1887

n Tydskrif vir Geesteswetenskappe - 'n Kritiese beskouing van die Accra-verklaring

Volume 47, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0041-4751

Abstract

Die artikel oorweeg sekere ekonomiese implikasies van die Accra-verklaring van die Wêreldbond van Gereformeerde Kerke (World Alliance of Reformed Churches, wat algemeen as die WARC afgekort word) [Kyk addendum]. Die Wêreldbond, wie se ledetal uit 218 gereformeerde kerkgenootskappe in 107 lande bestaan, het die Verklaring tydens sy jaarlikse konferensie in Accra in September 2004 aanvaar. Die Wêreldbond beskou die Verklaring as 'n beroep op ryk, ontwikkelde lande, hoofsaaklik in die Noordelike halfrond, om die voordele van ekonomiese groei en ontwikkeling meer eweredig met arm inwoners van arm lande te deel. Uit 'n ekonomiese perspektief plaas die Verklaring die blaam vir voortgesette armoede op globalisering en 'n neoliberale wêreldorde, bestaande uit die Verenigde State en sy bondgenote, en instellings soos die Internasionale Monetêre Fonds, die Wêreldbank en die Wêreldhandelsorganisasie. Hierdie artikel oorweeg die Verklaring se menings oor globalisasie; die Verenigde State en internasionale organisasies; en die neoliberale wêreldorde. Die voordele van globalisasie is inderdaad nie eweredig tussen ryk en arm lande verdeel nie. Voorts het die Verenigde State en internasionale organisasies foute gemaak wat tot voortgesette armoede gelei het, eerder as om tot die bekamping daarvan by te dra. Die Verklaring is egter ongebalanseer in soverre dit nie ook onderdrukkende regerings en diktatorskappe in dieselfde terme as die neoliberale wêreldorde verwerp nie. Die gevolgtrekking is dat die verantwoordelikheid vir armoedebekamping, hoewel nie eweredig nie, deur ryk en arm lande gedeel moet word, eerder as om dit uitsluitlik as 'n uitdaging voor die deur van ryk lande te lê.


This paper considers certain economic implications of the Covenanting for Justice in the Economy and the Earth of the World Alliance of Reformed Churches (WARC) [See appendix]. The WARC, an alliance of 218 reformed churches from 107 countries, adopted the declaration during its conference in Accra in September 2004. The WARC regards the declaration as a call on the rich, developed world to share the fruits of economic progress more equally with poor people in poor countries. Decisions and declarations of the WARC are not binding on its member churches, but members are encouraged to support such initiatives. As the WARC has six members in South Africa, the declaration will also become the subject of local debate in coming months.
In terms of an economic perspective, the declaration blames globalisation and a neo-liberal world order, comprising the United States and its allies, and institutions such as the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the World Trade Organisation, for continued underdevelopment and poverty. This paper considers the views of the declaration on globalisation; the United States and international organisations; and the neo-liberal world order from an economic perspective. The analysis leaves no doubt that the benefits of globalisation are indeed not spread evenly between rich and poor countries. This difference between rich countries in the north and poor countries in the south has on occasion been described as a golden curtain of divide between the rich and the poor. The United States and international organisations have made mistakes that perpetuated poverty, rather than to alleviate it. Developed countries also produce externalities such as pollution that contributes to global warming with concomitant negative consequences for poor countries. However, the declaration is not balanced in as much as it does not reject dictatorships and unrepresentative governments in poor countries in the same terms as the neo-liberal world order. Unrepresentative governments are often instrumental in perpetuating poverty and underdevelopment by not permitting economic freedom, fostering property rights or supporting the rule of law.
As an alternative to current development problems and the failure of neo-liberal developmental prescriptions, the Barcelona Consensus on economic development and poverty alleviation was formulated in 2004. This consensus achieves a more balanced approach in its recommended solutions for overcoming poverty problems in developing countries than the declaration of the WARC.
The conclusion is that the responsibilities for overcoming development problems and poverty should be shared, albeit not equally, in terms of adjustments required by rich and poor countries, rather than to be regarded as a challenge facing only rich countries. Theology and ethics, rather than only economic theory, should determine the principles in terms of which economic laws are used to eradicate poverty. In this way the melting of the golden curtain will be enhanced.

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/content/akgees/47/2/EJC20027
2007-06-01
2019-08-19

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