South Commission: The global south could’ve had its own economic club

Source: The post is based on the article “The global south could’ve had its own economic club” published in the Livemint on 16th November 2022.

What is the News?

At the time India has stepped into the presidency of the G20, India can bring together the economies of the southern hemisphere (excluding those of rich Australia and New Zealand) into an economic club as advised by the South Commission.

About South Commission’s attempt to create a southern economic club

A South Commission was set up in 1987 and worked from 1987 to 1990. The commission was chaired by former president of Tanzania Julius Nyerere. The commission’s member secretary and lead writer was India’s former prime minister Manmohan Singh. The commission has 26 members.

Based on: The work of the Brandt Commission led to the development of the European Union. In many ways, the South Commission hoped to create a similar framework, with an institutional set-up for former colonies to strengthen south-south trade and take a collective bargaining approach in world affairs.

Function: The commission visited countries of the south and met their leaders and people to get a pulse of how to escape the mesh of colonization, learn from local experiences, gain strength from ideas and offer a united front.

Note: At the time Portuguese colonizers liberated Mozambique, there was only one educated person in the whole country. Further, They also cut pipelines under buildings, leaving infrastructure unusable.

What were the recommendations of the South Commission?

The report was published as a book, Challenge to the South, in 1990.

The commission published a report with ideas, prescriptions for uniting and strengthening the countries now called the Global South. The commission also recommended creating its own economic philosophy and strategies for the south to overcome poverty and other disabilities.

On mutual trade: The commission recommended procuring among themselves. For instance, if a truck from Germany was cheaper than one from Mahindra in India, African countries should buy Mahindra vehicles, as former colonies had to encourage each other’s efforts.

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