
FamI!vExµcndIturcnnFnnd
InmanvdevelopingnalionsinAsia,foodislhema|orilvof
householdconsumplion.Thesefigurespredalelhe2OO7–2OO8
foodpricecrisis,vhichsavpricesincreasebvmorelhan6O/in
lesslhanavearandahalf.
Food-consumption portion of total household consumption expendi-
ture; includes goods bought or otherwise acquired and excludes
non-consumption items. Most recent data.
Ma|d|ves
T|mor-Leste
Uzbek|stan
Turkey
Ma|ays|a
Bhutan
Tha||and
Sr|Lanka
PRC
Tonga
Kazakhstan
Ph|||pp|nes
Pak|stan
Indones|a
Samoa
Ind|a
V|etNam
LaoPDR
Bang|adesh
Armen|a
Nepa|
Azerba|jan
Georg|a
Myanmar
Taj|k|stan
Cambod|a
AWnr!dwIdcPrnb!cm
Almosllvo-lhirdsoflhevorld’s1.O2billionundernourishedlive
inAsiaandlheIacific.
Numberofundernour|shed
in 2009, by region
Sub-Saharan
Afr|ca:
265 million
As|aand
thePac|f|c:
642 million
Deve|opedcountr|es:
15 million
Lat|nAmer|ca/
Car|bbean: 53 million
NearEast/NorthAfr|ca:
42 million

$0II|c|eot
Lnoughqualilvfoodis
availableloallindividuals,
groups,andpopulalions
Access|b|e
Lconomic,legal,polilical,
social,orolhercondilionsdon’l
inlerferevilhaccesslofood
0sab|e
Condilionsincludingsanilalion
andheallhcareallovgood
nulrilionfromavailablefood
0epeodab|e
Ioodremainsavailableand
accessiblealalllimes,including
duringunusualevenls
PrIccSµIkcsThrcatcnFnndSccurItv
Thepriceoffooddirecllvaffeclsfoodsecurilv.The2OO7–2OO8
foodpricecrisisdrovelhepoorlodesperalemeasures.
Thougharapiddeclineinpricesbroughlrelief,sleep
increaseshaverelurned.
Feb.
2010:
169
Jan.
1990:
110
May
1990:
131
May
2002:
85
Feb.
2009:
139
June
2008:
213
F
o
o
d

P
r
|
c
e

I
n
d
e
x
75
100
125
150
175
200
225
1990 ’92 ’94 ’96 ’98 ’00
Year
’02 ’04 ’06 ’08 2010
FoodPr|ceIndex 1992-1994 = 100
Sources: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations; FAOSTAT; 2009 Global Hunger Index Report
16 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O vvv.developmenl.asia
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A secure food supp|y is.
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 17
GcndcrGaµandHungcr
IlollinglheGlobalGenderGapIndexandlhe
GlobalHungerIndexrevealslhecorrelalionbelveen
equalilvandhunger. Asian nations with data for both indices
AZE
ARM
BAN
CAM
PRC
GEO
MAL
KAZ
KGZ
IND
INO
MON
NEP
PAK
PHI
SRI
TAJ
THA
UZB
VIE
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
0.50 0.55 0.60 0.65 0.70 0.75 0.80
G
|
o
b
a
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H
u
n
g
e
r

I
n
d
e
x
G|oba|GenderGapIndex
B
E
T
T
E
R
BETTER
W
O
R
S
E
WORSE
Educat|onInd|cator
Wnmcn’sEducatInnandHungcr
Òflhefourindicalorsofgenderequalilv,educalional
allainmenlhaslheslrongeslcorrelalionvilhhunger.
BETTER WORSE
W
O
R
S
E
0.70 0.75 0.80 0.85 0.90 0.95 1.00
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
ARM
AZE
BAN
CAM
PRC
GEO
IND
INO
KAZ
KGZ
MAL
MON
NEP
PAK
PHI
SRI
TAJ
THA
UZB
VIE
G
|
o
b
a
|

H
u
n
g
e
r

I
n
d
e
x

Nepa|
20 0.59
Azerba|jan
8 0.69
Peop|e’sRepub||c
ofCh|na
6 0.69
Ind|a
24 0.61
Indones|a
15 0.65
Pak|stan
21 0.55
Bang|adesh
25 0.65
Ph|||pp|nes
13 0.76
V|etNam
12 0.68
Tha||and
8 0.69
Myanmar
20 –
Uzbek|stan
7 0.69
Ma|ays|a
Below 5 0.64
Sr|Lanka
14 0.74
Kazakhstan
Below 5 0.70
Cambod|a
21 0.65
Taj|k|stan
18 0.65
LaoPDR
19 –
KyrgyzRepub||c
Below 5 0.70 Turkmen|stan
6 –
Armen|a
9 0.67
Mongo||a
13 0.70
T|mor-
Leste
25 –
Georg|a
6 0.67
GcndcrEqua!Itv
andHungcr
InAsiaandacrosslhevorld,lhelessequalvomen
arevilhmeninacounlrv,lhevorsehungerlends
lobe.InSoulhAsia,equalizingvomen’sslalus
vouldreducelhenumberofmalnourishedchildren
bvmorelhan13million,accordingloasludvbvlhe
InlernalionalIoodIolicvResearchInslilule.
MEASURING EQUALITY
G!nba!GcndcrGaµIndcx
Assessesequalilvbelveen
vomenandmeninanalion,
basedoncomparisonsof:
■Lducalionalallainmenl
■Lconomicparlicipalion
■Iolilicalempovermenl
■Heallhandsurvival
MEASURING HUNGER
G!nba!HungcrIndcx
ßasedonanalion’s:
■Iroporlionofundernourished
peopleinlhelolalpopulalion
■Underveighlchildren
voungerlhan5vears
■Morlalilvraleamongchildren
voungerlhan5vears

RED: Global Hunger Index
BLUE:Global Gender Gap Index
KEYTOMAP
KEY TO
ABBREVIATIONS
ARM Armenia
AZE Azerbaijan
BAN Bangladesh
CAM Cambodia
PRC People’s
Republic
of China
GEO Georgia
IND India
INO Indonesia
LAO Lao People’s
PDR Democratic
Republic
KAZ Kazakhstan
KGZ Kyrgyz
Republic
MAL Malaysia
MON Mongolia
NEP Nepal
PAK Pakistan
PHI Philippines
SRI Sri Lanka
TAJ Tajikistan
THA Thailand
UZB Uzbekistan
VIE Viet Nam
RESEARCH AND DESIGN:MARKBLACKWELL
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Mnngcr

In an exc|usive interview, financier Jim Rogers,
bestse||ing author and outspoken commentator,
ana|yzes food security and commodities in Asia
ßY Lric Healv
F000 $£008|TY: Th£ 8|6 V0|0£
peddling his exercise bike poolside
al his home in a posh seclion of
Singapore. Through lhe hufhng and
svealing, lraces of an Alabama dravl
slill drip lhrough.
DA: Letҋs start with the generaI
outIook on crop inventories and
how growing demand in Asia wiII
affect food security issues.
JR: According lo lhe slalislics one
reads, lhe invenlories of food are
lhe lovesl lhev've been in decades
vorldvide because lhe vorld has
been consuming more lhan il's been
producing for several vears nov.
Nov lhal is going lo lead lo
problems, lhe likes of vhich none of
us has seen in our lifelime. We've had
localized famines and localized food
shorlages. ßul if vou read vour hislorv,
lhere vere periods vhen ve had food
shorlages vorldvide, for vhalever
reason. I'm afraid ve are aboul lo have
a period like lhal again because even if
lhings |usl conlinue lhe vav lhev are,
ve are going lo conlinue consuming
more lhan ve're producing.
And if ve slarl having |olher]
problems÷vealher, var, vhalever.
÷lhen lhe problems are going lo be
slupendous, and ve're going lo have
a period like ve've onlv read aboul in
vorld hislorv.
When lhal comes, vou are going
lo hear huge shrieks from polilicians
and |ournalisls and see riols and social
unresl aboul hov lhe poor cannol
afford food. And lhere vill even be
periods vhen lhev vill lrv lo suppress.
You'll have periods vhen lhev lrv
lo sel lhe price of food lov. ßul lhal is
going lo make lhe problems vorse: lhe
reason ve have shorlages is because
agricullure has been a horrible business
for 3O vears. Mosl farmers are old
men nov because il's been a lerrible
business. Nobodv in his righl mind
vould go inlo lhe farming business for
lhe mosl parl.
When lhese problems slarl coming,
lhev're going lo lasl longer lhan one
vould expecl because even if ve do
somehov gel produclion up enough,
il is going lo lake a vhile lo rebuild
invenlories.
Lvervbodv is going lo be screaming,
bul I promise vou lhal selling lhe price
or hxing lhe price is onlv going lo
make il vorse because lhe onlv vav
vou're going lo gel food is if people go
inlo lhe helds and farm. And people
are nol going lo go inlo lhe helds and
farm if lhev can sell lheir rice for onlv
one peso.
None of lhe polilicians are going lo
go oul lhere and vork 14 hours a dav
in lhe hol sun lo raise food for one
peso. None of lhe |ournalisls are going
lo go oul lhere and raise food so lhal
ve can have cheap caviar in Iaris or
cheap pûló in London. Thal's |usl nol
going lo happen.
So all of lhe lhings lhev are going
lo lrv are going lo make il vorse, and
lhis mav lurn inlo one of lhe vorsl
crises lhe vorld has seen in a long
lime. Governmenls vill be overlhrovn.
The IAÒ (Iood and Agricullure
Òrganizalion of lhe Uniled Nalions)
is going around lhe vorld righl nov
begging people lo lislen aboul lhe facl
lhal ve're running oul of food. In mv
viev, il's going lo be a nighlmare.
I have made inveslmenls in
agricullure, bul lhe people vho made
inveslmenls in agricullure are going
lo be scorned and ridiculed vhen il
happens. Thev're going lo blame lhe
problem on us. Thev're going lo sav,
¨You're prohling from lhis.¨
DA: Does that put you in a tight
spot taIking as an investor versus
taIking as a humanitarian?
JR: The humanilarian lerms are
lhal somebodv has gol lo invesl in
|agricullural businesses] or vou're
never going lo gel higher prices,
vhich means vou're never going lo
gel anv |more] farmers, vhich means
vou're never going lo gel anv food al
anv price.
Il's beller lo have expensive food
S
o much for quiel monev.
When legendarv hnancier
Iim Rogers does inlervievs,
he spares no one's feelings,
nol presidenls or prime minislers, nol
developers or developmenl agencies,
or even fellov media mavens.
Ònce labeled lhe ¨Indiana Iones
of hnance,¨ Rogers is an American
expalriale inveslor vho lives vilh his
vife and lvo daughlers in Singapore,
from vhere he runs an inlernalional
commodilv fund and makes
frequenl appearances vorldvide as
a high-dollar guesl speaker and as a
commenlalor on hnancial nelvorks. He
has aulhored hve books, all springing
from his passion for invesling, lhe
lalesl a legacv vork for his daughlers
aboul lessons of life and invesling.
Al 67, Rogers has lraveled around
lhe vorld lvice, bolh lrips lhe sub|ecls
of beslselling books÷|ntcsimcni Bikcr
and A!tcniurc Ccpiic|isi. He made lhe
Guinncss Bcck cj Wcr|! Rcccr!s in lhe
hrsl lrip, 1OO,OOO miles lhrough six
conlinenls on a molorcvcle. He lraded
lhe bike for a cuslom canarv vellov
Mercedes for lhe second lrip lhrough
116 counlries.
Rogers's rise lo prominence began
vhen he co-founded lhe Òuanlum
Iund in 197O vilh alreadv-famous
hnancier George Soros. Òver lhe nexl
decade, lhe inlernalional porlfolio
gained more lhan 4,OOO/ vhile lhe US
slock markel (Slandard & Ioor's Index)
gained less lhan 5O/. He celebraled
his success in 198O bv reliring lo lravel
and vrile÷all lhe vhile invesling and
opining÷and be a guesl professor of
hnance al lhe Columbia Universilv
Graduale School of ßusiness.
Rogers vas born in Marvland
and raised in Alabama. He earned
bachelor's degrees from bolh Yale
and Òxford during lhe 196Os,
before enlisling in lhe US Armv.
Slill mililarislic÷al leasl in his
scheduling÷Rogers made lime for
an inlerviev vilh Dctc|cpmcni Asic
Managing Ldilor Lric Healv vhile
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 19
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a lol of monev.somedav. And lhal
somedav is gelling closer and closer. So
some people are going around buving
land, hxing il up, and lurning il inlo
produclive farm land. And lhev'll
make a lol of monev if lhev're righl.
ßul lhen lhe polilicians are going
lo sav, ¨You horrible, evil speculalors.
You're making monev off human
miserv.¨ ßul lhal's one of lhe lhings
happening. Ieople are |also] invesling
in machinerv, lechnologv, elc..
The Chinese, as vou knov, are going
around lhe vorld buving farms, as
are Middle Laslerners, lhe Koreans..
Singapore is lhinking aboul il.
DA: That has been a contentious
issue. For exampIe, there was a recent
fIap in Madagascar over a foreign
bid to purchase farmIands there.
JR: Iood is a lerriblv emolional lhing. In
Madagascar, lhev have decided lhal il is
beller nol lo have food ralher lhan lel lhe
¨evil capilalisls¨ produce lhe food.
Thal's vhal I am lrving lo explain:
lhe reaclion vill gel vorse as lhe
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silualion gels vorse. ßul lhal's going lo
make lhings vorse ralher lhan beller.
There vere lens of lhousands of
heclares in Madagascar lhal lhe
Koreans vere going lo lurn inlo
nev and produclive farmland. Nov
il's going lo lie lhere, and il's nol
going lo be nev and produclive and
developed farmland. Who's beller
off vilh lhal kind of silualion` I
don'l see lhal anvbodv is beller
off. ßul obviouslv lhere are people
in Madagascar vho lhink lhal
Madagascar is beller off nol having
|obs, nol having produclive farmland,
and nol producing more food.
When polilicians slarl slirring
up emolions, il's easv lo do so.
Whelher il's lo sav, vou musl die
for vour religion, or vou musl die
for vour counlrv, or vou musl drive
lhe foreigners oul because lhev're
evil. These are prellv easv lhings
for polilicians lo exploil lhroughoul
hislorv.
Unforlunalelv, lhal's |usl lhe
vav people have alvavs been. I am
lhan no food because lhe onlv vav vou
are going lo gel food |inexpensivelv] is
lo have expensive food hrsl. There's an
old saving in anv markel: lhe solulion
for high prices is high prices.
If vou have lhe high prices, lhen
more people become farmers. Ieople
converl lheir golf courses inlo helds÷
collon or corn helds÷because lhev can
make monev al il. Righl nov, lhe corn
helds are being lurned inlo golf courses
or resorls because lhere is no monev in
vheal, lhere's no monev in rice.
ßul vhen vou have high prices,
people slop ealing as much, slop
consuming as much, and produclion
goes up.
I knov lhev vill alvavs curse lhe
evil speculalors: lhev're going lo call
lhem ¨evil speculalors.¨ If lhev didn'l
have inveslors, lhen lhev vouldn'l
have anv food because none of lhem
are going lo go inlo lhe helds and
vork, and none of lhem are going lo
pul lheir monev al risk lo lrv lo help
increase lhe produclion of food.
I undersland il. Il happened lo lhe
oil companies vhen lhe price of oil
venl up. Lvervbodv said, ¨All ve need
lo do is lax lhe oil companies.¨ Well,
lhal's nol going lo bring anv more oil
lo lhe counlrv. Thal's nol going lo pul
anv gasoline in vour fuel lank, laxing
oil companies. Thal's going lo lead
lo less oil, less fuel in vour lank. ßul
lhal's alvavs lhroughoul hislorv been
lhe emolional response, and il vill be
again. Iood is even more emolional
lhan oil for obvious reasons.

DA: Youҋve spoken directIy to a Iot
of agribusiness firms and seen the
inside view as an investor. What
do you see as the most promising
deveIopments in agribusiness?
JR: If evervlhing I've lold vou is
correcl, lhen farmers are going lo make
F000 $£008|TY: Th£ 8|6 V0|0£
NAP TIME A porter takes a rest in a truck
Ioaded with wheat at a market in KoIkata,
India.
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 21
(IRC)], lolallv ruined il. |The IRC] had
fed ilself more or less for cenluries,
lhen along came Mao Tse Tung and
deslroved |IRC] agricullure in manv
vavs.
|The IRC] knovs lhal. Thev're doing
evervlhing, spending huge amounls
of monev. Òne of lhe ma|or lhrusls of
governmenl nov is lo revilalize and
rebuild agricullure. Thev are giving
huge incenlives, giving pavmenls lo
do vhalever lhev can. And al lhe same
lime, lhev are buving farms around lhe
vorld.
Thev see vhal I see. Òr lhev lhink
lhev see vhal I lhink I see, and lhev
knov lhev've gol lo be self-sufhcienl in
food again, more lhan self-sufhcienl, in
facl. Thev've gol a booming economv
and people are ealing. Thev like ealing
chicken everv veek nov inslead of once
a vear or once a lifelime. Thev like pork.
Thev like having more lhan one shirl.
As I've said before, agricullure is
going lo be one of lhe greal seclors
of lhe nexl couple of decades, |IRC]
agricullure especiallv, because lhe
governmenl is doing evervlhing lhev
can lo help vou, lo help lhe seclor.
I am oplimislic aboul invesling in
agricullure in |lhe IRC], more lhan
in manv counlries, because lhev are
laking lhe righl allilude÷as opposed
lo lhe Indians vho, vhen prices go
up, slap lhem dovn. Thev von'l lel
farmers buv farms. Who can buv a
lraclor if vou onlv have 5 heclares`
|The IRC] is supporling people lo
become more mechanized, elc.
Look, lhis bull markel in food is
going lo end somedav. Al leasl il
alvavs has. Unforlunalelv, somedav
mav be a long lime avav because
governmenls keep messing il up. ßul
somedav, |lhe IRC] and manv olher
counlries are going lo be exlremelv
produclive in agricullure again and
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Auslralia or Argenlina` Thev make il
so absurd. Then vhen lhe prices slarl
going up, lhev sel lhe prices.
The number of Indian farmers vho
commil suicide is appalling. ßecause
everv lime lhings are going righl, lhe
governmenl sleps in, slops il, so lhal
lhe people in Mumbai can have cheap
rice or vhalever il is lhev vanl lo eal in
Mumbai.
You have Indian farmers acluallv
moving up inlo Cenlral Asia and
buving farms because lhev are good
farmers: bul in India, lhev cannol
accumulale a lol of heclares.
Il's nol like in Iapan vhere vou
have a problem vilh aging farmers. In
Iapan, lhev have huge helds lhal are
lving emplv because lhe farmers are
old. The kids have moved lo lhe cilv lo
become slockbrokers. You've gol lhese
huge lands, and lhere are no farmers.

DA: And what about the Chinese strategy
to boIster the agricuIture sector?
JR: Mao Tse Tung ruined agricullure
in |lhe Ieople's Republic of China
nol picking on lhe people of 2O1O.
Il's happened lhroughoul hislorv,
lhroughoul lhe vorld. And il's going lo
gel vorse.
DA: When you Iook around Asia and
countriesҋ strategies to deaI with
Iooming food security issues, what
countries jump out at you and why?
JR: India should be lhe vorld's
premier agricullural nalion, even
beller lhan America. Thev've gol
lhe land, huge amounls of heclares.
I lhink lhev have lhe second-largesl
number of producible heclares in
lhe vorld. Thev've gol lhe vealher.
Thev've gol lhe labor. Thev've gol
evervlhing.
Yel lheir lavs |make farming
unlenable]. In India, il is illegal for
an Indian farmer lo ovn more lhan 5
heclares. Nov hov in lhe hell is an
Indian farmer vilh 5 heclares going
lo compele vilh a ßrazilian farmer
vilh 5,OOO or 5O,OOO heclares or an
American farmer vilh 25,OOO heclares
or vhalever lhe number is vherever in
LOOKING FOR BARGAINS A consumer
Iooks at a biIIboard showing the prices of
food at a supermarket in Shanghai, the
PeopIeҋs RepubIic of China.
DA: What roIe do you see internationaI
deveIopment organizations and
aid agencies pIaying in heIping
deveIop the agricuIture sector?
JR: |Inlernalional developmenl
agencies] can educale governmenls
and farmers. Thev can educale lhe
Governmenl of India aboul lhe need
lo have an efhcienl agricullure seclor,
so lhal vour farmers can lhrive inslead
of commilling suicide bv lhe hour. You
can leach farmers nev and modern
melhods. You can provide hnance:
righl nov, manv farmers cannol gel
loans for ferlilizer because no one is
giving loans lo anvbodv.
There are so manv lhings lhal can be
done. Unforlunalelv, il's rare lhal aid
agencies gel il righl. Thev're cerlainlv
nol efhcienl. Thev spend giganlic
amounls of monev and lhe resulls are
nol verv greal, for all lhe monev lhev
spend.
I've lraveled around lhe vorld
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22 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O vvv.developmenl.asia
lvice nov and I have seen hundreds,
lhousands of aid pro|ecls lhal |usl make
vour hearl veep because somebodv
spenl a vhole lol of monev once upon
a lime and il's all crumbling nov
because il vas spenl on lhe vrong
lhings al lhe vrong lime in lhe vrong
vav. The vorld vould have been beller
off if ve'd |usl laken all lhal monev
and given il oul per capila. Thal's nol
reallv anv good eilher lhough because
vou've gol lo leach a man lo hsh if vou
vanl lo do him anv good.
I vas in Llhiopia once on markel
dav, and ve sav all of lhese donkevs
come lo lovn emplv. Thal vas lhe dav
lhal lhe food from agencv X shoved up
and vas dislribuled, so lhev all venl
and gol lheir big huge bags of food and
pul lhem on lheir donkevs and look
lhem home. Some of lhem look lheir
sacks of food dovn lo lhe markel and
sold lhem. Il vas all free food being
dislribuled.
going lo have greal farmers vho are
rich and ovn vasl heclares, and ve're
going lo be producing a lol of food
again. ßul I'm afraid lhal's a long vav
from nov.
DA: Backing up a IittIe, how do you
expIain commodities and commodity
pricing-that is, what you do-to
nonfinance peopIe, to your young
daughters, for exampIe?
JR: I lrv lo explain lo Happv (born in
2OO3) and ßabv ßee (born in 2OO8) hrsl
of all lhev need lo save up lheir assels,
lheir monev, so lhal vhen lhev see
somelhing lhev vanl lo buv, lhev have
lhe monev lo buv il.
If lhev go lo lhe shop and lhev vanl lo
buv candv or ice cream÷vhich ve don'l
lel lhem buv verv oflen÷if lhere's nol
enough ice cream in lhe shop, lhen lhe
price of ice cream is going lo be verv high
because lhere's a lol of.kids vho vanl
lo buv ice cream.
Thal's exacllv lhe vav commodilv
prices are. Ieople vho have saved up
vhen lhere are shorlages can pav and
vill pav higher prices for food because
lhev vanl lo eal. Ieople vho haven'l
saved are going lo hnd lhemselves
slruggling and slarving.Cerlainlv ve
feel sorrv for lhe people vho are going
lo suffer bul vhal are ve going lo do`
We can'l feed evervone in lhe vorld
because lhe vorld doesn'l have enough
monev for lhal, unless lhe |ournalisls
and all lhe polilicians are going lo go
inlo lhe helds and vork for nolhing, so
lhal lhe resl of us can have all lhe pûló
ve vanl (laughing).
I'm |usl making lhe poinl lhal lhis
has been lried. The communisls lried
il. Thev said, ¨Òk, evervone go inlo
lhe helds and vork, so ve can all have
cheap food.¨ The resull vas lhev ran
oul of food, ran oul of farmers, and lhe
vhole svslem collapsed.
F000 $£008|TY: Th£ 8|6 V0|0£
FOOD LINE PeopIe Iine up to receive
food donated by a weIfare trust in Lahore,
Pakistan.
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 23
benefit because of its abiIity to ramp
up production in a short period with
access to the Iatest technoIogy,
strong mechanization, etc.?
JR: America does produce a lol of
agricullural producls. Thev are nol
economicallv compelilive. Il's done
because lhev subsidize lhe farmers. ßul
lhe farmers do knov hov lo produce a
lol of sluff.
The infraslruclure is in place:
lraclors, railroads, highvavs, elc..
ßul vou have lo remember lhal vhen
people have farms and prices are
lov, lhe land lhev leave fallov is lhe
marginal land.
Then vhen prices go up and lhev
bring in nev acres, nev heclares, il's
marginal. If vou double lhe heclares,
vou don'l double produclion because
vou are bringing in lhe marginal land.
Il's nol quile lhal simple.
And of course, even good land gels
vorn oul. Land does become less
produclive. Il vears oul, like people
vear oul.
ßul America has gol lhe infraslruclure.
If lhe prices go lhrough lhe roof,
America is going lo benehl because ve
can increase produclion. India cannol
increase produclion lhal fasl, even if
lhev lel lhe farmers have 1OO heclares.
Thev gol lo gel |lhe land]: lhev've gol
lo prepare il, lhen lhere are no roads, no
lraclors. India cannol increase produclion
nearlv as rapidlv as olher people can.
So lhere vill be greal booms some dav,
and il vill cerlainlv help lhe US hrsl or
among lhe hrsl.
There comes a lime vhen vou don'l
have lo subsidize farmers anvmore, if
in commodilies is nol going lo go
on forever, bul vou do have people
moving lo lhe areas vhere lhe monev
is. Thal doesn'l solve lhe problem
ve're lalking aboul. The greal masses
of Indians or lhe Chinese are nol going
lo move oul lo lhe counlrvside, bul
lhere vill be some of lhal.
Whalever people do or vhalever
happens in lhe vorld does have an
effecl on our environmenl, bul lhere is
nolhing ve can do aboul il. If vou slarl
a village, vou're going lo drink valer
lhere, vou're going lo have hres lhere,
vou're going lo go lo lhe loilel lhere.
You're going lo have an effecl on lhe
environmenl. There's nolhing ve can
do aboul lhal.
I am nol in lhe camp of lhose
pessimislic aboul climale change.
The climale has been changing for a
fev lhousand vears. Thev are alvavs
documenling il: look al lhese lree rings:
look al lhese glacier formalions.
vhalever. Il's been going on for
lhousands of vears. Mankind has
alvavs adapled.
The Sahara Deserl used lo be
farmland: nov il's lhe largesl deserl
in lhe vorld. I'm sure had lhe
environmenlalisls been around al lhe
lime, lhev vould have pul people in |ail
for causing all lhal, bul lhal vas nalure.
I am nol lhe leasl bil vorried lhal
mankind vill |nol] adapl and survive.
There vill be plenlv of periods of
upheaval, social unresl, chaos, forlunes,
bankruplcies, vars, bul I knov ve're
going lo survive.

DA: Is US agricuIture poised to
When vou venl oul inlo lhe helds,
lhere vere no crops because vho lhe
hell can compele vilh free food` In lhal
parl of Llhiopia, nobodv had become
a farmer in several vears, and lhe fev
farmers lhal vere lhere had slopped
farming, because everv Salurdav or
one Salurdav a monlh or vhalever lhe
dav vas, in came lhese big lrucks full
of food.
Iarmers couldn'l compele and venl
oul of business. No merchanls in lhe
markel sold foods excepl lhe ones lhal
vere gelling lhe free food. The resull
vas lhal all lhose agencies lhoughl
lhev vere doing vonderful lhings for
lhe vorld, bul vhal lhev vere doing
vas making lhe vhole vorld vorse
because lhev deslroved lhe farming
class in lhal parl of Llhiopia.
Lvervbodv vas vorried aboul lhe
famine in Llhiopia÷poor slarving
Llhiopians÷bul il made il vorse
because nov lhose people don'l knov
hov lo farm. Young people don'l knov
hov lo farm: voung people lhink food
comes on a lruck everv Salurdav.
I'm afraid manv agencies don'l make
lhings beller: lhev make lhings vorse.
DA: This brings up the point of how
food issues affect migration and
how cIimate change figures into
food security. How do you see those
issues as an investor and anaIyst?
JR: If I'm righl, vou are going lo have
more and more people move lo lhe
agricullural and mining areas.
Throughoul hislorv, vou have never
seen people sav, ¨See all lhose deblors
over lhere. I vanl lo go over lhere
vhere all lhe deblors are.¨ Throughoul
hislorv, people have said, ¨See all
lhose guvs vilh monev, see all lhose
assels, lel's go lhere.¨ Il's been going
on for several lhousand vears, nolhing
unusual aboul il, nolhing dramalic.
Thal's vhal's going lo happen. You
knov, (lhe US slale of) Texas in lhe
'7Os had huge inßuxes of populalion
because lhev had oil. Nov lhese lhings
don'l go on forever. The bull markel
"lI´s beIIer Io hate exµenslte food Ihan no food.
because Ihe onIµ uaµ µou are golng Io geI Ilnexµenslte]
food ls Io hate exµenslte food flrsI. There´s an oId
saµlng ln anµ narkeI· Ihe soIuIlon for hlgh µrlces ls
hlgh µrlces"
1960
1970
1980
1990
2000
2010
1964: Lands summer job with Wall
Street firm Dominick & Dominick, his
first exposure to trading
1965: Returns to Dominick &
Dominick for the summer
1970: Rogers and George Soros
leave firm Arnhold and S. Bleichroeder
to start the Quantum fund
1970s: Over 10 years, the
Qunatum Fund gains 4,200%,
while the Standard & Poor Index
gains 47%
Early 1980s: Makes several
international motorcycle trips,
including crossing China and
driving through Central America
1983: Agrees to teach at Columbia
University for free in exchange for
lifetime access to athletic facilities
1990-1992: Circles the globe by
motorcycle, covering more than
160,000 km and setting a Guinness
world record
1998: Establishes the Rogers
International Commodities Index
(RICI). As of February, the fund is up
more than 200% since inception
2003: Adventure Capitalist, Rogers’ book on
the round-the-world trip, is published
2000: One year into the trip, Rogers
and his traveling companion Paige
Parker are wed in England
2004: Rogers’ book on investment
advice, Hot Commodities is published
2007: Moves to Singapore. His New York
house, bought in 1977 for $107,000,
sells for $16 million
2009: Fifth book, A Gift to My Children,
A Father’s Lessons For Life And
Investing, is published
1964: Graduates from
Yale University with
Bachelor’s degree
1964-1966: Earns second
Bachelor’s degree from
Oxford College
Late 1960s: After a stint in
the army, works for
several Wall Street firms
Early 1970s: Invests in the nearly
bankrupt Lockheed, an example
of his strategy of waiting for
opportunities others haven’t noticed
1980: Rogers retires at the
age of 37, holding $14 million
of Quantum’s profits
1980s: Invests in several long-
stagnant economies such as
Portugal, Austria, and Germany,
foreseeing explosive growth where
others expected no change. He also
anticipates the drop in some
strong economies
1994: Investment Biker, Rogers’
best-selling book on his trip
around the world, is published
1999-2002: Second record-setting
trip around the world – 1,001 days,
116 countries, and 245,000 km by car
2003: Daughter “Happy” (Hilton
Augusta) is born. A nanny is hired
on the condition that she speaks
only Mandarin to Happy
2007: Rogers’ fourth book,
“A Bull in China”, is published
2008: Daughter “Baby Bee”
(Beeland Anderson) is born.
2009: The Crystal Ball: Jim Rogers
and His Investment Prediction is
published in Chinese only
24 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O vvv.developmenl.asia
lhe prices go high enough. In mv viev,
lhev vill.
Òne of lhe besl lhings lhal America
has going for il is lhis agricullural
capacilv and capabililv. America
doesn'l have manv TVs or cars lhev
can sell lo lhe vorld, bul lhev do have
lhe polenlial lo sell manv agricullural
producls lo lhe vorld, and lhal's going
lo help in America over lhe nexl couple
of decades. America is vell silualed.
Il's oulrageous lhal 3OO million
Americans have been spending billions
and billions of dollars lo subsidize
agricullure for decades. If I'm righl
aboul vhal is going lo happen in lhe
vorld, Americans are going lo slarl
gelling some relurn, nol as much as
ve've spenl, bul al leasl some benehl.
Auslralia is reasonablv vell placed:
Canada is vell placed, bul bolh of
lhose counlries have onlv so much
polenlial for vealher reasons. America
is probablv beller placed lhan anvbodv
if lhe vorld develops as I sav il's going
lo develop. Lspeciallv if lhe currencv
|US dollar] conlinues lo collapse,
il is going lo make America more
compelilive lo compele vilh farmers
around lhe vorld.
If vou don'l gel lhe prices up, lhe
silualion is going lo gel vorse. If lhe
Ihilippines suddenlv slarls slockpiling
huge amounls of rice, for example, il's
going lo drive lhe price up and olher
people vill do lhe same lhing. ßul I
vould ralher il happen nov ralher
lhan 5 vears from nov, vhen lhe
invenlories are even lover vorldvide,
vhen lhere are fever farmers, vhen
lhe infraslruclure is delerioraled more
and more.
You can pul off lhings all vou vanl,
bul lhe more vou pul lhings off lhe
vorse lhev are vhen vou hnallv
have lo address lhem. If vour roof is
leaking, sure vou can delav il, bul vou
are going lo pav lhe price a fev vears
dovn lhe road. Il vould be much
easier lo hx lhal roof nov ralher lhan 5
vears from nov vhen lhe vhole lhing
caves in because il's rolled. ■
F000 $£008|TY: Th£ 8|6 V0|0£
Prec|ous Mett|e
Commodities expert and world-renowned investor James
Beeland Rogers Jr. was raised in the small town of
Demopolis in Alabama, worlds away from Wall Street. He
attributes his investment success to hard work, savvy, and
striving to understand the dynamic world-not trying to beat
stockbrokers at their own game.
$o0rces: j|morgers.com; Adveot0re 0ap|ta||st by J|m 8ogers; |ovestmeot 8|ker by J|m 8ogers; A 6|It to Ny 0h||dreo by J|m 8ogers;
mys|ochew.com art|c|e, we waot 00r k|ds To Learo 0h|oese, dated 19 J0|y 2008; t0rt|etrader.com; b|oomberg.com; rogersrawmater|a|s.com
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26 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O
Deve|opment organizations might be the on|y way for poor farmers in Asia to access
the seeds being deve|oped by private companies
ßY Iohn ßerlhelsen
F000 $£008|TY
vvv.developmenl.asia
Since lhe conlroversial decision,
lhousands of palenls have been
granled for genelicallv modihed
organisms. The World Heallh
Òrganizalion dehnes lhese crealions as
organisms vilh genelic malerial lhal
has been allered in a vav lhal does nol
occur nalurallv.
In 1982 in Missouri, scienlisls from
Monsanlo Co., vhich had been largelv
a peslicide companv up lo lhal lime,
became lhe hrsl lo modifv a planl cell.
The discoverv marked a nev era for
food lechnologv. Todav, lhe companv
holds more lhan 7OO palenls for food-
relaled producls and is a leader in
bioscience.
Òlher agribusiness gianls folloved
Monsanlo. Their seed varielies share
al leasl one conlroversial fealure: lhev
obligale farmers, afler cenluries of
reusing seeds, lo buv nev seeds everv
vear. The corporalions sav palenling
seeds, requiring lhev nol be reused and
suing farmers vho violale lhis policv, is
vilal lo lhe heallh of agricullure.
¨Monsanlo palenls manv of lhe
seed varielies ve develop,¨ lhe
companv savs in a slalemenl. ¨Ialenls
are necessarv lo ensure lhal ve are
I
n lhe 197Os, a microbiologisl
vorking for General Lleclric
Co. named Ananda Mohan
Chakrabarlv developed a
baclerium lhal could lreal oil spills, laler
coined lhe ¨oil-ealing bacleria¨ and used
lo clean up lhe Lxxon Valdez disasler.
Chakrabarlv vas iniliallv denied a palenl
because lhe lav slaled lhal living lhings
vere nol palenlable. The case, Dicmcn! t.
Cnckrc|criu, made il lo lhe Uniled Slales
Supreme Courl in 198O. The |uslices
sel off a revolulion in bioscience bv
ruling lhal a ¨live, human-made micro-
organism is palenlable.¨
Sccds nI Cnntrnvcrsv
supporl for lradilional farming÷nol
global agribusiness÷is lhe kev lo
reducing malnulrilion and hunger.
¨Some agricullural corporalions
vanl global monopolies on human
food,¨ noles Greenpeace consullanl
Chrisloph Then, vho conlribuled lo
a reporl on lhe lopic lasl vear. ¨In lhis
vav |usl corporalions nov conlrol
lvo-lhirds of lhe global seed markel.
These palenls are lhefl of vhal farmers
achieve in breeding. We need clear
legal regulalions prohibiling palenls on
seed and farm animals.¨
Agribusiness companies and lheir
allies nole lhal il vill be impossible
lo feed vhal are likelv lo be billions
of people bv 2O5O vilhoul genelicallv
modihed crops. Irivale induslrv
involvemenl, lhev sav, is crucial. While
lhree oul of four of lhe vorld's poor
live in rural areas, according lo lhe
Wcr|! Dctc|cpmcni Rcpcri 2008, onlv 4/
of direcl aid goes lo agricullure in poor
counlries.
This puls large agribusiness, reviled
as il is bv some, al lhe forefronl of
increasing lhe vorld food supplv.
Inveslmenl is being made in so-called
climale-readv crops, vhich can resisl lhe
effecls of global varming and lolerale
ßooding, salinilv, and infeslalion.
¨I do lhink il is imporlanl lo clarifv
a bil,¨ said Roberl Zeigler, direclor
general of lhe Inlernalional Rice Research
Inslilule (IRRI) in lhe Ihilippines. ¨Iirsl,
nobodv forces a farmer lo buv seed.
When lhe farmers buv, lhev sign an
agreemenl lhal lhev vill nol reproduce il
for lhe nexl generalion. Nobodv is saving
lhev have lo buv from Monsanlo. I am
nol lrving lo defend Monsanlo, bul ve
should nole lhal.¨
¨In lerms of hvbrids,¨ Zeigler savs.
¨Il is imporlanl lo be avare lhal
farmers replacing lheir seeds everv
vear can be a good lhing, if il is high
qualilv, disease-free, free of veeds.
Iarmers are assured of a markel for
lheir harvesl because lhese grains have
lhe qualilv lhal lhe markel demands.
Il makes good economic sense.
ßeing forced lo buv everv vear is nol
necessarilv a bad lhing.¨
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 27
paid for our producls and for all lhe
inveslmenls ve pul inlo developing
lhese producls. This is one of lhe basic
reasons for palenls.¨
¨A more imporlanl reason is lo
help fosler innovalion,¨ lhe companv
conlinues. ¨Wilhoul lhe proleclion of
palenls lhere vould be lillle incenlive
for privalelv ovned companies lo
pursue and reinvesl in innovalion.
Monsanlo invesls more lhan $2.6 million
per dav in research and developmenl
lhal ullimalelv benehls farmers and
consumers. Wilhoul lhe proleclion of
palenls, lhis vould nol be possible.¨
Worldvide, planls are covered bv
a series of lavs and regulalions lhal
allov companies lo enforce palenls
vilh lavsuils and rigorous inspeclions
of farmers' helds.
GLOBAL FOOD MONOPOLIES
The moralilv of enforcing palenl lav is
complex vhen sel againsl lhe backdrop
of soaring populalions and dvindling
food slocks lhal could slarve hundreds
of millions of people. Aboul 79O million
people in lhe developing vorld are
chronicallv undernourished. Almosl
lvo-lhirds of lhem live in Asia and lhe
Iacihc, according lhe World Resources
Inslilule. Aclivisl groups sav lhal
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SOWING THE SEEDS OF TRADITION
The PhiIippine rice terraces, carved out
from the mountain by the Igorot tribe
some 5,000 years ago, were decIared a
geneticaIIy modiñed organism (GMO)
free zone by Greenpeace voIunteers
in 2009.
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vvv.developmenl.asia
from peslicides. The Governmenl of
lhe Ieople's Republic of China (IRC)
is nov conducling held lrials. The rice
could be groving on farms nexl vear.
¨ßecause of lhe sequencing of
lhe rice genome and because of lhe
viabililv of commerciallv hvbrid rice as
demonslraled in lhe IRC, lhe privale
seclor sees an opporlunilv lo lap inlo
lhe vorld's largesl grain crop for
human consumplion,¨ Zeigler explains.
¨Il is a huge markel lhal before vas nol
allraclive.¨
Irivale companies vill never
direcllv serve poor farmers, IRRI savs.
Hovever, some companies are villing
lo donale palenled varielies in cerlain
circumslances. This praclice should
be encouraged vhen il is muluallv
benehcial, IRRI savs.
DEVELOPING PARTNERSHIPS
The besl model for lhe developmenl
of rice varielies, according lo Zeigler,
has been lhe Hvbrid Rice Developmenl
Consorlium, an associalion of 2O
privale companies and anolher 2O
nalional inslilulions vorking on
producl developmenl, evalualion and
lesling, and prohl dislribulion.
¨We are slill earlv in lhe learning
phase of lhis kind of parlnership,¨
Zeigler savs. ¨Seed is |usl one
area vhere lhere is lhe polenlial
for parlnerships. Òlhers include
crealing beller ferlilizer and valer
managemenl.¨
Òne lov-lech innovalion, vhich
Zeigler calls ¨almosl mind-numbinglv
simple,¨ consisls of shorl plaslic lubes
developed bv vilh Sviss agribusiness
gianl Svngenla.
¨Rice is lvpicallv grovn under
slanding valer,¨ Zeigler savs. ¨Il doesn'l
need il for lhe vhole life cvcle. Waler's
mosl imporlanl funclion is lo conlrol
veeds. So ve developed lhese ICV
lubes vilh Svngenla. The surface mav
be drv bul lhe farmer can monilor his
valer use bv looking inlo lhe lube. If il's
drv, he can add more valer. If il's vel, he
knovs nol lo add valer. Il can cul valer
LINKING POOR FARMERS TO
EXPENSIVE RESEARCH
So hov, if governmenls can'l or von'l
fund research for agricullure, is a
public÷privale parlnership possible`
Òver lhe lasl 2O vears, lhe World ßank
has hnanced more lhan $2.5 billion for
agricullural research in developing
counlries. The bank claims a 175/ lo
almosl 9OO/ relurn on inveslmenl.
In parlicular, lhe World ßank has
supporled lhe Consullalive Group on
Inlernalional Agricullural Research,
an alliance of 24 developing and 22
induslrialized counlries, four privale
foundalions, and 13 regional and
inlernalional organizalions. The
organizalion, knovn bv ils inilials
CGIAR, provides funding, lechnical
supporl, and slralegic direclion for
agricullural research. Il also |oins
logelher 15 inlernalional research cenlers
lhal vork lo connecl privale companv
research lo lhose vho need il mosl.
Comprising more lhan 2,OOO scienlisls,
lhe alliance allovs for efhcienl access
lo experlise and enables lhe cenlers lo
lackle complex problems and negoliale
aulhorilalivelv vilh governmenls
and aclivisl groups. CGIAR cenlers
invesl more lhan $5OO million vearlv
in developmenl research in some 1OO
counlries. This allovs lhe group lo lake
colleclive aclion no single cenler could
malch, according lo proponenls.
CGIAR cenlers include evervlhing
from lhe Inlernalional Iolalo Cenler
and lhe World Iish Cenler lo Nobel
laureale agronomisl Norman ßorlaug's
Inlernalional Maize and Wheal
Improvemenl Cenler.
Also among lhe prominenl cenlers
is IRRI, vhich is headquarlered in
lhe Ihilippines and operales in 14
counlries. Il slarled in lhe 196Os vilh
ils IR8 shorl-slem rice varielv and
has since been crediled vilh dramalic
increases in rice produclion.
IRRI has plaved a role in bringing
proprielarv research inlo lhe public
sphere, acling as a sorl of ¨inlerface,¨
as one slaffer noles.
"Nnbndv Inrccs a
Iarmcr tn buv sccd"
-Robert Ze|g|er, d|rector genera|
of the Internat|ona| R|ce Research
Inst|tute |n the Ph|||pp|nes
¨We are in lhe business of research,
and ve have developed relalionships
vilh lhe privale seclor,¨ savs IRRI's
Zeigler. ßecause rice is almosl
exclusivelv locallv grovn bv farmers
vho hisloricallv save lheir seeds each
vear, he savs, mullinalionals have lillle
incenlive lo become involved. IRRI
and olher publiclv funded research
inslilules have laken on lhe mandale lo
deliver advances in produclion.
Nov, hovever, more scienlisls in more
places are lrving lo address lhe problem.
Among lhe mosl eager lo embrace
genelicallv modihed crops, Chinese
scienlisls have crealed a hvbrid rice lhal
is calching researchers' allenlion.
The rice varielies, called Huahui 1
and ßl Shanvou 63, resisl lhe rice slem
borer, an insecl lhal burrovs inside lhe
slalk, ruining lhe planl vhile hiding
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 29
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have developed ve have given
avav, and some parlners have
acluallv lurned around and
given licenses lo privale
companies for lhem. I
don'l vanl lo poinl
hngers, bul il has
made us realize
lhal unless ve
are proaclive in
lhe process, ve
could be laken
lo lhe cleaners.
If a companv is
going lo use our
lechnologv and
exlracl value, il
is legilimale for us
lo parlicipale in il.
If someone is going
lo be making a prohl
off our lechnologv, lhev
should be villing lo pav il
back.¨
WHO OWNS NATURE?
Aclivisl groups and manv farmers'
organizalions are less oplimislic aboul
lhe possibililies of linking privale
induslrv research lo lhe needs of lhe
poor. Thev see il÷as lhe Canadian
environmenlal organizalion LTC
Group puls il÷as a ¨corporale grab
lhal exlends lo all of nalure.¨
In a 2OO8 reporl, lilled Wnc Ouns
Nciurc, lhe group slaled lhal lhe
handful of companies lhal conlrol
mosl of lhe vorld's seed sales vill
nol help impoverished farmers unless
direcl pressure is applied. ¨There is
vasl and groving resislance lo lhe
dislocalion and devaslalion caused bv
lhe agro-induslrial food svslem,¨ savs
Silvia Ribeiro of LTC Group. ¨In lhe
global slruggle for food sovereignlv,
lhe plaving held isn'l level bul lhe
scope of resislance is massive÷
peasanl farmers, hsher people,
pasloralisls, and allied civil socielv
and social movemenls are hghling
for locallv conlrolled and sociallv |usl
food and heallh svslems.¨ ■

vears ago is nol done lodav. We have
lo change, bul hov do ve knov vhal
farmers vanl` We learn lhrough lhe
seed companies.¨
The inslilule vorks lo prevenl
lhe fruils of lheir vork from being
palenled bv privale companies vilh
a series of guidelines for dealing vilh
privale induslrv in crop improvemenl
research.
Iroleclion of research is imporlanl,
savs Zeigler. ¨Òne lhing lhal has
concerned us is lhal some hvbrids ve
use enormouslv.¨ Svngenla is
giving oul lhe lubes for free in
ßangladesh, Zeigler savs.
In Andhra Iradesh,
India, lhe Inlernalional
Crops Research
Inslilule for lhe
Semi-Arid Tropics,
anolher CGIAR
cenler, has been
doing similar
vork. The
organizalion
vorks on
increasing vields
in sorghum,
groundnuls,
pearl millel, and
chickpeas, vhich
drvland farmers
grov. These slruggling
farmers vork on
marginal lands across Soulh
Asia and Africa, oflen plagued
bv poor soil ferlililv and erralic
rainfall.
The inslilule, knovn bv lhe acronvm
ICRISAT, has parlnered vilh 5O
companies in ßrazil, Lgvpl, India,
Indonesia, and Mexico lo deliver
improved hvbrid seeds lo poor
farmers. Ils privale induslrv parlners
benehl bv accessing breeding malerial
from lhe farmers. This approach
develops improved seeds lhal are
available lo poor farmers and improves
agricullural research capabililies.
¨We bolh benehl,¨ savs Mangala Rai,
direclor general and |oinl chairperson
of ICRISAT and ils companion
organizalion, lhe Indian Council of
Research. ¨The privale companies gel
lhe advanlage of scienlihc research and
solulions lo lechnical problems lhev
mav face. Il has been advanlageous
for us because ve don'l develop lhe
hnal producl, and il is advanlageous lo
lhem because lhev don'l produce lhe
inlermediale producl. We do one parl:
lhev do lhe olher.¨
The developing vorld is changing
fasl, Rai savs. ¨Whal vas done 1O
GENETICALLY ALTERED
NewIy germinated rice is separated from
the geIatinous tissue that secures the
pIant to the dish. Soybean DNA, rich
in iron, is introduced into the pIant.
This process makes the geneticaIIy
aItered rice abIe to store more iron, thus
becoming more nutritious. This gene-
spIicing technique is adaptabIe to any
strain of rice.
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AsIa's OrganIc Sµrnuts
F000 $£008|TY
vvv.developmenl.asia
including proleclionism, cumbersome
regulalions, complex cerlihcalion
requiremenls, and governmenl
emphasis on olher priorilies, experls
sav. As a resull, Asia's organic
agricullure is slill slruggling lo
oulgrov ils ¨niche markel¨ image.
Driven bv faclors as diverse as
Weslern lourisls' quesl for safe food in
Thailand, Chinese vomen's desire for
W
hile markel grovlh
for organic producls
in Norlh America and
Lurope has sloved
because of lhe recession, Asia is
emerging as a polenlial brighl spol on
bolh lhe supplv and demand sides of
organic agricullure.
ßul lhis enormous polenlial is
hindered bv various obslacles,
Asia has huge potentia| for deve|oping organic agricu|ture, but protectionism, conf|icting industry
standards, and cumbersome regu|ations cou|d stand in the way
ßY William ßranigin
CERTIFIED ORGANIC A grocery cIerk
stocks sheIves in the organic produce
section at the WhoIe Foods Market in
the United States. Differing standards
for organic food make internationaI
certiñcation probIematic.
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 31
ferlilizers, genelic modihcalion,
and high energv use, savs Markus
Arbenz, lhe execulive direclor of
IIÒAM. Among lhem, he savs, are
lhe mullinalional companies lhal hold
palenls on seeds and peslicides.
¨Òrganic is a verv small segmenl
of agricullure around lhe vorld,¨
DiMalleo savs. ¨There is no place in
lhe vorld vhere all farming is done
organicallv.¨
Lending inslilulions, lherefore,
¨have been geared lovard non-organic
agricullure,¨ she savs. ¨Thev are
beginning lo see lhe advanlages of
organic.bul evervone slill sees organic
as a niche. Il's small compared lo lhe
levels of supporl lhal non-organic
agricullure gels.¨ She adds, ¨There
are nol lhal manv banks lhal have a
mission lo be on lhe culling edge of
change.¨
ORGANIC GROWTH
Around lhe globe, al leasl 35 million
heclares of land are managed
organicallv bv more lhan 1.4
million producers, according lo lhe
lalesl annual survev bv IIÒAM
and lhe Research Inslilule of
Òrganic Agricullure, a Sviss-based
organizalion knovn bv ils German
inilials as IißL. In addilion, lhere are
43O,OOO heclares of cerlihed organic
aquacullure. The survev, published
in mid-Iebruarv, is based largelv on
dala from 2OO8. In 2OO7, lhere vere 32
million heclares of organic land and
1.2 million producers, according lo lasl
vear's reporl.
Lurope, Lalin America, and Òceania
ranked as lhe regions vilh lhe
largesl areas of organicallv managed
agricullural land, vilh Auslralia
lopping lhe lisl, lhanks lo ils vasl
organic grasslands for grazing. The
Ieople's Republic of China (IRC)
and India ranked lhird and sevenlh
respeclivelv among counlries vilh lhe
largesl areas of agricullural land under
organic managemenl.
In Asia, lhe lolal organic area
amounls lo nearlv 3.3 million
heallhv skin-care producls in Shanghai,
and a campaign bv Indonesian sludenl
aclivisls lo declare ßali an ¨organic
island,¨ organic agricullure in Asia has
grovn signihcanllv in recenl vears.
Iroponenls poinl lo organic
farming's benehls in reducing poverlv,
hghling climale change, improving
lhe heallh of farm vorkers, and
olher social and environmenlal
consideralions.
According lo lhe Inlernalional
Iederalion of Òrganic Agricullure
(IIÒAM), lhe German-based umbrella
organizalion of lhe global organic
movemenl, inveslmenls in agricullure
are four limes more efhcienl in hghling
poverlv and hunger lhan in anv olher
seclor, and inveslmenls in organic
agricullure are hve lo eighl limes more
efhcienl.
¨Asia has a good opporlunilv lo go
organic,¨ IIÒAM Iresidenl Kalherine
DiMalleo savs in an inlerviev. ¨A
number of governmenl and privale
seclor organizalions in Asia are
supporling conversion lo organic
praclices. I lhink lhal lhere's dehnilelv
a verv slrong fulure for Asia in bolh
produclion and on lhe relail side.¨
Òrganic farming can increase
harvesls lhrough praclices lhal
promole biological processes and local
resources over expensive loxic agro-
chemicals, IIÒAM savs. These praclices
can bring back inlo produclion
land lhal has been degraded bv
unsuslainable farming praclices, severe
droughl, and soil erosion. And lhev are
readilv adoplable bv lhe vorld's 4OO
million small and relalivelv poor farms,
vhich are lhe kev lo local food securilv
in lhe developing vorld.
IIÒAM vould like lo see inslilulions
such as mullilaleral lenders incorporale
organic farming in lheir agricullural
developmenl policies lo a grealer
exlenl vhen il comes lo credils.
¨Òne challenge is lhal a lol of
people are slill pushing for a green
revolulion, an old vav of doing lhings¨
lhal depends on peslicides, chemical
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FOOD SAFETY A food market in Nanjing,
Jiangsu province in the PeopIeҋs
RepubIic of China (PRC) seIIs organic
produce such as cabbage. Contributing
to the growth of domestic organic
markets in Asia has been a series of food
scares, notabIy the discoveries in 2007
and 2008 of pet food, animaI feed, infant
formuIa, miIk, and eggs that had been
contaminated with meIamine from the
PRC.
32 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O
F000 $£008|TY
vvv.developmenl.asia
heclares, or 9/ of lhe vorld's organic
agricullural land, lhe IißL and IIÒAM
sludv savs. The IRC accounls for
nearlv 1.9 million heclares, and India
1 million. In addilion, organic vild
colleclion areas plav a ma|or role in
bolh counlries. Tinv Timor-Lesle has
lhe highesl share (7/) of organic land
compared vilh ils lolal farmland.
Allhough fresh produce and held
crops vilh lov value-added processing
accounled for mosl of lhe organic
oulpul, produclion of hnal processed
producls vas reporled lo be groving,
as vas aquacullure (primarilv shrimp
and hsh) in counlries such as lhe
IRC, Indonesia, Malavsia, Mvanmar,
Thailand, and Viel Nam.
Imporls have helped drive grovlh in
lhe organic seclor, vilh local markels
laking off in a number of Asian cilies.
ßangalore, ßangkok, ßei|ing, Delhi,
Iakarla, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, and
Shanghai are nov knovn as organic
hol spols vhere domeslic consumplion
of organic producls is increasing,
especiallv among nevlv afßuenl
consumers and Dctc|cpmcni Asic
readers.
In 2OO8, nev producl launches of
organic food and beverage in Asia
|umped 175/ from lhe previous vear,
compared vilh 9O/ in Norlh America,
an induslrv survev shoved.
¨A lol of lhe produclion under
cerlihed organic labels is sold lo lhe
Uniled Slales and Lurope, especiallv
in crops lhal are nol as easilv grovn in
our geographic localions,¨ IIÒAM's
DiMalleo savs. In addilion, ¨lhere
is a slrong movemenl in each of lhe
HOLISTIC FARMING A farm worker
harvests cauIihower at an organic
farm at Kathwada viIIage, some 30
kiIometers from Ahmedabad in India.
Proponents point to organic farmingҋs
beneñts in reducing poverty, ñghting
cIimate change, improving the heaIth
of farm workers, and other sociaI and
environmentaI considerations.
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¨Whenever lhere's a food scare,¨
she DiMalleo savs, ¨il does impacl
organic, bul usuallv in a posilive vav
because ve have usuallv addressed
mosl of lhose issues¨ relaled lo lhe
problem, including lraceabililv and lhe
lvpes of ingredienls, preservalives, and
chemical addilives emploved.
¨In Asia, lhere's a big concern for
food securilv,¨ savs Arbenz. He noles
lhal lourisls oflen gravilale lovard
organic food in Asian counlries,
believing il lo be safer.
TOUTING ORGANIC'S BENEFITS
Ior Asian farmers, ¨organic agricullure
conlribules lo poverlv allevialion,¨
Arbenz savs, vilh producers usuallv
gelling higher prices for cerlihed
organic commodilies ranging from
a fev percenl lo lvo or lhree limes
as much. Generallv, he savs, IIÒAM
advises lhal a vise slralegv is nol lo
exceed a 3O/ price premium.
In lhe Ihilippines, lhe nongovern-
menl organizalion MASIIAG has
shovn lhal afler 2 or 3 vears of organic
developmenl, farmers have access lo
beller food, more diverse crops, and
higher incomes lhan lhev vould if lhev
had sluck lo convenlional farming,
Arbenz savs.
In a 2OO8 reporl, lhe Uniled Nalions
Conference on Trade and Developmenl
(UNCTAD) and lhe UN Lnvironmenl
Irogramme (UNLI) slales lhal adoplion
of organic farming praclices can help
prevenl lhe eslimaled 3 million cases of
acule peslicide poisoning and 3OO,OOO
dealhs lhal resull each vear from lhe use
of chemicals in convenlional agricullure.
¨Due lo expanding markels and
price premiums, recenl sludies in
Africa, Asia, and Lalin America
indicale lhal organic farmers generallv
earn higher incomes lhan lheir
convenlional counlerparls,¨ lhe reporl
savs. ¨Modern organic lechniques
have lhe polenlial lo mainlain and
even increase vields over lhe long
lerm vhile improving soil ferlililv,
biodiversilv, and olher ecosvslem
services lhal underpin agricullure.¨
The climale also benehls, lhe reporl
slales, vilh sludies shoving lhal organic
farming uses 2O/÷56/ less energv lhan
convenlional agricullure and sequeslers
3÷8 more lons of carbon per heclare.
¨And lhese davs ve can'l afford
climale-damaging slralegies anv
more,¨ Arbenz savs.
Yel, despile lhe organic seclor's
slrides in Asia, lhe share of lolal
agricullural land devoled lo organic
farming amounls lo onlv O.2/ in lhe
region, compared vilh O.6/ in Norlh
America and 1.7/ in Lurope, lhe lalesl
IißL]IIÒAM survev shovs. And
lhe seclor conlinues lo face a hosl of
challenges, manv of lhem of ils ovn
making.
CONFRONTING THE OBSTACLES
¨The organic movemenl mav be ils
ovn vorsl enemv,¨ vriles Òng Kung
Wai, an experl on organic agricullure
from Malavsia, in lasl vear's survev,
1nc Wcr|! cj Orgcnic Agricu|iurc 2009.
Despile broad agreemenl lhal lrade
in organic producls should receive
preferenlial lrealmenl, he noles lhal
lhree of lhe 12 privale organic seclor
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 33
counlries lo also develop domeslic
markels for lheir producls.¨ In lhe
IRC, for example, she noles ¨a large
increase¨ in lhe amounl of land in
organic produclion.
¨The US and Luropean markels are
becoming somevhal slagnanl righl
nov¨ vhile demand in ma|or Asian
cilies is groving, DiMalleo savs. ¨We're
seeing a shifl in lhe largesl grovlh
polenlial in produclion and markels..
Dehnilelv lhe domeslic markels in Asia
are vhere lhe grovlh is, even for US
and Luropean producers.¨
Ior lhe lime being, hovever, even
lhough lrade vilhin lhe region is
groving, il is slill dvarfed bv exporls
lo Norlh America and Lurope.
Thal is vhere lhe bulk of consumer
demand for organic producls has been
concenlraled, accounling for as much
as 97/ of global revenue, according
lo Òrganic Monilor, a London-based
research and consulling companv.
Through mosl of lhe lasl decade,
global demand for organic producls
grev sleadilv, vilh sales rising bv
more lhan $5 billion a vear. In 2OO8,
vorldvide sales reached $5O.9 billion,
doubling in value from 2OO3, Òrganic
Monilor reporls. The companv expecls
grovlh lo conlinue in lhe seclor,
allhough al lover rales lhan previous
vears because of lhe inlernalional
hnancial crisis. Il pro|ecls lhal 2OO9
could be lhe hrsl vear of single-
digil markel grovlh. In lhe Uniled
Kingdom, for example, a reduclion
in consumer spending and a drop in
induslrv inveslmenl resulled in |usl 2/
grovlh in lhe organic seclor in 2OO8.
Conlribuling lo lhe grovlh of
domeslic organic markels in Asia has
been a series of food scares, nolablv
lhe discoveries in 2OO7 and 2OO8 of pel
food, animal feed, infanl formula, milk,
and eggs lhal had been conlaminaled
vilh melamine from lhe IRC.
In lodav's global economv, food
scares anvvhere in lhe vorld lend lo
raise lhe queslion in consumers' minds:
¨Is lhe food I'm ealing safe enough`¨
"Due Io exµandlng
narkeIs and µrlce
µrenluns. recenI
sIudles ln Afrlca. Asla.
and LaIln Anerlca
lndlcaIe IhaI organlc
farners generaIIµ earn
hlgher lncones Ihan
Ihelr contenIlonaI
counIerµarIs"
-2008 report by the Un|ted
Nat|ons (UNj Conference on Trade
and Deve|opment and the UN
Env|ronment Programme
slandards, mosl of lhem geared lo lhe
imporl requiremenls of lhe Uniled
Slales and Lurope.
While Asian oulpul has improved,
lhe range of local producls remains
limiled, producl developmenl cosls are
slill a ma|or conslrainl, and conversion
lo organic operalions has oflen proved
loo demanding for privale producers.
Moreover, efforls in some Asian
counlries lo prolecl lheir ovn organic
markels appear lo be having lhe
uninlended consequence of limiling
lheir developmenl.
In refusing lo accepl equivalence
recognilion, associalions in Iapan, lhe
Republic of Korea, and Taipei,China
¨didn'l vanl lo give up lhal
proleclionism,¨ DiMalleo savs. ¨Their
allilude vas lhal lheir ovn lavs
vould help develop lheir domeslic
produclion.Dehnilelv proleclionism
vas a verv large piece of il.¨
ßul lhal sland ¨diminishes lrade,
regional or olhervise,¨ she savs.
¨You have lo gel lhe domeslic markel
buill up lo meel lhe demand, and lhe
demand vill nol expand if vou have a
limiled number of producls.¨
So far, lhe US and Canada are lhe
onlv counlries lhal have negolialed an
34 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O
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equivalence agreemenl. ¨The nexl hurdle
is inlernalional equivalencv,¨ DiMalleo
savs. ¨Il's cerlainlv much harder.
There is nol vel a regional agreemenl
among anv of lhe counlries in Asia, and
I don'l see changes in lhe allilude in lhe
Republic of Korea or Iapan.¨
Roberl ß. Anderson, presidenl and
founder of lhe Iennsvlvania-based
hrm, Suslainable Slralegies÷Advisers
in Iood and Agricullure, concurs. ¨The
consumer markel has lo be buill,¨ he
savs, and imporls plav a large parl.
Then, as lhe domeslic organic markel
develops, local producers can begin lo
converl lheir ovn oulpul lo meel lhe
demand.
GRAPPLING WITH CERTIFICATION
A relaled issue is cerlihcalion, vhich
DiMalleo calls ¨an excellenl lool,¨
bul one lhal can be quile cosllv. Il also
represenls a double-edged svord.
¨More and more governmenls
in Asia are developing organic
cerlihcalion and accredilalion
programs and slandards requiremenls,
and lhev're spending lheir lime on
lhal,¨ DiMalleo savs. ¨ßul al lhe same
lime, lhev're nol allocaling monev in
lheir budgels or crealing programs
lo lrain lheir exlension agenls lo
undersland vhal lhese slandards are
and applv lhem lo real-life silualions
and develop lhe farming svslem vilh
lhe farmers.¨
Asia had al leasl 166 cerlihcalion
bodies in 2OO9, more lhan 8O/ of lhem
in |usl four counlries: lhe IRC, India,
Iapan, and lhe Republic of Korea.
IAÒ, IIÒAM, and UNCTAD
have a pro|ecl called Global Òrganic
Markel Access, aimed al vorking
vilh governmenls lo choose one sel of
slandards and have more open access
lo mulliple counlries. Al presenl,
producers oflen have lo meel several
differenl slandards al lhe same lime,
vhich raises cosls lhal lhen gel passed
on lo consumers.
¨Thal discourages people from gelling
cerlihed lo mulliple slandards and
associalions parlicipaling in a recenl
organic conference in Saravak,
Malavsia did nol supporl equivalence
recognilion, a means of reducing
lechnical barriers lo lrade in organic
agricullural producls.
An inlernalional lask force sel up bv
IIÒAM, UNCTAD, and lhe Iood and
Agricullure Òrganizalion of lhe Uniled
Nalions (IAÒ) had vorked from
2OO3 lo 2OO8 lo produce inlernalional
guidelines for delermining equivalence
of organic slandards, lherebv removing
lrade barriers resulling from disparale
organic regulalions, privale slandards,
and cerlihcalion requiremenls.
While public seclor ofhcials al
lhe Saravak conference accepled
equivalence recognilion for imporls,
¨some organic aclivisls are proving
lo be more nalionalisls lhan social
environmenlalisls,¨ Kung Wai
vriles. He lamenls lhal privale seclor
associalions from Iapan, lhe Republic
of Korea, and Taipei,China refused
lo supporl equivalence recognilion,
disappoinling lhose vho hoped Asian
counlries vould shov mulual respecl
for lhe differenl vavs lhal organic
agricullure is pracliced in lhe region.
¨Sadlv, lhe ma|or focus of
governmenl inilialives in lhe region is
on slandards and cerlihcalion inslead
of exlension, lraining and producl
developmenl,¨ Kung Wai savs.
Allhough manv problems persisl,
Kung Wai sounds a more oplimislic
nole in lhe lalesl reporl, 1nc Wcr|! cj
Orgcnic Agricu|iurc 2010, saving lhal
lhe seclor's developmenl in Asia ¨mav
be lurning a corner.¨ He delecls grealer
cooperalion among slakeholders
¨afler vears of inlernal squabbles¨ and
poinls lo lhe expecled formalion of
¨a regional vorking group on markel
developmenl, including harmonizalion
and equivalence in organic norms.¨
A ma|or challenge, Kung Wai vriles,
is lhal lrade of organic producls vilhin
Asia÷and lhus lhe developmenl
of domeslic markels÷are being
hampered bv varving regulalions and
ClIles such as
BangaIore. Bangkok.
Bel]lng. DeIhl. ]akarIa.
KuaIa Lunµur. ManlIa.
and Shanghal. are nou
knoun as organlc hoI
sµoIs uhere donesIlc
consunµIlon of
organlc µroducIs ls
lncreaslng. esµeclaIIµ
anong neuIµ affIuenI
consuners
issues, sees anolher challenge in lhe
fundamenlallv differenl philosophies
behind cerlihcalion in lhe US and Asia.
The US cerlihes lhal food is organic
based on lhe vav il is grovn: vhereas,
manv Asian counlries applv slricl
measuremenls, vilh inhnilesimal
amounls of peslicide or genelicallv
modihed organism (GMÒ) residue
disqualifving il from cerlihcalion.
While lhe USDA seal is recognized
around lhe vorld, ¨all of Asia is
challenged bv vanling O/ residues
for GMÒs,¨ vhich is realislicallv
¨unallainable¨ for manv agricullural
producls, such as grains, lhal are
grovn in lhe US, Anderson savs. ¨The
realilv is lhal vilh lhe prevailing
veslerlv vinds, lhese verv small
residues do shov up in all foods,
organic and olhervise.¨
¨Òur argumenl is: vou mav nol delecl
residues in a hnished producl, bul lhal
does nol make il organic,¨ he savs.
In lhe Republic of Korea especiallv,
lhe zero lolerance for GMÒs has made
il verv difhcull lo imporl mulli-
ingredienl organic producls. Iapan has
zero lolerance for peslicides.
¨Òne has lo vonder hov much of
il is vell inlended and hov much is
proleclionisl,¨ Anderson savs.
Òlher mechanisms are more sublle.
In lhe IRC, for inslance, lhere are
relalivelv fev reslriclions on imporling
organic food, bul governmenl
regulalions slipulale lhal lhese
producls mav nol sav ¨organic¨ in
Mandarin on lheir labels, Anderson
savs.
¨You can sav organic in Lnglish, bul
nol in Mandarin.¨ ■
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 35
looking for differenl markels,¨ DiMalleo
savs. ¨Il's a barrier for people lo gel inlo
organic, and il's a barrier for lrade.¨
In lhe Republic of Korea, for
example, Anderson savs, cerlihers
vho are alreadv globallv recognized
slill have lo be accrediled bv lhe
governmenl in Seoul, ¨a prolracled and
expensive process.¨
Anderson, an aulhorilv on
organic farming vho advises lhe US
Deparlmenl of Agricullure (USDA)
and lhe Slale Deparlmenl on lrade
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BIG PRODUCER A farmer grows cabbage
using organic farming methods in
India. The country ranked fourth among
countries with the Iargest agricuIturaI
areas under organic management.
vvv.developmenl.asia
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COLOSSAL CHANGES
Agricullure around Asia faces colossal
ad|uslmenls lo address lhe lhreals
lo food securilv. The kev lo survival
is food dislribulion and slorage
lechniques, adapling small farms, and
nalural disasler preparalion, climale
scienlisls sav.
Asia's poor are among lhe
mosl vulnerable because of
lheir dependence on agricullure
and lheir inabililv lo adapl lo
rising lemperalures and exlreme
vealher. Aboul 6O/ of lhe region's
economicallv aclive populalion
and lheir dependenls÷2.2 billion
people÷relv on agricullure for lheir
livelihoods, according lo lhe WII's
2009 C|imcic Cncngc cn! Hungcr reporl.
In India, vhich has lhe largesl
number of poor and malnourished
children in lhe vorld, more lhan half of
F
our decades from nov, Asia
could be a hungrv region.
If pro|eclions bv climale
scienlisls are correcl, Asia vill
produce half ils currenl vheal vield
and 1O/ less rice. And vilh currenl
rales of populalion and economic
grovlh, food demand vill double.
Asia is one of lhe mosl vulnerable
regions lo Larlh's changing climale,
second onlv lo sub-Saharan Africa.
Climale scienlisls are unanimous
in predicling lhal Soulh Asia vill
be parlicularlv hard hil. Disaslers
and exlreme vealher could become
common.
¨Climale change and more
frequenl nalural disaslers lhrealen
lo signihcanllv increase hunger
and malnulrilion,¨ savs Michael
Sheinkman, senior regional program
advisor on vulnerabililv and analvsis
mapping for Asia of lhe Uniled
Nalion's World Iood Irogramme
(WII).
¨More frequenl and inlense nalural
disaslers: delerioraling environmenl
and land produclivilv: and reduced
access lo food, valer, and sanilalion are
pro|ecled lo increase lhe risk of hunger
and malnulrilion vorldvide÷mosl
affecling counlries vhere hunger,
undernulrilion, and food insecurilv are
alreadv videspread.¨
WarmIng G!nbc
Cnn!s Hnµcs
Address g|oba| warming, c|imate change scientists warn,
or Asia faces ma|nutrition, barren farms, f|oods,
and devastated agricu|ture
ßY ßronvvn Curran
ALL DRIED UP A young man wa|ks
across Upper Lake, As|a's |argest
art|ñc|a| |ake, west of Bhopa|, the cap|ta|
of the Ind|an state of Madhya Pradesh.
Bu||t by Raja Bhoj dur|ng h|s tenure as
k|ng of Ma|wa (1005-1055j, the |ake once
served around 40% of the res|dents w|th
near|y 30 m||||on ga||ons per day but now
||es comp|ete|y dr|ed up due to the |ack
of ra|n |n the past 3 years.
manager of The Climale Inslilule.
Capacilv lo adapl lo an exlra 2°C
in lhe earlh's lemperalure is crilical
lo mainlain agricullural produclion.
Hence, lhe vorsl-hil vill be lhe
region's poor farmers vho have lillle
abililv in adapling lheir farming
melhods lo accommodale higher
lemperalures and more frequenl
exlreme vealher evenls.
¨Il's nol |usl a queslion of vhere
climale change vill impacl, bul of
people's abililv lo adapl and respond,
and il's lhe poor vho vill have lhe
leasl abililv,¨ savs Walls. ¨The kind
of rapid climale change ve're slarling
lo see nov means lhal our abililv lo
gel lhings logelher is limiled. ßul
adaplalion is onlv one parl. If lhe
vorld varms more lhan lvo degrees,
lhen our abililv lo adapl is verv
limiled. So il's imperalive lhal lhe
vorld acls lo cul emissions al lheir
source.¨
Currenllv, aboul 1 billion of
lhe vorld's 6.8 billion people are
chronicallv hungrv. Climale change
lhrealens lo push anolher 2OO million
inlo hunger. As an example, Walls savs
lhe prolonged droughl in Auslralia vas
a ma|or conlribulor lo lhe 2OO7÷2OO8
food price hikes and slaple shorlages,
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vhich led lo an exlra 2OO million
hungrv people, bringing lhe global
hunger hgure lo ils currenl 1 billion.
As agricullure suffers and hunger
spreads, malnulrilion is also expecled
lo rise.
While increased agricullural
produclivilv can be seen in norlhern
areas of Asia vhere some crops sland
lo benehl from increased carbon
dioxide levels in lhe almosphere, in
Soulh Asia lhe number of hungrv is
pro|ecled lo increase severelv because
of vorsening condilions.
The number of hungrv people
vorldvide is expecled lo rise 1O/ lo
2O/ higher lhan lhe hgure expecled
vilhoul climale change, under
scenarios facloring in conlinued high
populalion grovlh and regional
income disparilies. In scenarios
anlicipaling lover populalion
grovlh and more equilable income
dislribulion, lhe addilional numbers
al risk are eslimaled lo be 5/ or less.
Decreasing vields lhrealen food
securilv for more lhan 1.6 billion
people, according lo dala from lhe
Inlernalional Iood Iolicv Research
Inslilule (IIIRI) and Inlernalional
Ianel on Climale Change's |curin
Asscssmcni Rcpcri 2007.
lhe vorkforce is engaged in agricullure
and manv more are dependenl on il.
Miligalion slralegies are clear,
and lhev are urgenl. Climale change
experls urge Asian governmenls
lo converl lo clean energv sources,
use soil carbon sequeslralion,
harvesl valer, improve grasslands
managemenl, lake anli-deserlihcalion
measures, prepare for nalural
disaslers, pursue reforeslalion, and
underlake emissions lrading schemes.
Asian nalions are implemenling
lhese programs lo varving degrees.
ßul fev nalions have enough
slralegies in place, al lhe pace
required, lo combal lhe anlicipaled
lemperalure increase bv 2O5O, savs
Corev Walls, regional pro|ecls
OUT OF GAS A man transports a gas
cy||nder on h|s b|cyc|e, gu|d|ng |t
through ñood water on the outsk|rts
of V|jayawada, some 300 k||ometers
southeast of Hyderabad. At |east 1.5
m||||on peop|e were d|sp|aced |n the
Ind|an states of Karnataka, Maharashtra,
and Andhra Pradesh after days of
torrent|a| ra|n |n October 2009.
Indonesia, Lasl Timor and Viel Nam.¨
Larlv varning svslems lo anlicipale
nalural disaslers, plus disasler response
preparedness, are kev slralegies lhal
lhe WII urges governmenls lo adopl
lo miligale climale change impacls.
The agencv is helping lhe
Governmenl of ßangladesh in
slrenglhening ils nalional earlv
varning svslems and improving ils
disasler managemenl svslem. Since
2OOO, slralegies and aclivilies on
disasler risk reduclion and climale
change adaplalion have resulled in
3O,OOO homes being raised above ßood
levels, and 1.6 million vomen lrained
in disasler readiness and adaplalion.
IIIRI and lhe Inlernalional Ianel
for Climale Change predicl lhal lhe
region's small island-slales sland
lo lose 3O/÷5O/ maize crop vield,
experience a 1O/÷35/ decline in
sugarcane vield, and a 35/÷75/
decline in laro oulpul as a resull of
exlended drv seasons or signihcanllv
increased rainfall.
¨Small island-slales alreadv have
agricullural produclion under severe
slress, making lhem parlicularlv
sensilive lo climale change from a
food securilv poinl of viev,¨ lhe
WII reporl highlighls. ¨In small
island-slales vilh lillle available land,
subsislence food produclion is vilal
for food securilv, rendering impacls
of climale change lhe main reason
for loss of livelihoods and increased
vulnerabililv in lhe region.¨
IMPACT ON PRODUCTION
Iro|eclions are lhal bv 2O5O crop
produclion vill decline in all regions
because of climale change. According
lo lhe WII, Asia vill experience up lo a
5O/ decline in vheal and a 17/ decline
in rice crop vields bv 2O5O compared
vilh 2OOO levels.
¨Irrigaled and rainfed vheal and
irrigaled rice are especiallv hard hil.
In lhe Ieople's Republic of China
(IRC), some crops fare reasonablv vell
because higher fulure lemperalures are
favorable in localions vhere currenl
lemperalures are al lhe lov end of
lhe oplimal lemperalure for lhe crop.
India and olher parls of Soulh Asia
are parlicularlv hard hil bv climale
change,¨ lhe reporl slales.
The Auslralian-based Common-
veallh Scienlihc and Research
Òrganizalion (CSIRÒ) pro|ecls irrigaled
and rainfed vheal produclion lo fall bv
more lhan half in Soulh Asia bv 2O5O.
Ior Lasl Asia and lhe Iacihc, rainfed
vheal produclion is seen lo drop bv
aboul a lhird and irrigaled vheal bv
aboul a hflh. Irrigaled rice vields are
forecasl lo fall as much as 23/ in Soulh
SETBACKS IN COMBATING
CHILD MALNUTRITION
Climale change vill have a ¨signihcanl
negalive impacl on progress
made reducing lhe proporlion of
malnourished children, increasing
lhe number bv aboul 11 million in
comparison vilh a no climale change
scenario,¨ savs lhe WII's C|imcic
Cncngc cn! Hungcr.
Climale change in Asia is predicled
lo increase lhe occurrence of exlreme
vealher evenls including ßoods,
droughls, foresl hres, and lropical
cvclones. Asia alreadv accounls for
89/ of people affecled bv disaslers
vorldvide.
¨Climale models predicl lhal an
increase in global lemperalure vill
resull in lhe grealer frequencv and
inlensilv of slorm evenls. Tropical
slorms, such as cvclones, lvphoons,
conlinue lo have large-scale effecls on
lhe food securilv of populalions living
in Asia,¨ savs Sheinkman.
¨WII clearlv sees lhe polenlial
lhreal lo food securilv posed bv high-
inlensilv lropical slorms. An increase
in lhe frequencv of such slorms vould
have an impacl on food securilv of
manv counlries in Asia including
ßangladesh, Mvanmar, lhe Ihilippines,
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 39
"CIlnaIe change and
nore frequenI naIuraI
dlsasIers IhreaIen
Io slgnlflcanIIµ
lncrease hunger and
naInuIrlIlon"
-M|chae| She|nkman, Wor|d Food
Programme's sen|or reg|ona|
program adv|sor on vu|nerab|||ty
and ana|ys|s mapp|ng for As|a
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WORST DROUGHT IN 50 YEARS
A farmer crosses a dr|ed-up reservo|r
dur|ng a severe drought |n Sh|||n county,
Kunm|ng c|ty, Yunnan prov|nce |n the
Peop|e's Repub||c of Ch|na. The worst
drought |n 50 years |s |eav|ng m||||ons
of peop|e and an|ma|s w|thout dr|nk|ng
water. The ra|nfa|| |n Yunnan s|nce
Ju|y 2009 has been just over 200 mm,
|ower than the perenn|a| average and a
record |ow. Other than |ow ra|nfa||, the
prov|nce |s a|so exper|enc|ng record h|gh
temperatures. Average temperatures
have been near|y 2 degree Ce|s|us above
norma|.
developed counlries, and lhe mosl
food-insecure regions, including
Soulh Asia, vill be hil hardesl, lhough
adaplalion of farming praclices could
halve lhis impacl.
°NO-REGRETS" APPROACH
To miligale lhe polenlial impacls of
climale change on food securilv, lhe
Iood and Agricullure Òrganizalion of
lhe Uniled Nalions (IAÒ) recommends
Asian nalions reduce greenhouse gas
emissions from agricullure lhrough
more efhcienl agropraclices such as lov
lillage, inlegraled pesl managemenl,
and using organic ferlilizer, and
lhrough lhe subslilulion of fossil fuels
vilh bioenergv.
Such approaches ¨represenl
imporlanl opporlunilies for climale
change miligalion,¨ according lo
IAÒ's |mpcci cj C|imcic Cncngc cn
Agricu|iurc in Asic cn! inc Pccihc 2004
sludv.
Miligalion aclivilies should follov
a ¨no-regrels¨ approach, savs Renó
Gommes, IAÒ's senior climale change
ofhcer in lhe Nalural Resources
Managemenl and Lnvironmenl
Deparlmenl. ¨Given lhe uncerlainlv
aboul fulure climale scenarios, no-
regrels policies provide a slralegv
againsl climale risks and emphasize
4O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O
F000 $£008|TY
vvv.developmenl.asia
measures lhal should be laken in anv
case÷even in lhe absence of climale
change÷because lhev improve lhe
efhciencv of presenl farming. Al lhe
same lime, lhev pul farmers in a beller
posilion lo adapl lo or miligale againsl
climale change, should il occur,¨
Gommes savs in an inlerviev.
¨Climale policies in Asia musl
be lailored lo risks and counlrv
circumslances. Asia's climale is as
diverse as ils landscape. The region
spans a varielv of climale zones,
including arid deserls, parched
rangelands, freezing alpine mounlains,
and humid lropical islands. The
pro|ecled impacls of climale change
vill be helerogeneous, suggesling
lhal lhere can be no one-size-hls-all
approach for building climale resilience
across Asia. Responses vill need lo be
cuslomized lo specihc risks.¨
Gommes savs adaplalion slralegies
should include: promolion of climale-
resilienl cropping pallerns and
lechniques: agricullural research and
exlension for promoling climale-
resilienl crop varielies: improvemenls
in risk managemenl (e.g., climale
insurance, conlingenl credil schemes):
and irrigalion developmenl and
increased inveslmenl in valer-
harvesling infraslruclure al required
scales lhal lake accounl of climale risks.
IIIRI poinls oul lhal higher grain
prices vill also mean higher meal
prices, as feed prices rise. As a resull,
climale change vill reduce lhe grovlh
in meal consumplion slighllv and
cause a more subslanlial fall in cereals
consumplion.
Calorie availabililv in 2O5O vill
decline relalive lo 2OOO levels
lhroughoul lhe developing vorld,
IIIRI slales in ils 2OO9 reporl
on food securilv. Il also predicls
lhal bv 2O5O lhe decline in calorie
availabililv vill increase child
malnulrilion bv 2O/ compared lo a
vorld vilh no climale change.
¨Climale change vill eliminale
much of lhe improvemenl in child
Asia, vhile rainfed rice is seen falling
as much as 16/.
ßv lhe end of lhis cenlurv, soulheasl
Auslralia's Murrav-Darling ßasin food
bovl, one of lhe region's ma|or cereal
suppliers, could see ils grain vield fall
bv 9O/ if climale change is unabaled,
under CSIRÒ prediclions.
¨We're alreadv a land of climale
exlremes, and ve are a food bovl for
so much of lhe vorld, so lhe science
is poinling lo verv severe impacls
on Auslralia,¨ savs Walls. ¨Wilhoul
proper adaplalion and miligalion,
Auslralia could go from being a food
bovl of lhe vorld lo being a nel
imporler of vheal bv 2O5O. There vill
be verv severe impacls on Auslralia
and lherefore our abililv lo feed our
neighbors in lhe region. ¨
Iood prices are predicled lo rise as
a resull of climale change. The WII
reporl noles higher price increases
in 2O5O compared vilh a no-climale-
change scenario. Rice prices vould rise
35/÷37/: vheal prices, 99/÷1O2/:
and maize prices, 58/÷62/.
Climale change is also expecled lo
eliminale much of lhe improvemenl in
combaling child malnulrilion. In Lasl
Asia and lhe Iacihc, aboul 16.5 million
children, inslead of |usl 12 million,
vould be malnourished in 2O5O, a 38/
increase: vhile in Soulh Asia, lhe hgure
vould be 58.1 million inslead of 52.3
million, an 11/ increase.
While lhere are varialions from
communilv lo communilv in hov
climale change vill impacl food
produclion, sludies using various
models are consislenl on lhe ma|or
issues. The WII's C|imcic Cncngc
cn! Hungcr reporl noles lhal climale
change vill reduce agricullural
produclion in mosl of lhe vorld and
increase food prices, food insecurilv,
and malnulrilion. Climale change is
also expecled lo pul lens lo hundreds
of millions of people al risk from
hunger, roughlv a 1O/÷2O/ increase.
The reporl predicls lhal developing
counlries vill be hil harder lhan
"CIlnaIe µoIlcles ln
Asla nusI be IalIored
Io rlsks and counIrµ
clrcunsIances. Asla´s
cIlnaIe ls as dlterse as
lIs Iandscaµe"
-René Gommes, sen|or c||mate
change off|cer at the Natura|
Resources Management and
Env|ronment Department, Food
and Agr|cu|ture Organ|zat|on of the
Un|ted Nat|ons
malnourishmenl levels lhal vould
occur vilh no climale change,¨ il
varns.
AGGRESSIVE INVESTMENT
STRATEGY
IIIRI advocales ¨aggressive
agricullural produclivilv inveslmenls
of $7.1 billion÷$7.3 billion¨ lo raise
calorie consumplion enough lo offsel
lhe negalive impacls of climale change
on lhe heallh and vell-being of
children.
Walls savs carbon sequeslralion
needs lo be a ma|or miligalion slralegv.
¨ßul il musl go hand in hand vilh
culling emissions al lheir source. We
need lo make lhe svilch from dirlv
sources of energv like fossil fuels lo
cleaner sources like vind, hvdro,
biomass, elc.¨
Walls also urges inveslmenl in
agricullural developmenl as an urgenl
miligalion slep.
¨We need a serious redoubling
of inveslmenl in agricullural
developmenl and produclivilv. Thal
means al all levels from lhe besl
science and exlending lhal research
lo people on lhe ground in lheir
communilies. We also need lo invesl
in emergencv services and risk
managemenl so lhal people have lhe
capacilv lo respond lo exlremes of
vealher.¨
The IRC has demonslraled a
lurnaround and is slarling lo lead lhe
vav in clean energv svilchover, Walls
savs. The counlrv is invesling in energv
efhciencv as il dabbles in a clean-lech
revolulion.
¨Il is slovlv lurning lhal ship
around, bul il is slill verv dependenl
on fossil fuels for ils amazing spurl of
grovlh,¨ Walls varns. ¨We have lo
decouple economic grovlh from rising
emissions, and il is possible lo
do lhal.¨ ■
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VULNERABLE TO CLIMATE CHANGE A
man r|des a b|cyc|e through a ñooded
street after a heavy storm |n Shangha|
|n Ju|y 2009. As|a |s one of the most
vu|nerab|e reg|ons to Earth's chang|ng
c||mate, second on|y to sub-Saharan
Afr|ca, experts say.
FLOOD IRRIGATION A r|ce ñe|d |n
Banga|ore |s submerged |n water after
strong monsoon ra|ns. Ind|a's farmers
are dependent on the summer monsoon
for |rr|gat|on of the|r p|ots.
vvv.developmenl.asia
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F000 $£008|TY
G
rassland soils hold enormous polenlial lo
miligale lhe changing climale's impacl on
food securilv bv sloring carbon dioxide and
minimizing nel greenhouse gas emissions,
climale experls sav. Some 3.4 billion heclares of paslures
cover around 3O/ of lhe planel's ice-free land surface and
accounl for 7O/ of ils agricullural lands.
¨Grasslands soak up carbon
from lhe air. When vou have lhal
cover on lhe ground and il isn'l
being overgrazed bv callle or
sheep and vou're nol ploving
il all lhe lime, lhen il is soaking
up carbon,¨ savs Corev Walls,
regional pro|ecls manager of The
Climale Inslilule.
¨Thal makes il beller al
holding valer in lhe soil and
vou gel a carbon sink, vhich
lhen becomes more resilienl lo erosion and
drving oul and pesls and veeds.¨
The Iood and Agricullure Òrganizalion
of lhe Uniled Nalions (IAÒ) is championing
grasslands managemenl as a highlv effeclive
slralegv for absorbing and sloring carbon
dioxide.
Iaslures and rangelands represenl a ¨carbon
sink lhal could be grealer lhan foresls if properlv
managed,¨ a nev sludv bv lhe Rome-based
agencv has found.
Grasslands can reduce lhe vulnerabililv lo
climale change of lhe 1 billion-plus people vho
depend on liveslock for a living, according lo
lhe IAÒ's Rcticu cj |ti!cncc cn Dru|cn!s Pcsicrc|
Susicms cn! C|imcic Cncngc.
Grazing lands are eslimaled lo slore 3O/
of lhe vorld's soil carbon in addilion lo lhe
subslanlial amounl of aboveground carbon
held in lrees, bushes, shrubs, and grasses. ßul overgrazing,
salinizalion, acidihcalion, and olher processes have led lo
land degradalion on aboul 7O/ of paslures. Iressure on
lhe land is also increasing lo meel fasl-groving demand for
meal and dairv producls.
¨Areas covered bv rangeland are huge. Lven a small
increase in soil carbon can polenliallv correspond lo verv
large sequeslralion amounls,¨ savs Rene Gommes, senior
climale change ofhcer vilh IAÒ's Nalural Resources
Managemenl and Lnvironmenl Deparlmenl.
¨Recenl soil degradalion has led lo losses of belveen
3O/ and 75/ of lheir anlecedenl soil organic carbon. The
resloralion of vaslelands,
degraded and deserlihed
soils and ecosvslems (e.g.,
foresl resloralion, improved
paslures), and adoplion of
improved farm managemenl
praclices can enhance and
reslore soil organic carbon,
conlrol and reduce GHG
(greenhouse gas) emissions,
and improve soil qualilv and
soil heallh. Such managemenl
praclices can al lhe same lime improve food
securilv as vell as soil-relaled environmenlal
services,¨ Gommes savs.
Iroper managemenl of paslures and
rangelands can build soil and biomass carbon
and ¨al lhe same lime increase lhe produclivilv
and resilience of agricullure, lhus conlribuling
lo food securilv and poverlv reduclion,¨ IAÒ
Assislanl Direclor-General Alexander Muller
announced in Ianuarv.
Improved managemenl praclices resloring
organic maller lo grassland soils, reducing
erosion, and decreasing losses from burning and
overgrazing can lherefore help sequesler up lo
approximalelv 1 billion lons of carbon a vear.
The IAÒ suggesls lhal a more immedialelv
feasible largel vould be lo place 5/÷1O/
of global grazing lands under carbon
sequeslralion managemenl bv 2O2O, vhich
could slore 184 million lons of carbon a vear.
Increasing lhe amounl of carbon sequeslered in grasslands
can also help pasloralisl populalions adapl lo climale change
because lhe added carbon improves lhe soil's valer relenlion
capacilv and lhus ils abililv lo vilhsland droughl. ■
Grccncr Pasturcs
Grass|and soi|s are seen as a promising way to he|p mitigate c|imate change
ßv ßronvvn Curran
NATURE'S CARBON
SINK Ind|an B|son
crosses a road |n
a grass|and area
of the Ja|dapara
W||d||fe Sanctuary
some 130 k||ometers
from S|||gur| |n Ind|a.
Graz|ng |ands are
est|mated to store
30% of the wor|d's so||
carbon |n add|t|on to
the substant|a| amount
of above-ground
carbon he|d |n trees,
bushes, shrubs, and
grasses.
Some solutions for
climate change
stare you right in the face
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FATHER OF THE GREEN REVOLUTION
Norman Bor|aug, often cred|ted w|th
spark|ng the green revo|ut|on, won the
Nobe| Pr|ze for deve|op|ng d|sease-
res|stant wheat and he|p|ng save m||||ons
of ||ves through h|gh-y|e|d farm|ng.
DIggIng Intn thc
Grccn Rcvn!utInn

Does Asia need another green revo|ution, or do we need to save it from one?
ßY Ilovd Whalev
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opponenls sav lhe movemenl did more
damage lhan good.
During lhe 194Os, a lillle knovn
agronomisl named Norman ßorlaug
helped eslablish, vilh lhe backing
of lhe Rockefeller Ioundalion, an
organizalion lhal allempled lo bring
Uniled Slales-slvle high-vield farming
lechniques lo Mexico. The hearlv high-
vield vheal lhal he helped develop
lransformed Mexico from an imporler
of vheal lo an exporler in fever lhan 2
decades.
ßv lhe 196Os, ßorlaug and lhe ideas
he promoled of breeding crops lo
increase lheir vield had moved lo
India. Coined lhe ¨green revolulion¨
in lhe lale 196Os, ßorlaug broughl
nol onlv nev genes, bul also nev
lhinking aboul ferlilizer and irrigalion
lo a counlrv vilh ancienl farming
lradilions. Wheal produclion in lhe
counlrv nearlv doubled using his
melhods, from 12 million melric lons in
1965 lo over 2O million in 197O.
ßorlaug's melhods spread
vorldvide, vilh green revolulions
laking place in Iakislan, Turkev,
Afghanislan and elsevhere. In 197O,
ßorlaug von lhe Nobel Ieace Irize
for his vork and lhe impacl il had on
vorld hunger.
MIRACLE RICE
ßorlaug's primarv success vas vilh
vheal, vhich is relalivelv easv lo grov
and nalurallv resislanl lo pesls. In lhe
Ihilippines in lhe 196Os, researchers
vorked long hours al lhe Inlernalional
Rice Research Inslilule (IRRI) lo bring
ßorlaug's dream of a green revolulion
lo rice produclion in Asia.
¨Al lhe lime, il vasn'l |usl an issue
of hunger. Ieople vere lalking aboul
mass slarvalion in Asia and around lhe
vorld,¨ savs Kvanchai Gomez, vho
J
oel Malivag has a slralegv for
making lhe 1.5-heclare rice farm
lhal he vorks in lhe norlhern
Ihilippines a success: he doesn'l
grov much rice on il.
Ònlv aboul a lhird of lhe farm is
devoled lo rice. Òn lhe resl of lhe land,
he has fruil lrees, vegelable gardens,
chickens, and a hshpond. He's even
producing some lradilional medicine.
¨Rice farming doesn'l earn enough
lo supporl a familv,¨ savs Malivag,
vho is parl of a Ihilippine governmenl
program called Pc|cucmcncn, or lhe
Weallh in Rice Iro|ecl. Il leaches rice
farmers lo diversifv bevond rice lo
boosl lheir income and guard againsl
devaslaling vealher evenls and
unprediclable markel forces.
¨This is lhe onlv vav lhev vill
survive,¨ savs Rizal Corales, vho
heads lhe program. ¨Rice farmers can'l
live on groving rice alone.¨
Malivag doesn'l have much lo sav
aboul lhe green revolulion lhal broughl
high-vield farming lo Asia 4 decades
ago vilh lhe hopes of making small
farmers prohlable so lhev could help
feed lhe region. He's busv feeding
chickens and valering lomalo planls.
A DEBATED LEGACY
The legacv of lhe green revolulion
is a maller of much debale. ßul all
sides agree lhal il didn'l pan oul lhe
vav mosl had hoped. Iroponenls sav
lhe achievemenls have vaned, and
lons lo 7.7 lons in 2 decades, according
lo a reporl from lhe Iood and
Agricullure Òrganizalion of lhe Uniled
Nalions (IAÒ).
Mass slarvalion never look place,
and some sav lodav lhal il vas as
much hvpe as a real lhreal. And despile
lhe dramalic increases in produclivilv
in manv counlries around lhe vorld,
lhe green revolulion also did nol
eliminale vorld hunger, as manv had
hoped. There are more lhan 1 billion
undernourished people vorldvide
lodav, decades afler high-vield
farming vas inlroduced, according
lo lhe Uniled Nalions' World Iood
Irogramme.
¨Thal means one in nearlv six people
do nol gel enough food lo be heallhv
and lead an aclive life,¨ lhe agencv
noles in a recenl reporl. ¨Hunger and
malnulrilion are in facl lhe number one
risk lo lhe heallh vorldvide÷grealer
lhan AIDS, malaria, and luberculosis
combined.¨
ANOTHER REVOLUTION
Manv of lhe agribusiness corporalions
lhal embraced lhe green revolulion
sav il musl be repealed lo bring dovn
vorld hunger. ßaver CropScience, a
German-based agribusiness gianl vilh
more lhan 18,OOO emplovees in 12O
counlries, oullines a bleak silualion if
high-vield agricullure is nol quicklv
used vorldvide.
According lo lhe companv,
hisloricallv lov global food reserves
cannol be replenished bv increasing lhe
amounl of land used lo produce food.
Meanvhile, demand is rising, nol onlv
for food, bul also for animal feed and
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 45
vas vilh IRRI in manv roles for more
lhan 3 decades. ¨We vere vorking lo
reverse vhal ve sav as a lrend lovard
slarvalion. Ieople vere scared.¨
IRRI vorked on lhe problem vilh
a varialion of melhods used bv rice
farmers for cenluries. Iarmers have
lradilionallv lried lo separale, or purifv,
lheir besl seeds in hopes of planling
lhe mosl produclive slrains. Al IRRI,
scienlisls in lhe laboralorv made
dramalic slrides in increasing vields
lhrough similar, lhough svslemalic,
cross-pollinalion.
In 1966, IRRI research isolaled a
rice varielv vilh lhe lechnical name
IR8, laler dubbed ¨Miracle Rice¨ bv
nonscienlisls, vhich doubled lhe
vield of regular varielies. Miracle
Rice vas crediled vilh increasing rice
produclion in lhe Ihilippines from 3.7
"No one has µeI Io be
abIe Io flnd a uaµ Io
lnµrote dlsIrlbuIlon of
anµ croµ. IeI aIone rlce.
and hate a reaI lnµacI
on uorId hunger"
-Kwancha| Gomez, execut|ve
d|rector of the Tha| R|ce Foundat|on
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HARVEST FOR THE WORLD Many
agr|bus|ness corporat|ons that support
h|gh-y|e|d farm|ng say a second green
revo|ut|on |s needed to br|ng down wor|d
hunger.
planls lo produce biofuels. Climale
change could make lhe silualion
dramalicallv vorse.
¨We need inlensive research inlo
agricullure so lhal ve can meel lhe
challenges of food produclion and
also make lhe besl possible use of
our arable resources,¨ savs Iriedrich
ßerschauer, chairman of lhe board of
ßaver CropScience. ¨Whal ve need
is nolhing less lhan a second green
revolulion.¨
Òn lhe olher side of lhe debale,
agricullural researcher Ieler Rossel
noles in a reporl for lhe Inslilule for
Iood and Developmenl Iolicv, also
knovn as Iood Iirsl, lhal lhe green
revolulion crealed more hunger lhan il
relieved.
¨Hunger is nol caused bv a shorlage
of food, and cannol be eliminaled bv
producing more,¨ savs Rossel. ¨This
is vhv ve musl be skeplical vhen
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vvv.developmenl.asia
Monsanlo, DuIonl, Novarlis, and
olher chemical-cum-biolechnologv
companies lell us lhal genelic
engineering vill boosl crop vields and
feed lhe hungrv.¨
¨The lechnologies lhev push have
dubious benehls and vell-documenled
risks, and lhe second green revolulion
lhev promise is no more likelv lo end
hunger lhan lhe hrsl,¨ savs Rossel.
Gomez, vho is nov lhe execulive
direclor of lhe Thai Rice Ioundalion,
lhe rice organizalion supporled bv lhe
Thai monarchv, queslions lhe nolion
lhal beller food dislribulion vill solve
vorld hunger.
¨This is lhe nolion lhal if vou have
lhis much rice, lhen vou can feed
evervone in lhe vorld,¨ savs Gomez.
¨ßul hov do vou manage lhis` If il
could have been done, il vould have
been done. No one has vel lo be able lo
hnd a vav lo improve dislribulion of
ASIA'S STAPLE R|ce feeds about ha|f of
human|ty but on|y a few countr|es have
a |arge surp|us |n supp|y. Even some of
the wor|d's b|ggest producers are hard-
pressed to grow enough to feed the|r
own peop|e.
R|ce's Pr|cey
Odyssey from
the F|e|d to
the Tab|e
The avai|abi|ity and price
of rice for consumers in
Asia is based on a maze
of peop|e, regu|ations,
and natura| events
Research bv Ilovd Whalev
Sources: |rcm Scc! ic Snc|j. Òrdonez,
L., and Associales. 2OO5.
1nc Ricc Pricc Crisis. Wnu is ii
ncppcning? Inlernalional Rice
Research Inslilule vebsile.
1
THE
AGRICULTURAL
RESEARCHERS
Governmenl
funding has been
slashed for lhe scienlisls
vho come up vilh
higher vield and more
durable varielies of
rice. Developing nev
varielies of rice is a lime-
consuming process lhal
musl be funded vears
before a crisis develops.
2
THE FARM
SUPPLIERS
Irices for
ferlilizers
have risen
dramalicallv, and
lhe cosl of urea, an
inorganic compound
imporlanl for use in
farming, has nearlv
doubled in lhe pasl 4
vears. Some suppliers
offer malerials al
high prices and
lake pavmenl upon
harvesl.
3
THE FARMERS
Rice farmers have
less land, due lo olher
uses such as urban
developmenl and svilching
lo more lucralive cash crops,
and lhev are producing less
rice on lhe land lhal lhev
do have. Conlribuling lo
lhe problem are peslicide-
resislanl pesls and exlreme
vealher evenls, such as
slorms, droughls, and ßoods.
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 47
4
THE RICE
TRADERS AND
MILLERS
In some counlries,
lraders manipulale small
cash-slrapped farmers
bv offering high-inleresl
loans, or supplies such
as seeds and ferlilizer,
againsl a sel price for
lhe harvesled rice. This
allovs some lraders lo
sel arlihciallv lov prices
for lhe crop. ßolh millers
and lraders (and olhers
in lhe produclion chain)
somelimes hoard rice lo
speculale on rising prices.
5
THE
GOVERNMENT
Governmenls
slockpile rice for
emergencv uses, and as
a vav lo inlervene in lhe
markel and keep prices
dovn. Manv of lhese
slockpiles have decreased
dramalicallv in lhe lasl
decade and removed
one of governmenls' kev
lools in conlrolling price
hikes. Manv governmenls
have also decreased lheir
inveslmenls in irrigalion
infraslruclure, vhich
allovs rice farmers lo
harvesl more lhan once
a vear.
7
THE CONSUMER
More people in more
counlries are consuming
rice, including in Africa,
vhich nov consumes one-lhird of
lhe vorld's lolal lrade in rice, and
lhe prosperous Middle Lasl, vhich
has increased demand and driven
up prices. Globallv, lhe demand for
rice is increasing bv aboul 5 million
lons each vear, vhich means lhal
in 1O vears lhe vorld vill need lo
produce 5O million lons more lhan il
does nov. Ianic buving bv domeslic
consumers also causes arlihcial price
hikes. ■
anv crop, lel alone rice, and have a real
impacl on vorld hunger.¨
Gomez noles lhal lhough
scienlihcallv based high-vield
agricullure has ils problems, il has
shovn resulls in helping lo address
vorld hunger in lhe pasl and can
do so again. ¨Scienlisls are single
minded,¨ she savs. ¨When lhev inlend
lo do somelhing, lhere is a possibililv
of success. Dislribulion is a polilical
problem, and for polilicians, success is
gelling elecled again.¨
BREEDING HOSTILITY
ßorlaug, lhe falher of lhe green
revolulion vho died in Seplember
2OO9, fell oul of favor bv some in
recenl vears as high-vield inlensive
agricullural lechniques became more
conlroversial. In a 1997 inlerviev vilh
1nc Ai|cniic Mcnin|u magazine, he
dismissed crilicism of his lechniques,
vhich manv believe have saved
hundreds of millions of lives.
¨Some of lhe environmenlal
lobbvisls of lhe Weslern nalions are
lhe sall of lhe earlh, bul manv of lhem
are elilisls,¨ he lold lhe magazine.
¨Thev've never experienced lhe
phvsical sensalion of hunger. Thev do
lheir lobbving from comforlable ofhce
suiles in Washinglon or ßrussels. If
lhev lived |usl one monlh amid lhe
miserv of lhe developing vorld, as I
have for hflv vears, lhev'd be crving
oul for lraclors and ferlilizer and
irrigalion canals and be oulraged lhal
fashionable elilisls back home vere
lrving lo denv lhem lhese lhings.¨
ßill Gales, lhe founder of lhe ßill &
Melinda Gales Ioundalion, vhich has
donaled $5O million for rice research
in Asia, calls ßorlaug ¨a genuine hero¨
and savs lhe green revolulion cul
global hunger in half.
In a slalemenl from his foundalion,
Gales caulioned lhal progress lovard
easing global hunger is ¨endangered
bv an ideological vedge lhal lhrealens
lo splil lhe movemenl in lvo. Òn one
side, lhere are groups lhal supporl
lechnological solulions lo increase
agricullural produclivilv vilhoul
proper regard lo environmenlal and
suslainabililv concerns. Òn lhe olher,
lhere are lhose vho reacl negalivelv lo
anv emphasis on produclivilv.¨
¨Il's a false choice, and il's dangerous
for lhe held,¨ Gales savs. ¨Il blocks
imporlanl advances. Il breeds hoslililv
among people vho need lo vork
logelher. And il makes il hard lo launch
a comprehensive program lo help
poor farmers. The facl is, ve need bolh
produclivilv and suslainabililv÷and
lhere is no reason ve can'l have bolh.¨ ■
6
THE
WHOLESALERS,
RETAILERS, AND
EXPORTERS
This group also hoards
slocks of rice al limes lo
speculale on increasing
prices, bul can also drive
up prices due lo high fuel
cosls because lhev bear
lhe brunl of gelling rice
lo markel and lhe cosls of
shipping overseas.
48 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O vvv.developmenl.asia
0FF Th£ $h£LF
Thc AId Traµ
Hard Truths about Ending Poverty
Bu R. G|cnn Hu||cr! cn! Wi||icm Duggcn, Cc|um|ic Unitcrsiiu Prcss,
Scpicm|cr 2009,

$22.95
I
n The Ai! 1rcp, Columbia ßusiness School professors argue lhal lhe currenl
svslem of aid has failed lo eliminale poverlv because
local businesses have nol been made lhe largel of
funding. Ior inslance, inslead of digging a communilv
vell for free, aid agencies should be invesling in a local
companv lhal digs vells.
The aulhors espouse a large-scale pro-business program
pallerned afler lhe Marshall Ilan of 1948, vhich is crediled
for helping rebuild Weslern Lurope afler World War II.
R. Glenn Hubbard is dean of Columbia ßusiness School
and lhe Russell L. Carson Irofessor of Lconomics and
Iinance. William Duggan is senior leclurer in business al
Columbia ßusiness School, vhere he leaches slralegv in graduale and execulive
courses. He has 2O vears of experience in foreign aid.
¨...offers a differenl and logical, if emolionallv counler-inluilive, approach lo
foreign aid. Thal is, lhe 'lrap' is in assuming charilv is lhe ansver for lhe vorld's 3
billion people living in poverlv÷and lhe solulion, according lo lhe aulhors, lies in
business.¨÷Sarah Lvnch, |cr|cs
¨.arliculales a conslruclive sel of ideas aboul hov lo reform foreign aid. Il
should inleresl lhose vho are convinced bv lhe conclusions of lhe crilics of aid,
bul remain disappoinled bv lhe poverlv of lheir prescriplions.¨÷1nc |ccncmisi ■
AItcr thc Icc
Life, Death and Geopo|itics
in the New Arctic
Bu A|un An!crscn, Smiinscnicn,
Dcccm|cr 2009, $26.99
F
ormer Ncu Scicniisi edilor Alun
Anderson lells lhe ¨high-slakes
slorv of Arclic lransformalion¨
in Ajicr inc |cc. As scienlisls
sludv lhe effecls of global varming in
lhe region and hov lhese are going lo
change lhe resl of lhe planel, polilicians
and businessmen invesligale lhe
prospecls for oil exploralion in lhe Arclic
Òcean, said lo be lhe lasl fronlier for lhis
diminishing resource.
The book also lalks aboul lhe
impacl of lhese developmenls on local
communilies, such as lhe reindeer
herders of Siberia and Scandinavia,
and lhe seals, birds, vhales, and olher
crealures lhal live in lhe Arclic.
Anderson vas born in Wales. He
sludied biologv al lhe Universilv of
Sussex and earned a docloral degree al
lhe Universilv of Ldinburgh. He vas
edilor-in-chief and publishing direclor
of Ncu Scicniisi for 12 vears.
¨.offers a clear and chilling accounl
of lhe science of lhe Arclic and a
gripping glimpse of hov lhe fulure
mav lurn oul lhere.¨÷1nc |ccncmisi
¨...asserls lhal lhe davs of lhe 'iconic
big beasls of lhe Arclic' are numbered,
bul remains hopeful aboul lhe Arclic's
uncerlain fulure.¨÷Pu||isncrs Wcck|u ■
Thc Rnutcs nI Man
How Roads Are Changing the Wor|d and the Way We Live Today
Bu 1c! Ccnctcr, Kncpj, |c|rucru 2010,

$26.95
A
merican aulhor Ted Conover examines lhe cosls
and benehls of building roads in 1nc Rcuics cj
Mcn. Traveling from Ladakh lo lhe Wesl ßank,
he explores hov six kev roads are lransforming
landscapes and communilies. Conover is also lhe aulhor of
Ncujcck. Gucr!ing Sing Sing, vhich von lhe Nalional ßook
Crilics Circle Avard and vas a hnalisl for lhe Iulilzer Irize.
¨The graceful and evocalive descriplions of some
speclacular parls of lhe vorld allov lhe big queslions aboul
roads and vhal lhev do lo people lo sleal inlo lhe reader's
mind almosl unnoliced.¨÷1nc |ccncmisi
¨The six road silualions he describes are undeniable quandaries, and ve ove
il lo lhe people caughl up in lhem, nol lo menlion lo our planel, lo consider vhal
policies, if anv, should engineer lhe roads lhrough evervone's lives.¨÷William T.
Vollmann, 1nc Ncu Ycrk 1imcs ■
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 49
Tnn BIg tn FaI!
The Inside Story of How Wa|| Street and Washington Fought to Save
the Financia| Systemċand Themse|ves
Bu An!rcu Rcss Scrkin, Viking, Ocic|cr 2009, $32.95
N
amed one of 1nc |ccncmisi´s books of lhe vear for 2OO9, 1cc Big ic
|ci| lakes readers behind lhe scenes, giving lhem a delailed accounl
of lhe evenls lhal led lo lhe grealesl hnancial crisis since lhe Greal
Depression.
Andrev Ross Sorkin claims lo have unprecedenled access lo lhe plavers
involved in lhis real-life lhriller. He is 1nc Ncu Ycrk 1imcs's chief mergers and
acquisilions reporler and a columnisl. He is also lhe edilor of Dealßook (nvlimes.
com]dealbook), an online dailv hnancial reporl he slarled in
2OO1, and an assislanl edilor of business and hnance nevs.
¨Too good lo pul dovn.Il is lhe slorv of lhe aclors in lhe
mosl exlraordinarv hnancial speclacle in 8O vears, and il is
lold brillianllv.¨÷1nc |ccncmisi
¨Weighing in al 6OO pages (and immedialelv dubbed bv
cvnics 'Too ßig lo Read' or |usl 'Too ßig'), Ross Sorkin's
denselv delailed and aslonishing narralive of lhe epic
hnancial crisis of 2OO8...|lakes] lhe reader inside lhe mind of
(Lehman's Richard) Iuld and olhers as lhev slruggled lo deal
vilh unimaginable evenls.¨÷Iohn Gapper, 1nc |incncic| 1imcs ■
Fnrccs nI Fnrtunc
The Rise of the New Mus|im Midd|e C|ass and What It Wi|| Mean for Our Wor|d
Bu Vc|i Ncsr, |rcc Prcss, Scpicm|cr 2009, $26
V
ali Nasr, aulhor of lhe beslseller 1nc Snic Rctitc|, comes up vilh
anolher book lhal is bound lo spark debale over developmenls in lhe
Muslim vorld. In |crccs cj |criunc, he lalks aboul lhe ¨Dubai effecl,¨
and hov il is likelv lo be replicaled in olher parls of lhe region vilh
lhe rise of a business-minded middle class.
¨The greal ballle for lhe soul of Iran÷and for lhe soul of
lhe region as a vhole÷vill be foughl nol over religion, bul
over business and capilalism,¨ Nasr savs.
ßorn in Iran, lhe aulhor is a professor of inlernalional
relalions al lhe Ilelcher School of Lav and Diplomacv of
Tufls Universilv, an ad|uncl senior fellov al lhe Council
on Ioreign Relalions, and a senior fellov of The Dubai
Inilialive al Harvard Universilv's Iohn I. Kennedv School of
Governmenl.
¨Nasr brillianllv narrales lhe lorlured hislories of lhe middle classes in Iakislan
and Iran...The road lo a nev Middle Lasl, vhere Turkev is lhe norm ralher
lhan lhe exceplion, vill be a long and perilous one. Lven so, |crccs cj |criunc
is as hopeful as il is sobering, and Nasr makes a convincing case for oplimism
lempered vilh caulion and palience.¨÷Michael I. Tollen, 1nc Ncu Ycrk 1imcs ■
Thc Rc!cnt!css
Rcvn!utInn
A History of Capita|ism
Bu jcucc App|c|u, W. W. Ncricn c
Ccmpcnu, jcnucru 2010, $29.95

A
merican hislorian Iovce
Applebv delves inlo lhe
cenluries-long hislorv of
capilalism. According lo
lhe book descriplion provided bv lhe
publisher, she discusses in 1nc Rc|cni|css
Rctc|uiicn hov capilalism has become
a svslem lhal generales ¨veallh, pover,
and nev ideas,¨ reshaping ¨socielies in
a conslanl surge of change.¨
Applebv is a professor of hislorv
emerila al Universilv of California in
Los Angeles, and a pasl presidenl of lhe
American Hislorical Associalion and lhe
Òrganizalion of American Hislorians.
¨Applebv, a dislinguished hislorian
vho has dedicaled her career lo
sludving lhe origins of capilalism in lhe
Anglo-American vorld, here broadens
her scope lo lake in lhe global hislorv
of capilalism in all ils crealive÷and
deslruclive÷glorv.In lhe book's hnal
chaplers, Applebv lraces lhe manv
species of capilalism lhal have evolved
in lhe poslvar era, in places like lhe
Uniled Slales, Iapan, Irance, Germanv,
Singapore. |and lhe Republic of] Korea.
Manv of lhese success slories reveal lhal
governmenl inlervenlion, far from being
inimical lo capilalisl enlerprise, can help
suslain il.¨÷Slephen Mihm, 1nc Ncu
Ycrk 1imcs ■
5O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O
Just GIvc Thcm
thc Mnncv
Unconditiona| cash transfers cha||enge traditiona| views of
deve|opment workċby giving money direct|y to the poor and
|etting them decide how to spend it
ßY Ilovd Whalev
A8T|0L£
vvv.developmenl.asia
professional experls lo lead in
idenlifving suilable livelihoods
ralher lhan empovering individual
households lo make diverse choices,¨
noles an Òxfam sludv on lhe program.
The program also culs dovn on
¨lhe high level of adminislralive
and consullancv cosls faced bv
inlernalional NGÒs |nongovernmenlal
organizalions] and donors due lo
lhe high number of pro|ecl slaff and
parlners involved in designing and
implemenling slandard livelihood
annual income of a poor household in
lhe commune.
The program is a varialion of lhe
increasinglv popular ¨condilional cash
lransfer¨ programs lhal provide cash
pavmenls condilional on providing a
service of some kind (such as vork),
or laking parl in a sociallv benehcial
aclivilv, such as allending a school
or heallh clinic, or agreeing lo spend
lhe monev on a specihc priorilv, such
as housing or slarling a business. In
conlrasl, ¨uncondilional cash lransfers¨
are cash pavmenls made lo poor
individuals or households vilhoul
condilions allached.
¨Uncondilional cash pavmenls
empover people,¨ savs Sleve Irice-
Thomas, lhe Viel Nam Counlrv
Direclor of Òxfam Greal ßrilain, vhich
ran lhe program in An Loc, a poor rice-
groving communilv along Viel Nam's
cenlral coasl. ¨These pavmenls allov
people lo spend hovever lhev deem
appropriale. We fell lhal poor people
clearlv have lhe righl lo decide hov
lhe monev is spenl. Whal beller lhan lo
pul monev in lheir hands and lel lhem
decide vhal lo do vilh il`¨
MAKING DIVERSE CHOICES
The pro|ecl challenges some lradilional
vievs aboul developmenl assislance.
¨The slandard approach of
developmenl pro|ecls is for
T
hree vears ago, Ho Van Tin
supporled his vife, lhree
children, and one grandchild
vilh lhe income derived
from one cov and one buffalo. Thal
vas before lhe residenl of An Loc
Commune in cenlral Viel Nam vas
given lhe equivalenl of aboul $15O for
his familv lo spend as lhev chose.
Todav, lhe Tin familv has four covs
and one buffalo, and lhev ovn lheir
home.
¨Wilh lhe monev ve vere provided,
ve boughl a cov, and nov ve have
four,¨ savs Tin. ¨We renl oul lhe cov
for ploving, bul mosl of lhe monev
comes from vhen lhe cov has a calf.
We can keep lhe calf, feed il up, and
laler sell il or |usl sell il as a calf if
ve need lhe monev. Wilh lhe recenl
increase in lhe value of covs, ve make
around 5 million dong ($26O) or more
per cov: I recenllv sold a calf for 4
million dong ($2OO). Ior me, lhis is a
good life change!¨
Tin's familv look parl in an alvpical
pro|ecl bv lhe aid organizalion Òxfam
Greal ßrilain, vhich gave villagers
in An Loc Commune, in Ha Tinh
Irovince, a one-lime cash pavmenl.
The monev came vilh no condilions,
excepl lhe agreemenl lo reporl over a
3-vear period on hov lhe monev vas
used. Some pavmenls vere as much
as $375, more lhan half of lhe average
household level. The same argumenls
applv for household budgel supporl
as nalional budgel supporl, vhich is
common.¨
Though manv inlernalional
organizalions provide direcl cash
pavmenls afler nalural disaslers,
lhe program being allempled bv
Òxfam÷providing cash in a non-
disasler silualion÷has nol vel
caughl on vilh large developmenl
organizalions. The Asian
Developmenl ßank and World ßank
don'l have similar programs, lhough
Irice-Thomas noles lhal lhev are
moniloring Òxfam's vork in lhe area.
Slarled in 2OO6, Òxfam's program
gave cash granls lo 55O poor and
near-poor households in An Loc.
Minimal slrings vere allached:
monev could nol be used for alcohol,
gambling, or drugs. Iamilies vere
chosen lhrough a village meeling
in vhich residenls decided vhich
families vere mosl in need.
Revievs of lhe program found
lhal families had used lhe monev lo
improve lheir household food securilv
and overall income, vilh manv
invesling in covs lhal generale long-
lerm revenue for lhe familv, Òxfam
found. School dropoul rales decreased,
and gender equilv in lhe village
improved, vilh vomen sharing conlrol
of lhe monev. Mosl signihcanllv, inilial
revievs shoved lhe poverlv rale
decreased bv more lhan one lhird in
lvo vears, lo 4O.2/ in 2OO8 from 65.1/
in 2OO6. Village leaders allribuled lhe
decrease direcllv lo lhe cash handouls.
MIXED RESULTS
Uncondilional cash lransfer programs
in nonemergencv silualions are nol
common enough lo have broad dala
on lheir effecliveness. Indeed, some
programs have shovn less posilive
resulls. A Iebruarv 2OO8 reporl in
India's Busincssucr|! magazine, for
example, described a direcl cash
lransfer program in Tamil Nadu in
vhich benehciaries spenl lhe monev
on cellular phones, soda pop, and
molorcvcles for vhich lhe families
could nol afford lo buv fuel.
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 51
pro|ecls.¨ Il also direcllv challenges
¨beliefs in lhe developmenl communilv
aboul poor people's abililv lo make
vise and ralional use of cash.¨
Irice-Thomas noles lhal despile
lhe unusual melhod of dislribuling
lhe assislance, lhe program is acluallv
a microcosm of vhal is happening
globallv in developmenl assislance.
¨Uncondilional cash lransfers
are consislenl vilh vhal donors are
doing al lhe global level,¨ savs Irice-
Thomas. ¨This is budgel supporl al lhe
I
I
C
T
U
R
L

C
R
L
D
I
T
:
A
I
I
NO STRINGS ATTACHED Women sit
counting money at a market in Viet
Nam. Oxfam gave viIIagers in An Loc
Commune, Ha Tinh province a one-time
cash payment with no conditions, except
that they report on how the money was
used. The resuIts were encouraging.
¨Whal helps lhe poor more, giving
lhem fish or leaching lhem hov lo`
Some vould sav lhe former presumes
lhe poor aren'l all lhal hungrv and
vill eal a lillle bil more and lhen vill
go drinking vilh lhe cash lransfers.
Òlhers varn lhal cash lransfers
could breed dependence of lhe
beneficiaries on lhe slale,¨ vrole Iu|a
Mehra in lhe magazine. ¨Irograms
need lo vork bolh as safelv nels and
springboards. Cash lransfers do nol
affecl slruclural poverlv.¨
A 2OO4 Universilv of California
al ßerkelev reporl, Ccn!iiicnc| Ccsn
1rcnsjcr Prcgrcms. Arc 1ncu Rcc||u
Mcgic Bu||cis?, noles lhal cash lransfer
programs lhal impose no condilions
can, over lhe long lerm, breed lhe same
kinds of dependencv problems lhal
velfare pavmenl svslems do in lhe
Uniled Slales and Lurope.
¨To reduce poverlv in lhe shorl lerm,
cash lransfer programs vould have lo
impose lime limils in order lo obviale
dependence and graduale benehciaries
vho are no longer poor,¨ lhe reporl
noles. ¨A program lhal seeks lo reduce
poverlv in lhe medium lerm requires
complemenlarv policies lhal fosler lhe
adull benehciaries' aulonomous capacilv
lo generale income, as vell as policies
I
I
C
T
U
R
L

C
R
L
D
I
T
:

H
L
M
I
S
.
I
R
A8T|0L£
lhal increase local demand for vork.¨
This begs lhe queslion of vhelher
uncondilional cash lransfers are an
innovalive, nev form of developmenl
assislance or simplv lhe inlroduclion of
Norlh American and Luropean velfare
svslems lo developing counlries. Irice-
Thomas slronglv re|ecls lhis nolion.
¨Welfare pavmenls in lhe US
and Lurope are long-lerm, small
pavmenls,¨ he savs. ¨This vas a large,
one-off lransfer, vhich households
knev vas coming for monlhs in
advance so lhev could plan for il and
avoid lhe vindfall effecl. Il is differenl
from velfare in lhal il doesn'l fosler
dependence.¨
Irice-Thomas noles lhe Òxfam
program is nol meanl lo replace
exisling developmenl inilialives.
¨This is one veapon in lhe
developmenl arsenal,¨ he savs. ¨This
is imporlanl, bul il is nol enough.
Il's nol a magic bullel. Ioverlv is
mulli-dimensional. The causes and
experiences of poverlv are varied. ßul
in lhe parlicular case of lhis program,
lhe lives of a signihcanl number of
households have changed for lhe beller,
and lhal change is slill apparenl 3 vears
laler. Thal doesn'l mean ve should slop
vorrving aboul educalion services and
vomen's polilical parlicipalion and lhe
manv olher aspecls of developmenl
assislance. This is a useful lool, bul nol
lhe onlv one.¨ ■
CASH COWS Reviews of the Oxfam
program show famiIies use the money
to improve househoId food security and
overaII income, with many investing in
cows that generate Iong-term revenue.
"The sIandard
aµµroach of
deteIoµnenI µro]ecIs
ls for µrofesslonaI
exµerIs Io Iead ln
ldenIlfµlng sulIabIe
IlteIlhoods. raIher
Ihan enµouerlng
lndltlduaI househoIds
Io nake dlterse
cholces"
-Oxfam Great Br|ta|n
52 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O vvv.developmenl.asia
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Easv Targcts
In conf|ict zones throughout Asia and the rest of the wor|d, deve|opment professiona|s
are doing their jobs in increasing|y dangerous environments
ßY Ioe Cochrane
A8T|0L£
vvv.developmenl.asia
good old davs, compared vilh lhe
unprecedenled levels of violence and
murder lhev have faced in recenl
vears. Todav, il is nearlv impossible
lo conducl suslained humanilarian
operalions lhere, lhev sav.
¨Agencies nov have a lhreal-lo-
benehl malrix on lheir operalions,¨
explains an Auslralian aid vorker
based in Africa, vho asked nol lo be
named because il mighl endanger his
relief vork.
In Somalia in 2OO8 alone, 35
humanilarian vorkers vere killed, 18
vere seriouslv in|ured, and more lhan
a dozen olhers vere abducled. The
shocking levels of violence dropped
lasl vear, bul lhe reason gave no cause
for celebralion: lhere vere verv fev aid
vorkers lefl lo largel.
B
eing an aid vorker in
Somalia in lhe 1999Os vas a
bil like being a high-slakes
gambler on a losing slreak:
lhe odds alvavs favored somelhing
bad happening. Dailv specials included
being harassed or robbed al roadside
checkpoinls manned bv criminal gangs,
occasionallv being bealen bv lhugs,
suffering a concussion or broken bones
in a car accidenl, or conlracling dengue
fever, cholera, or anv of a dozen olher
diseases common lo lhe area.
Incrediblv and crvplicallv,
veleran aid vorkers in Somalia look
longinglv back on lhe 199Os as lhe
SECURITY ISSUES United Nations trucks
carrying food and emergency suppIies
drive through the town of Vavuniya in Sri
Lanka in October 2008. The UN resumed
aid suppIies to the then rebeI-heId
northern areas after receiving guarantees
for the safety of aid workers. The 25-year
war between the government and TamiI
Tiger rebeIs ended in 2009.
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 55
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nongovernmenl organizalions (NGÒs)
vilh vhich lhev are associaled
have risen, bul incidenls involving
lhe slaunchlv neulral Inlernalional
Commillee of lhe Red Cross have
fallen.
¨The UN ßag no longer ensures
proleclion. Thal's vhal vou hear in
lhe corridors of pover,¨ savs Graeme
Membrev, a senior securilv adviser
vilh lhe UN Deparlmenl of Safelv and
Securilv based in Iakarla. ¨And I'm nol
|usl lalking aboul lhe UN, bul lhose
vhom ve parlner vilh÷all lhe ma|or
NGÒs.¨
Membrev allribules lhe shifl from
seeing humanilarian vorkers as neulral
angels of mercv lo legilimale largels lo
lhe end of lhe Cold War. ¨Lasl versus
Wesl,¨ he explains, vas replaced vilh
smaller conßicls relaled lo nalionalism,
elhnicilv, and religion.
¨All of a sudden ve had less
formalized securilv slruclures. Irom lhal,
vou end up gelling a veakening of lav
and order, and people lake advanlage of
lhal,¨ Membrev savs. ¨Iconic svmbols,
such as lhe UN ßag or NGÒ banners, are
no longer secure bul a largel.¨
lhe vorsl vear on record, vilh 26O aid
vorkers killed, kidnapped, or seriouslv
in|ured in violenl allacks around lhe
vorld. ßv comparison, lhere vere onlv
32 such incidenls a decade ago.
Afghanislan, Somalia, and lhe Darfur
region of Sudan logelher accounl for
more lhan 6O/ of violenl incidenls and
aid vorker viclims, according lo lhe
reporl.
¨Relalive rales of allacks per number
of aid vorkers in lhe held have also
increased bv 61/,¨ lhe reporl slales.
¨The 2OO8 falalilv rale for inlernalional
aid vorkers exceeds lhal of UN |Uniled
Nalions] peacekeeping lroops.¨
The slalislics are lelling. In lhe
pasl 12 vears, allacks againsl UN
personnel and manv of lhe privale
¨There vere 14O incidenls everv
2 davs in 2OO8: roadside bombs,
abduclions and assassinalions÷
hardened pre-medilaled crimes, nol lhe
opporlunislic robberv on lhe side of lhe
road,¨ he explains. ¨Il's a complelelv
differenl sel of lhreals lhal are nov
facing humanilarian vorkers.¨
And Somalia is |usl lhe beginning of
lhe slorv.
AID WORKERS TARGETED
In Afghanislan, Iraq, Iakislan, Sri
Lanka, and olher counlries vilh conßicl
zones lhroughoul Asia and lhe resl
of lhe vorld, humanilarian vorkers
and developmenl professionals are
laboring in increasinglv dangerous
environmenls. Since 1997, lhe number
of allacks in vhich aid vorkers vere
killed, kidnapped, or in|ured has risen
dramalicallv vorldvide, according
lo a 2OO9 reporl bv lhe Cenler on
Inlernalional Cooperalion and lhe
Òverseas Developmenl Inslilule. There
vas a sharp increase in lhese incidenls,
parlicularlv kidnappings, from 2OO6 lo
2OO9.
In Somalia, 2OO8 is believed lo be
IMPROMPTU PALLBEARERS HospitaI
workers carry the cofñn of one of three
femaIe internationaI aid workers kiIIed
in an attack cIaimed by the insurgent
TaIiban in August 2008 in the province
of Logar, some 50 kiIometers south of
KabuI, Afghanistan.
56 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O
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ongoing violence connecled vilh
Islamic movemenls. Il's places like
lhal vhere ve have bolh exlremisls
and people associaled vilh 'Weslern'
organizalions,¨ explains Slephanie
ßunker, a spokesvoman for lhe
UN Òfhce for lhe Coordinalion of
Humanilarian Affairs in Nev York.
¨Religion plavs a role, bul also lhere
are polilical conßicls in places like
Iakislan. This is a slruggle belveen
slale and non-slale aclors vho are
|ousling for pover, inßuence, lerrilorv.¨
Slalislics compiled bv lhe UN
involving ils personnel shov
lhousands of incidenls in non-Muslim
counlries across lhe globe÷ranging
from rouline break-ins and lhefls lo
serious problems, such as inlimidalion,
assaulls, kidnappings, and murders.
Hovever, olhers sav il is no
coincidence lhal Muslim nalions÷
Afghanislan, Iraq, Iakislan,
and Somalia÷are among lhe
mosl dangerous in lhe vorld for
humanilarian operalions. All are
considered largels in lhe Uniled Slales
¨var on lerror.¨
¨There is a religious elemenl lo
il because |aid vorkers] are seen as
lools of Weslern governmenls,¨ savs
lhe Auslralian aid vorker in Africa,
vho also vorked in Afghanislan and
Iakislan. ¨Thev are a force mulliplier
for lhe mililarv. Thev vanl lo clear, hold,
build, lo vin lhe hearls and minds.¨
POLITICIZING AID
Hollv Rilchie knovs a lhing or lvo
aboul being perceived as a Weslern
lackev. The 33-vear-old ßrilon vas once
an inveslmenl banker, bul gave il up lo
fulhll her dream of doing developmenl
vork. She earned a masler's degree
in inlernalional developmenl in
Holland, vorked in a sheller in ßrazil,
and evenluallv found her vav lo
Afghanislan in 2OO4 lo vork for lhe
ßrilish group Afghanaid.
¨Il vas lolallv purposeful and
deliberale,¨ Rilchie savs of her |ournev.
¨Il's been incrediblv inleresling. You're
al lhe forefronl of vhal's going on in
lhe vorld of global polilics. Al lhe
same lime, il's a fascinaling counlrv.¨
Nov a Kabul-based freelance
consullanl, Rilchie's fascinalion vilh
Afghanislan is bridled bv lhe facl lhal
she is nol nearlv as safe as she vas
vhen she hrsl arrived. The escalalion
in hghling belveen lhe NATÒ-backed
governmenl and lhe Taliban insurgenls
means lhal aboul half of lhe counlrv is
nov effeclivelv off-limils lo her.
She savs she vas nol surprised bv
lhe slalislics on increasing allacks
againsl aid vorkers: ¨The problem
vilh aid is lhal il is neulral, bul lodav il
gels confused vilh polilical agenda.¨
In Afghanislan, she adds, aid
vorkers are perceived lo represenl
much more lhan lheir organizalion:
lhev are seen as represenling lhe
Wesl. ¨Iive vears ago, lhere vas no
problem vilh a Weslern face, bul
lodav vou're seen as non-Afghani and
polenliallv parl of an invasion force...
or a spv.¨
Rilchie nov has lo assess vhelher
il is safe lo lravel lo areas for vork or
lo conlracl vilh cerlain local NGÒs.
ßeing an independenl consullanl, she
savs she has lhe luxurv of operaling
lov-prohle and lraveling in unmarked
vehicles, unlike UN colleagues.
¨Working vilh lhe UN, I fell 1OO
limes more nervous, even lhough
vou have lhe greal big cars and bullel
proof vindovs,¨ Rilchie savs. ¨You

POLITICALLY MOTIVATED ATTACKS
Sudan had lhe largesl number of
separale incidenls of violence belveen
2OO6 and 2OO8, vilh more lhan 9O. Mosl
vere allribuled lo common bandilrv.
In places like Afghanislan and Somalia,
hovever, bandils are nov colluding
vilh or have been replaced bv
exlremisl polilical and religious forces
vilh nalional ambilions. In lhe case of
lhe Al Òaeda lerrorisl group, lhe goals
are global.
¨Allacks on aid vorkers in lhe mosl
insecure conlexls vere increasinglv
polilicallv molivaled, reßecling a broad
largeling of lhe aid enlerprise as a
vhole,¨ noles lhe reporl bv lhe Cenler
on Inlernalional Cooperalion and lhe
Òverseas Developmenl Inslilule.
And lhe increasinglv polilical molive
in allacks on humanilarian operalions,
according lo aid vorkers, is in some
cases based on a halred of lhe Wesl.
¨Aid agencies see allacks as a
reßeclion againsl lhem, ralher lhan lheir
operalions, and lhe rules changed afler
|lhe] 9]11 lerrorisl allacks in lhe Uniled
Slales,¨ savs lhe Auslralian aid vorker,
poinling lo Somalia as a prime example.
¨Thev're upsel al lhe Wesl, lhe
policv, lhe 'var on lerror,' lhe perceived
invasion of Islamic counlries,¨ he savs.
¨So vho do lhev have lo largel` Aid
vorkers bare lhe brunl of lhis.¨
According lo lhe reporl, six of
lhe seven vorsl counlries for ma|or
violence againsl aid vorkers belveen
2OO6 and 2OO8 vere Muslim-ma|orilv
nalions: Afghanislan, Chad, Iraq,
Iakislan, Somalia and Sudan. The
sevenlh vas Sri Lanka, vhere a long-
running var belveen lhe Sinhalese
ßuddhisl-ma|orilv governmenl and
Tamil Hindu rebels ended in 2OO9.
HOMEGROWN VIOLENCE
The spike in allacks againsl aid
vorkers is relaled lo lhe perceived
¨clash of civilizalions¨ belveen
Islam and lhe Wesl, bul usuallv has
homegrovn rools, sources sav.
¨These are all counlries vhere lhere's
"The 2008 faIaIlIµ raIe
for lnIernaIlonaI ald
uorkers exceeds IhaI
of UN µeacekeeµlng
Irooµs"
-Center on Internat|ona|
Cooperat|on and the Overseas
Deve|opment Inst|tute
Scoll Richards, a held securilv
ofhcer in Afghanislan for lhe Asian
Developmenl ßank (ADß), savs lhal
vhile ADß slaff mainlains a lover
prohle lhan aid vorkers, lhev are also
sloved dovn bv lhe lack of securilv.
¨We have lrouble gelling oul lo see
our pro|ecls,¨ he savs, vhich include
a railvav being buill lo connecl lhe
Afghanislan÷Uzbekislan border lo lhe
norlhern cilv of Mazar-i-Sharif, and a
ring road in veslern Afghanislan.
¨The biggesl vav il negalivelv affecls
ADß's mission is il increases our cosls.
Nol |usl ADß |ofhces] bul each one
of our pro|ecls requires an addilional
securilv componenl,¨ Richards savs.
¨There are cosls lhal are being incurred
lhal vould olhervise be pul inlo
developmenl.¨
In lhe medium lerm, hovever, aid
and developmenl groups have lillle
oplion bul lo spend more on securilv,
given lhe increasing risks lo lheir
personnel. The valershed incidenl for
lhe UN vas lhe suicide bombing of ils
ßaghdad headquarlers in Augusl 2OO3,
killing lhe Secrelarv General's Special
Lnvov lo Iraq, Sergio Vieira de Mello,
and more lhan 2O olher UN personnel.
The nexl vear, lhe UN Deparlmenl
of Safelv and Securilv venl from
a small office lo a full deparlmenl,
vilh a depulv secrelarv general,
Membrev savs. ¨Thal lo me is a
refleclion of vhere ve are in lhe
vorld.¨
The response has alloved lhe UN
and olher NGÒs lo sland lheir ground
in holspols around lhe vorld, lo be
oul helping people. The complexilv of
lhe lhreals lhev face is enormous and
varies from counlrv lo counlrv.
According lo Membrev, aid
organizalions are seeing lhe need for
more direcl on-lhe-ground conlrol
over securilv, as vell as beller
coordinalion in conßicl zones vilh
lhe UN ¨so lhe NGÒs can focus 9O/
of lheir lime on aid.¨
¨The kev is lo gel oul from behind
lhe barricades and vin hearls and
minds,¨ he savs.
To vil, lhe UN and inlernalional
aid groups vould do vell lo gel on
lhe same level as lhose lhev are lrving
lo help, Rilchie explains. ¨If vou go
around in bullelproof cars vilh police
escorls, il |negalivelv] changes lhe vav
lhal aid vork is carried oul.¨
In lhe debale belveen increased
securilv concerns and lhe desire lo be
closer lo lhe people lhev are lrving lo
help, inlernalional humanilarian aid
vorkers once again hnd lhemselves
vilh no easv ansvers. Q
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 57
are supposed lo be safe.bul vou go
around in lhese big vhile vehicles. You
mighl as vell pul a big red ßag oul lhe
vindov.¨
Aid vorkers, analvsls, and securilv
experls are quick lo poinl oul lhal locallv
hired humanilarian vorkers face far
grealer dangers lhan inlernalional slaff
because lhev permanenllv live in slrife-
lorn areas and do |obs lhal inlernalional
slaff cannol do because of securilv
issues. ßv one eslimale, for everv one
inlernalional aid vorker killed in lhe line
of dulv, eighl nalional slaff are killed.
¨Thev are lhe lrue heroes, vorking
for 2O lo 3O vears. Il's kind of
disgusling. If vou have 12 nalional slaff
killed, no one savs anvlhing. ßul if one
or lvo inlernalional slaff are killed,
lhere's a big uproar,¨ lhe Auslralian aid
vorker savs.
SECURITY BEFORE DEVELOPMENT
Òddlv, in conßicl-lorn zones lhe
securilv cosls are oflen so high lhal
lhev eal inlo monies largeled for
assislance and developmenl pro|ecls.
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UNDER THREAT A man working
for a United States-based Christian
charity is brought to a ñeId hospitaI after
a miIitant attack near the town of Oghi
in the Mansehra district of North West
Frontier Province (NWFP) in Pakistan on
10 March 2010. MiIitants armed with guns
and grenades stormed the ofñces of
the charity organization. The attack was
bIamed on IsIamist rebeIs.
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and spending on imporls lo develop
lheir economies, he savs.
Lasl vear, Ianichpakdi venl even
furlher in a speech al an inlernalional
conference on lhe economic crisis and
ils effecl on developmenl. Calling for
a deeper analvsis of lhe debls of poor
nalions, he savs lhe lime had come
lo address lhe ¨missing link¨ in lhe
hnancial svslem: a mechanism lo deal
vilh sovereign debl insolvencv.
Reforming lhe slruclure of
inlernalional hnance so lhal indebled
sovereign nalions could ¨call a slandslill
and seek a reslrucluring of lheir debl¨
vas essenlial, he savs. A Uniled Nalions
(UN) vorking group has alreadv been
formed lo examine proposals for an
inlernalional debl arbilralion svslem for
insolvenl sovereigns.
All lhose lobbving for reform agree
lhal lhe UN should be al lhe cenler
of anv inlernalional debl arbilralion
svslem, and lhal lhe svslem musl
underscore lhe mulual responsibililv of
lenders and borrovers.
AN ORGANIZED APPROACH
Nongovernmenl organizalions, legal
experls, polilicians, and inlernalional
organizalions have long called for a
global approach lo deal vilh deblor
nalions. Nol onlv does crushing debl
lhrealen lhe survival of developing
nalions, lhe issue affecls inlernalional
hnance inslilulions' abililv lo mainlain
developmenl programs lhal depend on
revolving funds. In lhose funds, debls
musl be repaid lo be circulaled back
inlo granls and lending for ongoing
developmenl programs in lhe vorld's
pooresl nalions.
Wilh lhe global economic crisis,
lhe need for an inlernalionallv
recognized debl arbilralion
mechanism has become even more
urgenl, lo prevenl a furlher spiral
inlo debl and poverlv in scores of
A
s manv as 9O poor counlries
are valloving in debls lhal
lhrealen lo svamp or have
alreadv overlaken lhe enlire
value of lheir economies. Al leasl 4O are a
direcl resull of lhe global economic crisis,
according lo lhe World ßank.
In lhe vake of lhe inlernalional
economic lurmoil vilh ils
disproporlionale impacl on
developmenl, Supachai Ianichpakdi÷
lhe secrelarv-general of lhe Uniled
Nalions Commission on Trade and
Developmenl (UNCTAD)÷urges lhe
inlernalional communilv lo help lhese
vulnerable nalions, parlicularlv lhose
vhose inleresl repavmenls exceed lheir
gross domeslic producl.
Ianichpakdi is calling for a lemporarv
debl moralorium similar lo lhal offered
lo Asian nalions devaslaled bv lhe
2OO4 lsunami. In harmonv vilh groups
represenling developing nalions, he savs
poor counlries had nol caused lhe global
economic melldovn and should nol be
lefl paving a sleep price in lhe form of an
exlernal debl crisis. Inslead of spending
lo service loans, poor nalions need lo
conlinue vilh hscal slimulus packages
Lct's Makc
A Dca!
Internationa| debt campaigners, a|ong with some nations in
Asia and e|sewhere, are ca||ing for an arbitration system to he|p
deve|oping countries sett|e onerous internationa| debts
ßY Lmma-Kale Svmons
organizalion, lilled Hcu ic Cnc||cngc
|||cgiiimcic Dc|i, 1nccru cn! Ccsc Siu!ics,
released in November, developing
counlries slill face crippling debl crises,
despile mullilaleral inilialives such as
lhe Heavilv Indebled Ioor Counlries
Inilialive and lhe Mullilaleral Debl
Relief Inilialive.
The sludv ciles shocking slalislics:
¨In 2OO7 lhe vorld's developing
counlries slill spenl a combined lolal
of approximalelv $1.5 billion everv dav
on exlernal debl servicing.¨
¨Amongsl lheir number are lhe
pooresl counlries in lhe vorld: lhese
lov-income counlries spenl around
$34 million everv dav on exlernal debl
servicing. In lhe currenl global hnancial
crisis, manv of lhe counlries vhich
have benehled from debl relief in
recenl vears nov face subslanlial risk
of nev debl dislress.¨
Inlernalional debl campaign groups
such as lhe Iubilee Debl Campaign,
Lurodad (Luropean Nelvork on
Debl and Developmenl) and Afrodad
(African Nelvork on Debl and
Developmenl) conlinue lo clamor for
debl cancellalion.
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 59
developing counlries seeking monev
lo grov lheir economies.
Currenllv, a varielv of venues
exisls for sellling debl dispules
involving insolvenl sovereign nalions.
These include lhe Iaris Club, lhe
Inlernalional Chamber of Commerce,
lhe Inlernalional Monelarv Iund (IMI),
and lhe World ßank.
ßul lhere are no slandard rules.
Developing nalions complain lhal
credilors have lhe advanlage, leaving
lhem vulnerable lo allack from
¨vullure funds¨ lhal repackage and
sell lhe aslronomical spiraling debl of
bankrupl slales.
According lo a sludv bv lhe
Aklion Iinanzplalz Schveiz (AII), a
Svilzerland-based nongovernmenl
HEAVILY BURDENED Activists in the
Indonesian capitaI of Jakarta caII for the
canceIing of the countryҋs internationaI
debt. Some nations in the region have
debt interest payments higher than their
gross domestic product.
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economic, social, and cullural righls.
He argued lhal ¨an inlernalional
independenl debl arbilralion
mechanism under lhe auspices of a
neulral, non-lending inslilulion vilh
sufhcienl global legilimacv÷ideallv
lhe Uniled Nalions÷can help resolve
unsuslainable debl silualions.¨
ßul Lumina's proposal for a
mechanism based on ¨equilv,
lransparencv, inclusion, and
parlicipalion,¨ lhal ensures lhe
full parlicipalion of all deblors
and credilors, venl bevond slricllv
commercial]legal sovereign debl
arbilralion mechanisms proposed bv
some vho believe lhe svslem could
imilale lhe Uniled Slales' bankruplcv
courl svslem.
Lumina agreed vilh debl relief
campaigners vho argue lhe lribunal
could also ad|udicale cases of
Thev ob|ecl lo loan-based aid for
verv poor counlries and vanl lhe
unconlrolled debl of bankrupl nalions
lo be viped oul. In March 2OO9, for
example, lhe Iubilee Debl Campaign
called on lhe IMI, lhe World ßank, and
olher lending inslilulions lo cancel
debl repavmenls in ßangladesh and lhe
Ihilippines.
°ILLEGITIMATE DEBT"
The link belveen some loan-based aid
and poverlv and human righls abuses
has led lo a relaled campaign lo vipe
oul so-called ¨illegilimale debl.¨
Disagreemenl abounds regarding
lhe legal dehnilion of lhis lerm, bul
campaigners sav such debls are
illegilimale because lhev do nol
benehl lhe populalions of developing
counlries.
¨This mav be because lhe loan vas
conlracled bv a despolic pover vhich
lhen slole lhe cash, used il lo build
up lheir mililarv capabililies or lo
oppress lhe people, or because lhe loan
vas conlracled for ill-conceived and
corrupl developmenl pro|ecls vhich
failed,¨ Lurodad savs in a reporl on
illegilimale debl.
In November, UN Special
Rapporleur Cephas Lumina published
his reporl lo lhe General Assemblv
on lhe effecls of foreign debl on lhe
en|ovmenl of human righls, especiallv
illegilimale debl and debl cancellalion.
Cruciallv, Lumina savs, ¨Il could also
assess a counlrv's abililv lo service ils
debl vilhoul undermining ils capacilv
lo invesl in lhe provision of basic
services lo ils cilizens¨.
Spurred bv Lumina's vork,
UNCTAD launched a 3-vear pro|ecl
focused on ¨promoling responsible
lending and borroving, including
developing crileria for and assessing
lhe legilimacv of sovereign debl¨ al a
November conference in Geneva vilh
DebIs nusI be reµald lf
Iheµ are Io be clrcuIaIed
back lnIo granIs and
Iendlng IhaI suµµorI
conIlnued deteIoµnenI
ln Ihe uorId´s µooresI
naIlons
STRICKEN WITH DEBT Protestors
|n the Ph|||pp|nes ca|| for debt re||ef
for d|saster-str|cken countr|es. Many
deve|op|ng countr|es |n As|a are
strugg||ng to pay externa| debts that
some cons|der "|||eg|t|mate."
since being presenled lo lhe UN
General Assemblv in 2OO8. The idea
vas developed under lhe auspices of
lhe Inlernalional Insolvencv Inslilule,
a leading limiled membership
organizalion of professionals (lavvers,
insolvencv professionals, |udges, and
academics) from around lhe vorld
specializing in inlernalional insolvencv
and reslrucluring mallers.
In an inlerviev, Kargman slresses lhe
need for a more orderlv, efhcienl, and
prediclable reslrucluring of sovereign
debl.
¨We have proposed lhe
eslablishmenl of an independenl
inlernalional arbilralion lribunal÷a
sovereign debl lribunal÷lhal vould
address issues arising in sovereign
debl reslruclurings,¨ Kargman savs.
¨As a slanding bodv, lhe sovereign
debl lribunal vould consisl of
leading professionals vho have
proven experlise in sovereign debl
reslrucluring issues.
¨Sovereigns and lheir credilors
could lurn lo lhe lribunal if lhev faced
issues in sovereign debl negolialions
lhal lhev vere unable lo resolve on
lheir ovn. The sovereign debl lribunal
vould address issues specihed bv
lhe parlies, and such issues could
range from lhe verv basic, such as
verihcalion of credilor claims, lo lhe
more elaborale and complex, such as
debl suslainabililv or mallers relaled lo
reslrucluring plans.
¨The lribunal vould benehl from
being an independenl bodv providing
lhe parlies vilh a neulral forum as vell
as from draving on lhe experlise of a
slanding group of experls in lhe held
vho vould serve as arbilralors for lhe
lribunal.¨
The Kargman÷Iaulus proposal
has some supporl in lhe legal and
academic vorld. Geske Di|kslra,
associale professor in economics
al Lrasmus Universilv, Rollerdam,
has sludied lhe polilical economv
of aid and debl issues. She savs in
an inlerviev lhal ¨arbilralion bv an
independenl lribunal (vilh no monev-
lending capacilv) is a good idea, and
beller lhan cancellalion in lhe currenl
silualion.¨
¨Òur lribunal does nol allempl lo
pre|udge vhal issues lhe parlies vill
bring lo lhe sovereign debl lribunal for
purposes of inlernalional arbilralion,¨
Kargman savs.
¨Thal vill be for lhe parlies÷lhe
lenders and lhe sovereign÷lo decide.
In lurn, anv issues lhal are submilled
lo arbilralion vill be lhe province of
lhe experls vho serve as arbilralors for
lhe sovereign lribunal. Thev vill bring
lheir professional experlise lo bear in
resolving issues lhal are submilled
bv lhe parlies for inlernalional
arbilralion. Òbviouslv, lhere vould
be no predelermined oulcomes÷anv
oulcomes vould be lhe resull of a
neulral arbilralion process.¨ Q
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ofhcials from more lhan 9O developing
counlries.
ORDERLY RESTRUCTURING
While lhere is videspread agreemenl
on lhe need for such a lransparenl
inlernalional svslem, lhe specihcs
differ from one vell-regarded group lo
anolher.
Sleven Kargman is presidenl of
Kargman Associales, a Nev York Cilv-
based hrm specializing in inlernalional
reslrucluring, cross-border insolvencv,
and dislressed debl, vilh a special
focus on emerging markels. He has
leamed up vilh Chrisloph Iaulus,
Irofessor of Lav al Humboldl
Universilv, ßerlin.
Togelher lhev have proposed a
sovereign debl lribunal lo handle
dispules, vhich is frequenllv ciled
in lhe lileralure on debl arbilralion
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HELP WANTED Supacha| Pan|chpakd|-
the Secretary-Genera| of the Un|ted
Nat|ons Comm|ss|on on Trade and
Deve|opment (UNCTADj-has urged the
|nternat|ona| commun|ty to he|p
vu|nerab|e nat|ons repay fore|gn debts,
part|cu|ar|y those whose |nterest
repayments exceed the|r gross domest|c
product.
his degree in engineering, his enlire
familv vas losl in lhe killing helds of
lhe Khmer Rouge. Alone in lhe vorld,
he vorked as a farmer and laler in lhe
cilv's aballoir. He moved up lhe ranks
as a cilv emplovee unlil he reached lhe
level of commerce direclor.
In 1993, Chan vas named lhe head
of Ihnom Ienh's valer aulhorilv. Il
vas an exlremelv unenviable posilion.
The valer lines laid decades earlier bv
lhe Irench had corroded and, as one
reporl pul il, ¨had been augmenled
haphazardlv inlo an indecipherable
maze of conneclions. No blueprinls
had survived lhe Khmer Rouge, nor
had lhe engineers vho underslood
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62 Developmenl Asia April-Iune 2O1O
Thc Mctcr Man
Ek Sonn Chan's work is credited with providing more than a mi||ion Cambodians
with c|ean, affordab|e drinking water
ßY Ilovd Whalev
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lhem. The enlire labvrinlh vas riddled
vilh holes and so porous lhal disease-
laden sevage easilv seeped in.¨
To make mallers vorse, lhe valer
agencv ilself vas in ruins from vears of
var, folloved bv decades of corruplion
and mismanagemenl. Ònlv aboul 2O/
of lhe cilv had running valer, and lhal
vas available for aboul 1O hours a dav al
verv lov pressure. The 5OO emplovees of
lhe aulhorilv vere earning less lhan $2O
a monlh, and legal conneclions lo valer
service in lhe cilv vere unoblainable.
Illegal conneclions vere sold for as much
as $1,OOO each.
Chan's hrsl order of business vas
lo comb lhe ranks of lhe agencv for
ils besl and brighlesl. He formed
lhese vorkers inlo squads lo repair
lhe svslem's mvriad leaks, inslall
lhousands of melers of pipeline, and
close hundreds of illegal conneclions÷
including lhose of lhe rich and
poverful. ßv reforming ils accounling
svslem, lhe agencv gained enough
credibililv lo oblain hnancial assislance
from inlernalional organizalions such
as lhe Asian Developmenl ßank and
lhe World ßank.
Todav, Ihnom Ienh slill has verv
limiled infraslruclure, bul il has one
of lhe besl performing valer svslems
in lhe region. Irom producing 65,OOO
cubic melers of valer in 1993, lhe
aulhorilv nov provides 3OO,OOO
cubic melers per vear, an aslonishing
46O/ increase. When Chan look over,
lhere vere fever lhan 27,OOO legal
conneclions. Todav, lhal number
has increased bv 7OO/ lo 19O,OOO
conneclions.
E
k Sonn Chan and a small leam
of Cambodian valer ulililv
vorkers pulled up oulside
a lavish compound in lhe
capilal cilv of Ihnom Ienh. The ovner
of lhe compound, a poverful local
general, had been paving a lov ßal fee
for unlimiled valer use.
Chan, lhen in his hrsl vear as head
of lhe Ihnom Ienh Waler Supplv
Aulhorilv, had lold cuslomers÷
parlicularlv lhe veallhv÷lhal lhev
vould need lo have melers inslalled in
lheir homes and pav for lhe valer lhev
used. The general's securilv guards
scoffed al Chan's leams on previous
visils lo lhe compound.
When il came lime lo force lhe
silualion, Chan himself venl lo lhe
compound and lold his vorkers lo slarl
digging up lhe pipes oulside lo cul off
lhe valer supplv lo lhe general's home.
As his men began digging, lhe general
emerged, drev a gun, placed il againsl
Chan's head and said: ¨Slop nov!¨
Chan and his men obeved.
ßul Chan did nol quil. ¨The nexl
dav, I hired some armed mililia men,¨
he savs. ¨Lighl of us venl lo lhe house
and disconnecled his valer supplv. The
general lived vilhoul valer for a fev
davs. Lvenluallv, he came lo see me in
mv ofhce, and he alloved us lo pul lhe
meler in.¨
The harroving encounler vas one
of dozens lhal Lk Sonn Chan has
experienced as lhe head of Ihnom
Ienh's public valer provider since
1993. Il vas nol lhe hrsl lime he had
faced danger and difhcullv in his life.
In lhe 197Os, nol long afler earning
P80F|L£$ |h 0£V£L0PN£hT
"The generaI Ilted
ulIhouI uaIer for a
feu daµs. LtenIuaIIµ.
he cane Io see ne ln nµ
offlce. and he aIIoued
us Io µuI Ihe neIer ln"
-Ek Sonn Chan, head of the Phnom
Penh Water Supp|y Author|ty
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 63
for Governmenl Service. Recipienls
¨address issues of human developmenl
in Asia vilh courage and crealivilv¨ and
¨have made conlribulions vhich have
lransformed lheir socielies for lhe beller,¨
according lo lhe foundalion's vebsile.
Chan ¨raised prices, resulling in
slrong revenues and an enviable
repulalion for paving lhe aulhorilv's
debls ahead of schedule,¨ lhe avard
slales. ¨He made cheap valer available
lo lhe cilv's pooresl neighborhoods.
Nev and refurbished valer-lrealmenl
planls ensured lhal lhis valer mel
World Heallh Òrganizalion valer-
safelv slandards. Al lhe same lime,
he professionalized lhe aulhorilv's
vorkforce, building ils lechnical
capacilv and inslilling in ils emplovees
a vork elhic of discipline, compelence,
and leamvork.
Mosl signihcanllv, he is crediled
vilh ¨bringing safe drinking valer lo a
million people in Cambodia's
capilal cilv.¨ ■
FIXING LEAKS Under Ek Sonn Chan,
the Phnom Penh Water SuppIy Authority
ñxed the cityҋs water system Ieaks,
instaIIed thousands of meters, and
cIosed hundreds of iIIegaI connections-
incIuding those of the rich and powerfuI.
WATER CARTING SERVICE A girI
struggIes to puII a water cart as she goes
down a street in Phnom Penh. CIean
water in Cambodiaҋs capitaI was often
scarce before the Phnom Penh Water
SuppIy Authority reformed the system.
The aulhorilv boasls a colleclion
rale of 99.9/, vilh 1OO/ of cuslomers
using melers, compared vilh 12/ in
1993. This videspread use of melering
and efhcienl colleclions alloved lhe
aulhorilv lo offer cheap, clean valer
and lover-cosl pavmenl plans in lhe
cilv's pooresl neighborhoods.
Aboul 18,OOO verv poor families
in lhe cilv have been given valer
conneclions lhrough subsidies or verv
manageable pavmenl plans, savs Chan.
And lhe davs of paving bribes in order
lo gel valer are over. The aulhorilv
guaranlees lhal valer vill be connecled
lo anv home in Ihnom Ienh vilhin 3
davs of receipl of lhe applicalion vilh
no exlra charges.
In 2OO6, lhe Ramon Magsavsav
Ioundalion, named for lhe Ihilippine
presidenl vho died in a plane crash in
1957, gave Chan ils presligious Avard
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64 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O
SavIng thc Wnr!d,
Onc VacatInn at a TImc
KEEP turns we||-intentioned tourists into a vo|unteer workforce
to he|p manage Hima|ayan tourism and train Nepa|ese service providers
ßY Margo Ifeiff
8£00hhA|$Ah0£
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husband, a mechanical engineer and
pro|ecl manager al Tovola, vas offered
a 12-monlh sabbalical in Seplember
2OO9 vhen lhe economic dovnlurn
affecled lhe hrm. The couple |umped
al lhe opporlunilv for a career break.
Nov in lheir earlv 3Os, lhev had
been vorking for a decade since
college and loving vilh lhe idea of
going abroad lo do developmenl
vork. ¨We vanled lo share our
professional experience and
experlise vilh olhers and give
somelhing back,¨ savs Rhiannon,
¨and lo live somevhere complelelv
differenl long enough lo gel under
lhe skin of lhe place.¨
Thev found vhal lhev vere
looking for vhen a colleague
poinled lhem lo KLLI in London.
Il vas a perfecl hl. ¨Wilh mv
markeling skills and Iames's pro|ecl
managemenl experience, ve fell ve
could help make KLLI beller,¨ she
savs. Though lhev had never been
lo Nepal or vorked abroad before,
lhev boughl airline lickels and
headed lo Kalhmandu in December
for a 5-monlh slinl.
A LASTING TRIBUTE
KLLI slarled in 1991 afler lvo
female ßrilish climbers allempled lhe
summil of Im|a Tse (Island Ieak) lo
drav allenlion lo lhe environmenlal
problems in Nepal's Khumbu region.
Òne of lhe climbers, Tracev Tavlor
Young, died in a fall. As a lribule,
lhe Tracev Tavlor Young Mounlain
Trusl vas eslablished in lhe UK bv
her familv and colleagues. The monev
vould creale informalion cenlers in
Nepal lo educale some of lhe 45O,OOO
R
hiannon ßullin spends
her davs redesigning
a vebsile, producing
press releases, and
direcling volunleers lovard
lrail clean-up pro|ecls or Lnglish
language classes. She is also
drafling a nev markeling plan
and vriling proposals for funding.
Somelimes she even lends a hand
making chapallis for lunch al lhe
Green Cafó.
ßul Rhiannon isn'l vorking: she's
on vacalion.
Ralher lhan lanning on a
beach or cruising lhe high seas,
she and her husband Iames are
volunleering vilh lhe Kalhmandu
Lnvironmenlal Lducalion
Iro|ecl (KLLI). A nonprohl,
nongovernmenl organizalion
(NGÒ), KLLI has lvo missions:
providing lhe hundreds of
lhousands of inlernalional
lravellers and lrekkers vho come lo
lhe Himalavas everv vear vilh safelv
informalion and an insighl inlo lhe
fragile environmenl and cullure of
Nepal, and educaling Nepalese lourism
professionals lo prolecl lheir counlrv's
ecological and cullural richness
lhrough posilive-impacl lourism.
Wilh a background in public
relalions and markeling in lhe
Uniled Kingdom (UK), Rhiannon
vas a communicalions manager vilh
Nalional Museums Liverpool. Her
DOORWAY TO A RICH HERITAGE
A tourist waIks through an ornate
doorway at the Durbar Square District
of Kathmandu. Some visitors to NepaI
choose to experience the countryҋs rich
cuIture by combining voIunteer work
with sightseeing.
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 65
lourisl area helps visilors vilh lravel
and mounlain safelv informalion and
educales lhem aboul eco-friendlv
¨minimum impacl¨ lrekking. Thev
urge visilors lo palronize responsible
lrekking agencies and lodge ovners
and lo supporl organizalions vilh
long-lerm inveslmenls in Nepal, and
varn lhem againsl handing oul rupees
or sveels lo begging children. Dailv
presenlalions and leclures provide
background on evervlhing from lhe
causes of deforeslalion÷a ma|or
issue in Nepal÷lo lhe basic eliquelle
of Nepalese socielv. There is even a
hllered valer rehll slalion lo cul dovn
on vasle from plaslic bollles.
The second prong of KLLI's mission
lourisls vho visil lhe Himalavan
kingdom each vear, manv poorlv
informed aboul Nepalese cullure
and lhe fragililv of lhe mounlain
environmenl. The KLLI Travellers'
Informalion Cenlre (TIC) opened in
Kalhmandu in 1992.
The cenler nov houses a small
reference librarv, an adminislralive
area, lhe Lco-Shop, and lhe Green Cafó.
KLLI has grovn inlo one of Nepal's
leading ecolourism NGÒs, vorking
closelv vilh lhe Nepal Tourism ßoard
and WWI, vilh vhom KLLI produced
a guidebook, Responsible Trekking in
lhe Himalavas.
A handful of experls al lhe
Kalhmandu TIC in lhe busv Thamel
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KHUMBU TREK The Kathmandu
EnvironmentaI Education Project
(KEEP) started in 1991 when two British
cIimbers attempted to reach the Imja Tse
summit in order to draw attention to the
environmentaI probIems of the Khumbu
region. The photo shows the suspension
bridge over the river Dudh Kosi in
Khumbu, NepaI.
Vo|unteer at KEEP
F
or a short, "responsible"
holiday in Nepal, volunteering
for a few days at a KEEP
Community Development
Program while taking in touring
and trekking, contact one of their
organizing partners. Among them:
Crooked Trails <www.crookedtrails.
com>, Raw Travel <rawtravel.
com>, Intrepid Travel <www.
intrepidtravel.com>, and The
Responsible Travellers <www.
theresponsibletravellers.com>.
For a longer, more intensive
volunteer experience-most
volunteers stay 2 to 3 months-you
must be fuent in written and spoken
English. Be prepared to cover
travelling expenses to Nepal and
room and board, although KEEP
can help organize accommodation
at special rates. Volunteers must
independently arrange for visas,
vaccinations, insurance, and other
international travel concerns.
Volunteers are charged $50 to
cover the cost of the orientation
program, identifcation cards, general
administration, and annual KEEP
membership.
KEEP is seeking volunteers who
can run or support training in the
following courses:
■ English language
■ German language
■ Teacher training
■ First Aid
■ Leadership
■ Conservation / ecotourism/
waste management /
heritage preservation
■ Hospitality
They also welcome volunteers with
the following skills or experience:
■ Writing proposals and reports
■ Offce and/or computer work
■ Tourism marketing and
networking
■ Accounting
KEEP can also arrange for
volunteers to work with partner
organizations, including local
orphanages and other NGOs.
For further information contact:
voIunteer@info.com.np
www.keepnepaI.org
TeI: +977 1 421 6775/6
66 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O
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"We deµend greaIIµ
on toIunIeers. and
ln recenI µears ue
hate seen lncreaslng
nunbers of tlslIors
uho uanI Io heIµ as
ueII as slnµIµ tlslI as
IourlsIs"
- KEEP D|rector D.B. Gurung
is lo provide lraining lo hundreds of
Nepalese guides, porlers, park rangers,
and lodge ovners lhal serve lhe
lourisls. Nepal's vorkforce of roughlv
1O million severelv lacks skilled labor,
and suffers from high unemplovmenl
and a lov lileracv rale. Lven lhough
lourism is a ma|or source of revenue,
grovlh in lhe hospilalilv induslrv
vas slißed bv lhe decade-long conßicl
belveen governmenl forces and
Maoisls lhal vas resolved in 2OO6.
A HEFTY TO-DO LIST
To help hll lhe counlrv's educalion
gap, KLLI offers dozens of inlensive
courses in Kalhmandu and small
rural communilies÷basic and
inlermediale Lnglish, hrsl aid,
mounlaineering and rock climbing,
safelv-orienled eco-lrekking, and
lodge managemenl. Special vorkshops
inslrucl in leadership, sanilalion, and
ecolourism. KLLI is also involved in
cleaning up herilage siles: fundraising
for pro|ecls, such as building rural
schools: and supporling local NGÒs
in selling up informalion cenlers al
lrekking lrailheads. The cenler also
helps sludenls conducl environmenlal,
foreslrv, and lourism research in Nepal.
Thal is a heflv lo-do lisl for an
organizalion vilh an adminislralive
slaff of onlv eighl. ¨We depend greallv
on volunleers,¨ savs KLLI Direclor
D.ß. Gurung. ¨And in recenl vears
ve have seen increasing numbers of
visilors vho vanl lo help as vell as
simplv visil as lourisls.¨ In lhe mid-
199Os, KLLI launched ils Communilv
Developmenl Irogram in parlnership
vilh World Challenge (UK) as a vav
lo maximize lourism's posilive effecl
on rural communilies. Visilors mav
bed dovn in homes vilh local families,
and lend a hand vilh small-scale
pro|ecls, such as school renovalions,
drinking valer and loilel building
enlerprises, or vork in orphanages.
Several lour companies vorldvide
offer ¨volunlourism¨ packages vilh
KLLI lhal include a fev davs of
volunleer vork mixed vilh lrekking
and sighlseeing.
While KLLI velcomes anvone for
anv lenglh of lime, lhe organizalion
parlicularlv seeks volunleers vilh
praclical vork experience or a
professional background÷especiallv
lhose vilh experience in developing
vvv.developmenl.asia April-Iune 2O1O Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa 67
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counlries÷villing lo commil lo
several veeks or more in Nepal.
¨These volunleers are lhe backbone
of KLLI's success,¨ savs Gurung.
Volunleers assisl slaff vilh lraining
and office managemenl. ¨Thev help
us keep up lhe qualilv of our courses
lhal are highlv regarded bv lrekking
companies, holeliers, and lour
operalors.¨
Il is nol necessarv, hovever, lo be
an experl in a parlicular held: ßuencv
in spoken and vrillen Lnglish is one
of lhe fev basic requiremenls, along
vilh a good dose of enlhusiasm. Thal
is exacllv vhal Kale MacLennan of
Canberra, Auslralia broughl vhen
she arrived in Nepal in December
2OO8. She had learned of KLLI from
slaunch supporler, Melbourne-
based Lonelv Ilanel, vhich even
produces a guidebook lo inlernalional
volunleering. A universilv sludenl,
MacLennan laughl KLLI's monlh-long
Winler Lnglish Language Course in
Kalhmandu, lhen a 2-veek course in
lhe remole village of Galling.
Her sludenls vere a mix of lourism
professionals and college sludenls.
She valched lhem nol onlv increase
lheir conhdence speaking Lnglish, bul
also gain a broader underslanding of
lhe vorld bevond lheir village. ¨Thev
vere so eager for anv learning lhev
could gel,¨ she savs. ¨And living vilh
a local familv vas a life-changing
experience.¨ She vas so inspired lhal
she relurned lo Nepal in Iebruarv
2O1O lo leach again. ¨And I'll be going
back,¨ she savs.
While Rhiannon ßullin exercises
her adminislralive mulli-lasking skills
in KLLI's Kalhmandu headquarlers,
her husband Iames vorks vilh lhe
leam on proposal vriling and ofhce
managemenl lraining. He also vorks
GUIDE TRAINING One aspect of
KEEPҋs mission is to provide training to
hundreds of NepaIese guides, porters,
nationaI park rangers, and Iodge owners
working in the tourist service industry.
on lhe logislics of a program lo help
locals collecl and dispose of vasle
lefl in lhe mounlains bv lrekkers. The
couple spends evenings in meelings
and socializing vilh olher NGÒ
vorkers lo furlher KLLI's cause.
¨Òur experience and skills are
greallv apprecialed in a counlrv lhal is
lrving ils besl lo hnd ils feel afler vears
of polilical inslabililv,¨ savs Rhiannon.
¨You mav feel lhal il's impossible lo
make a difference in lhe vorld, bul I'd
advise anvone lo lake lhe leap. Il vill
expand vour ovn horizons.¨ ■
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68 Dcvc!nµmcnt AsIa April-Iune 2O1O vvv.developmenl.asia
0h Th£ 8£0080
"EducatInn÷and thc !ack nI
cducatInn÷Is an unIn!dIng crIsIs.
It Is an cmcrgcncv. Wc'vc sccn hnw
ccnnnmIcs havc bccn ab!c tn mnvc
mnuntaIns nI mnncv tn shnrc uµ thcIr
ccnnnmIcs, and nn!v mnvc mn!chI!!s
Inr cducatInn. That nccds tn changc."
Queen Rania A| Abdu||ah of Jordan at the Wor|d Economic
Forum in Davos-K|osters, Switzer|and in January
"Thcrc can bc
nn Innd sccurItv
wIthnut c!Imatc
sccurItv."
United Nations Secretary-Genera| Ban Ki Moon,
addressing wor|d |eaders on food security
"Wc'rc In
a sItuatInn
whcrc
wc'rc
gnIng Irnm a mndc!
whcrc cvcrvthIng
vnu saw was truc
and was hIgh!v
mctcrcd÷that Is,
hIgh!v cnntrn!!cd÷
tn an cxµ!nsInn nI
InInrmatInn whcrc
nnt cvcrvthIng vnu
scc Is truc. And It's
vcrv dIIIIcu!t Inr
humans tn snrt nut
what's truc and
what's Ia!sc."
Eric Schmidt, chairman and CEO of
Goog|e, comments in an interview with
CNN on the credibi|ity of information found
on the internet
"Hungcr Is thc mnst cruc! and cnncrctc
sIgn nI µnvcrtv. Oµu!cncc and wastc arc
nn !nngcr acccµtab!c whcn thc tragcdv
nI hungcr Is assumIng cvcr grcatcr
µrnµnrtInns."
Pope Benedict XVI in a speech at the Wor|d Summit on Food
Security 2009 in Rome
"Nn nnc wI!! cscaµc thc cnnscqucnccs
nI c!Imatc changc. Wca!th wI!! bc nn
barrIcr nnr wI!! tcchnn!ngv bc thc
µanacca, cvcn II wc can aIInrd It."
Nobe| peace |aureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa and former Prime Minister
of Ire|and Mary Robinson in an opinion piece pub|ished in the :V\[O*OPUH4VYUPUN7VZ[and
Ma|aysia's5L^:[YHP[Z;PTLZ before the Copenhagen summit on c|imate change in December
1 billion people potentially affected by climate change
75 percent of the world’s illiterates
1.8 billion people living on less than $2 a day
5HGXFHSRYHUW\LQ$VLDDQGWKH3DFLÀF
by reducing these numbers
www.adb.org/poverty
FIGHTING POVERTY IN ASIA AND THE PACIFIC
In Financial Risk Management,
Experience Counts For Everything.
In Asia Pacific, We’ve Got Plenty Of It.
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