Commentary

A Better Global Framework to End AIDS

STOCKHOLM, GENEVA – This week, we celebrate the tremendous progress that has been made in the struggle against HIV and AIDS. In many countries with strong health systems, HIV is no longer a death sentence, but a chronic condition. And Africa has reached a critical milestone: each year, there are now more Africans starting HIV treatment than being infected.

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Trump, the Dragon, and the Minotaur

ATHENS – If Donald Trump understands anything, it is the value of bankruptcy and financial recycling. He knows all about success via strategic defaults, followed by massive debt write-offs and the creation of assets from liabilities. But does he grasp the profound difference between a developer’s debt and the debt of a large economy? And does he understand that China’s private debt bubble is a powder keg under the global economy? Much hinges on whether he does.

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Training for Gender Equality

MUSCAT – For centuries, women around the world have struggled for even the most basic rights. The fight for equality has been an uphill climb – one that is far from over. This is certainly the case in the Middle East, where the challenges women face are typically rooted in social norms, cultural systems, and religious doctrine, and can be enshrined in law.

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The End of AIDS

NEW YORK – The AIDS pandemic claimed around 36 million lives between 1981 and 2016, and a similar number around the world currently live with the HIV virus. Some 1.2 million people died of AIDS last year, and another 1.8 million were infected. Those statistics are daunting, but the startling news is that the goal of an “AIDS-Free Generation” is realistically within reach. The required policy steps should be agreed in the early days of US President-elect Donald Trump’s administration.

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The Politics of Job Polarization

WASHINGTON, DC – A core problem in the United States today – reflected in Donald Trump’s victory in the presidential election earlier this month – is that too many Americans feel helpless and insecure in the face of the job polarization that has resulted from globalization and new technology. While highly educated people at the top of the income distribution are doing better than ever, people with only a high school education face declining incomes, living standards, and prospects for themselves and their children. The middle class is being torn apart.

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Three Ways to Improve Child Health

SEATTLE – Over the last 15 years, the international community has made great strides in improving child health. But, with millions of children under the age of five dying each year from preventable and treatable diseases like diarrhea and pneumonia, the job is far from finished.

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Antibiotics That Work

MEXICO CITY – From the discovery of penicillin in 1928 to the introduction of the last of the main groups of antibiotics in the 1960s, humanity’s capacity to fight pathogenic bacteria has been transformative. But, over time, the number of antibiotics to which bacteria are susceptible has been dwindling, and some pathogens have become resistant to most or all existing drugs. As a result, once-treatable infections are becoming deadly again.

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The Many Faces of Malnutrition

ABUJA – If you happen to be sitting with two other people right now, chances are one of you is malnourished. And you might not even know it. Yes, that’s right: one in three people worldwide suffer from malnutrition, and it does not always look the way one might expect.

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Mother Nature vs. Climate Change

MARRAKESH – Wetlands, forests, and oceans absorb and store carbon, which makes them a vital asset for countries pursuing the Paris climate agreement’s targets for reducing CO2 emissions. So how can we use them most effectively?

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What Is the Pound Telling Us?

LONDON – I know from my 32 years in finance that the weird world of foreign-exchange markets can sometimes defy comprehension, and that trying to estimate sterling’s baseline, equilibrium value can be an exercise in futility.

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