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6GEO3 Unit 3 Contested Planet Topic 5: Bridging the Development Gap - page 22 / 24

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Some of the least developed countries face stark development choices

In order to qualify for debt relief under the HIPC scheme they must undertake ‘structural adjustment policies’ (SAPs)

Critics argue that World Bank and IMF sponsored SAPs and HIPC are simply another way of OECD countries controlling the least developed world

Others say Washington Consensus reforms open countries and workers up to exploitation by TNCs

The counter argument is “Look at China”

The Washington Consensus

This is a set of economic reforms which the WB and IMF advise developing nations to undertake as part of a SAP to qualify for debt relief, and to help development. The reforms include:

Cutting public spending

Currency devaluation in some cases

Removal of import / export barriers

Opening up to FDI

Removing subsidies

Privatisation and deregulation

The aim of these policies is to help a country enter the global economy and benefit trade.

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