An undercurrent of the world’s

An undercurrent of the world’s major problems is the conflict ofinterest between developed and developing nations, such as ineconomic development and the politics of the global environment.Give specific examples of how this conflict is embodied in worldpolitics and economics. How is this tension likely to shape thefuture of the world?


1. The world economy has been witnessing a conflict of interestfor a very long period of time, the examples of how such conflictsare embedded in world politics and economic relations may includethe following-

A. The globalisation wave of the twentieth century benefited thedeveloped western world more than developing countries. This hasmade the developing countries complain that they have been a netloser in the globalisation. Moreover, in recent past when thedeveloping countries such as China and India started gaining fromthe globalization, the western world started retreating toprotectionism. This has created a conflict of interest in theglobal order.

B. The western European countries and USA favoured rule basedtrading regime and multilateral institutions in the post worldwar-II era, however, developing countries complain that themultilateral institutions such as IMF have not been fair to themdue to unequal say in decision making. They also complain thatdeveloped countries impede the functioning of institutions such asWTO which has equal voting power for each member. Thus, thefunctioning of the multilateral institutions such as WTO and IMFhave been affected by divergent interests.

C. Technology and capital are the foundations of the developedwestern world, the developing countries have been insisting ontransfer of technology to advance their industrial development,however, the developed world has not shown much interest in thisarea, in turn it has become an area where there is a conflict ofinterest.

D. Natural Resources such as hydrocarbons and natural gas havebeen found in various countries of south America and Middle East,the developed countries have desired the prices of fossil fuels andnatural gas to be low to ease mobility in their countries. On theother hand, developing states of South America and Middle East havetried to maximize prices through formation of cartels. This hasresulted in a conflict of interest.

E. Since 1980s there has been a global discussion on findingsolutions to the problem of global warming and associatedchallenges to ecosystems. The developed world have been advocatingfor a common and equal responsibility. However, the developingcountries argue that it is a common responsibility but withdifferentiated liabilities. Their main reasoning is that developedcountries have polluted the environment through establishingindustries since the mid of the eighteenth century and hence theyshould bear more responsibility and provide finance to them tomitigate the effects of global warming. This has apparently causeda conflict of interest.

2. These tensions are inter alia, likely to result in thefollowing outcomes-

A. Increasing trade wars and protectionism such as the one goingon between USA and China.

B. Diminishing role of the multilateral institutions such as WTOand IMF.

C. Increased fight for protection of intellectual propertyrights and which is likely to affect diffusion of technology.

D. Deterioration of natural environment due to increased globalwarming.

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