Saturday, October 28, 2006

India in the First World: Learning the tricks of the trade
Mittal Steel has just bought the entire iron ore reserves of Liberia from its interim government after intense lobbying by the company of the US government. The deal will see the creation of a state within a state, with Mittal Steel controlling the port and parts of the railway system not to mention the control it will exhert on the country's economic policy. The company will have a tax holiday for 5 years after which it can choose which taxes it wishes to pay. The deal seems to me to be reminiscent of the deal under which Shell bought oil reserves in the Ogoni region of Nigeria, depriving the indigenous people of any rights over the oil reserves - the protests of the Ogoni people got some coverage after the execution of their spokesman Ken Saro-Wiwa, a University professor, and eight other leaders of the Moverment for the Survival of the Ogoni People , but these were short lived.

Liberia - Key Facts (Source: CIA World Factbook)

Population - 3 million

Life Expectancy - 39 years

GDP/head - $1000

Literacy Rate - 57.5 %

Budget - Revenue: $ 85.4 Million
Expenditure: $ 90.5 Million
Millitary Spending: $ 67.4 Miliion

On a similar note Mittal Arcelor workers are protesting in Kazakhstan over low wages amid adverse safety conditions after 41 miners died in an accident.


ayla said...

this world sucks :O(

Ahsan said...

those numbers are truly insane. their military budget is, what, 75% of their total spending? i guess now i dont feel so bad about pakistan's figure being around 5%. good post alien panda.

Moss J said...


Alien Panda said...

Ahsan these numbers are truly insane, perhaps even more so is the fact that their literacy rate is 57.5% whereas Pakistan's literacy rate is 48.7%!

Source CIA factbook:

Please no comments about the figures being biased due their source being 'a western agent of oppression'! I live here and the country's illiterate.