Economist takes exception to conflict in developing countries.
KARACHI -- Senior economist and Director Research, Institute of Business Management (IoBM), Dr Shahida Wizarat has taken strong exception to widespread and endemic conflict and militarization in the developing countries.
Talking to reporter here on Friday, she said the situation has emerged to be one of the biggest challenges faced by the third world already reeling under the pressure of globalization.
Mentioning that countries across Asia, Africa, Middle East were engaged in sectarian, ethnic and ideological conflicts, she said. A common feature of these conflicts was that populations were polarized systematically into ethnic, sectarian and ideological groups, she added.
Dr Wizarat, quoting her own study, said one percent increase in world conflict increases GDP of developed countries by 7.7 percent.
'Unfortunately the GDP in developing countries declines by 3.8 percent,' said the former Director of Applied Economics Research Centre (AERC), University of Karachi, and currently dean of College of Economics and Social Development (CESD).
The researcher said the developed countries were thus the major beneficiaries of conflicts, enveloping the world today on account of increase in the output of the industrial military complex.
'It further enables them to take control of natural resources from Third World countries that do not have the means to protect these,' said Dr Shahida Wizarat.
The situation is also closely linked to globalization, she said mentioning that a vast majority of the economists in the world are not only contesting globalization but also consider it as a process of vast, systematic, institutionalized and legitimized plunder of the Third World countries.
'Globalization has emerged into a condition in which productive capacity of developing countries, their land, labour, forests, and fisheries now produce mostly for the benefit of a relatively few rich people elsewhere,' she said.
Dr. Wizarat said there was overwhelming evidence for a positive correlation between globalization, internationalization and unemployment leading to conflict and militarization in the third world.
'Their studies show that global unemployment has increased the rate of global inequality and the gap between the 'global rich' and the 'global poor' continues to grow,' said Dr. Wizarat.
She registered with deep concern that Transnational Corporations (TNCs) were virtually dictating Third World development, with the latter unable to direct foreign investment towards the needs of their citizens and prevent actions that hurt their national interests.
In reply to a question, she particularly referred to genetically modified (GM) food issue mentioning that developed countries exporting GM food to developing countries have very strict laws about the consumption of these food products in their own countries.
'In most of these countries their consumption is strictly forbidden yet they are exporting the same to third world with absolute impunity,' said the seasoned economist.