Sub-prime crisis or solution? PDF Print E-mail
The shaping of policy at UNODC (2002-2010)

 

Money is tight these days. Creditors have been badly burned, and banks are wary of lending to each other or to risky clients. And yet, in many parts of the world, sub-prime lending is exactly what is needed to foster development and reduce vulnerability to drugs and crime.

Lending money to people to help them make ends meet is not a new idea - especially in some of the poorest and most unstable regions of the world. The problem is, it's usually called loan sharking or extortion. This kind of informal money lending deepens poverty and strengthens organized crime.

Last Updated on Sunday, 04 May 2014 17:13
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L’Italia, Sodoma e Camorra PDF Print E-mail
The shaping of policy at UNODC (2002-2010)

Posted: 2 December 2013
This entry is only available in Italian.

"Tutti quelli che conosco o sono morti o sono in galera. Io voglio diventare un boss."

Parole forti, scritte da un giovane carcerato in una lettera alla famiglia. Dove pensate che sia detenuto l'autore della lettera? In un paese del sud America, controllato dalle bande dei narcotrafficanti? In Africa in una di quelle fatiscenti celle in cui vengono rinchiusi i bambini-soldato ogni qualvolta scoppia una guerra civile? O meglio ancora in uno stato ex comunista in cui la transizione verso l'economia di mercato ha fatto registrare un'impennata vertiginosa dei crimini?

Aggiungi ora montagne di rifiuti nelle strade, traffico paralizzato, aria irrespirabile.

Last Updated on Sunday, 04 May 2014 17:16
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Bashing the Bankers PDF Print E-mail
The shaping of policy at UNODC (2002-2010)

Posted : 19 January 2014

Bankers are getting a run for their money these days. Their greed, arrogance and deception have shaken people's confidence in their profession and the trust of the institutions that conspired with them to cause the crisis -- hedge and investment funds, insurance companies, rating and audit agencies. During he 2008-12 crisis, the world's financial architecture as constructed in the past 60 years, came close to collapse. And we are just at the beginning of the drama, as jobs, markets, revenues and production, destroyed by the crisis, are recovering only very slowly -- especially in Europe.

Last Updated on Sunday, 04 May 2014 17:19
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L'opium du terrorisme PDF Print E-mail
The shaping of policy at UNODC (2002-2010)

Affiché: le 23 septembre 2008

Le 17 septembre dernier, je me suis rendu à Paris principalement pour parler de l'Afghanistan. 

Dans un article d'opinion publié dans Le Monde du 19 septembre, j'ai souligné les liens qui existent entre l'insurrection et le commerce d'opium. J'ai également attiré l'attention sur le fait que les talibans pourraient proclamer un moratoire sur la culture d'opium dans les zones qu'ils contrôlent.

Devant la Commission parlementaire des Affaires étrangères, de la Défense et des Forces armées j'ai donné une vue d'ensemble de l'évolution du problème de l'opium en Afghanistan et de son impact sur la sécurité. 

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 January 2011 11:12
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Synthetic Drugs: The Agony and the Ecstasy PDF Print E-mail
The shaping of policy at UNODC (2002-2010)

Posted 17 September 2008 

Last week in Bangkok I launched the latest report from UNODC called Amphetamines and Ecstasy: 2008 Global ATS Assessment . It provides a sharp picture of the situation of synthetic drugs around the world.

It shows that for many people, synthetic drugs have become the tonic for fast and competitive times. Around the world, people are popping pills and powder known as amphetamine-type stimulants (or ATS). In the West, it is usually used as a "party drug" or to enhance performance (also known as cheating), among professional athletes. In the East, it is being taken to stay alert in manual jobs, like on assembly lines or long-haul trucking.

By our estimates, more than 30 million people use amphetamine, methamphetamine (meth) or ecstasy at least once a year. The global market for these stimulants is estimated at $65 billion.

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 January 2011 11:11
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Raping the Planet PDF Print E-mail
The shaping of policy at UNODC (2002-2010)

Posted: 15 February 2014

Climate change and environmental sustainability are high priorities today. A shocking truth is that criminals are profiting from the destruction of our planet.

altIllegal logging is destroying earth's lungs. In parts of South East Asia, the problem is so acute that more than a third of all timber exports are illegally sourced. I have flown over parts of Indonesia and Thailand where you can only see wasteland where precious forests used to stand.  This billion dollar business - greased by  high-level collusion - is costing governments dearly, creating flash floods and landslides, and reducing the earth's capacity to absorb carbon dioxide.

To feed the drug addiction of cocaine users in Europe and North America, vast swathes of Andean forest are being slashed and burned to make way for coca plants, and streams are being polluted by toxic chemicals.

Last Updated on Sunday, 04 May 2014 17:17
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