With the release of its annual Alternative Federal Budget, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) urges the federal government to table a detailed budget that restores Canadians’ trust in the economy, public institutions, and democracy.

The proposal launched by the CCPA, one of the national focal points of Social Watch in the North American country, addresses the concerns of mainstream Canada by putting forward a public investment plan that promotes a better quality of life for all Canadians, not just an elite few.

Kinda Muhamadieh

Tunisian and Egyptian civil society organizations “are not just looking at political reform, but also looking at economic reform, debt cancellation, and the relationship with the European Union (EU) and overall transition process,” according to Kinda Muhamadieh, programme manager at the Arab NGO Network for Development (ANND).

Leonor Briones

The impact of typhoons, earthquakes, climate change and other external factors make it difficult for the Philippines to reach its economic growth targets of 5 percent to 6 percent this year and 6 percent to 7 percent next year, warned Social Watch Philippines this week.

Photo: MME

The Mediterranean Migration Network (MMN) was officially launched during a two-day kick-off meeting in Nicosia, on March 1-2. The meeting was organized by the MMN coordinator, the research and development centre CARDET, focal point of Social Watch in Cyprus.

Atiur Rahman (Social Watch),
Manzoor Ahmed (Education Watch),
Rasheda K Choudhury (Peoples'
Forum on MDG), and Arifur Rahman
(Manusher Jonno).
(Photo: The Daily Star)

The centralization in Dhaka, the capital city of Bangladesh, is responsible for the unsustainable development of that South Asian country, according to the Social Watch Report 2012. The historical absence of long-term planning and overpopulation are the main cause of environmental degradation and resource depletion, said Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, executive director of Coastal Association for Social Transformation (COAST Trust) while launching the study.

The report, based on 670 reports of 66 nations, said in its Bangladesh part that centralisation has accentuated geographical imbalance in income in the country.

President Lee Myung-bak.
(Photo: Marco Castro/United Nations)

The Citizen’s Coalition for Economic Justice (CCEJ), focal point of Social Watch in the Republic of Korea, gave failing grades on the President Lee Myung-bak's performance during its time in power. The organization concluded that only 39.48% of Lee's 100 major governance tasks were executed. The administration scored a D+ grade for satisfaction with the results of those, reported journalist Jung Hwang-bong for The Hankyoreh daily newspaper.

Corporate income tax rate in
Canada: 1926-2010.
(Source: The Globe and Mail)

“In Canada, federal taxes on profits had fallen to 16.6 per cent by fiscal 2010-11 after briefly dipping to 13.2 per cent in 2008, a level not seen since the Great Depression,” wile corporate profits “have rebounded since the 2008-9 crisis, nearing the previous high water mark,” wrote Armine Yalnizyan, senior economist at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA), one of the focal points of Social Watch in the North American country.

Mongolia narrowed the gap putting legislation into force
■ Brazil reached a low score in political empowerment, although the president is a woman
■ Social Watch Italy: “The economic crisis could represent an opportunity to change”

The achievements made by women all over the world towards equity in education are still very far from making an impact on their having a fair share in the economy or in political power. This can be concluded from the updated figures of the Gender Equity Index (GEI) 2012, published by Social Watch on the eve of International Women’s Day, March 8. None of the 154 countries considered in the study has narrowed the gender gap to an “acceptable” level.

Egyptian women in Tahrir Square,
Cairo, on January 2011.
(Photo: monasosh/Flickr/CC)

On the occasion of International Women’s Day, the International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH) and 14 citizens’ organizations of the Arab world, among them several members of Social Watch, called upon national governments and parliaments to implement 20 measures to establish the equality between women and men.

Women's health clinic in
(Photo: advencap/Flickr/CC)

The Southern African Human Rights NGO Network (SAHRINGON) Tanzania Chapter, national focal point of Social Watch, has urged the government to amend or repeal all discriminatory laws based on gender for the country to achieve the equality between men and women provided by the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), reported Tanzanian newspaper The Guardian.

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