Toward a New International Economic Order: Washington Consensus, Main Street Alternative

Toward a New International Economic Order: Washington Consensus, Main Street Alternative

The financial crisis that erupted in east Asia in mid 1997 has thrust millions of workers back into dire poverty and shattered an entire decade of economic development in the region. The crisis has also flared and spread within the global economy. Russia has undergone a financial collapse. South Africa, which is Africa’s largest economy, has had to raise interest rates to defend its currency and faces a significant economic slow down. Now, the process of financial contagion has added Brazil to the ranks of crisis countries, and most economists are predicting a severe Latin American economic downturn in 1999. In light of Brazil’s troubles, Newsweek recently went so far as to compare the winter recovery in world financial markets as akin to the “phony war” of 1940, a period when people falsely reassured themselves that calamity would be avoided.

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