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Global Risks 2009

The World Economic Forum has released its annual take on Risks our world carries in the new year. The Global Risks Report 2009 is a compulsive read in these turbulent times and not just for Risk professionals.

You can download the report from:

http://www.weforum.org/en/initiatives/globalrisk/index.htm

The report suggests that the world may face risks of over $ 1 Trillion. (Billions don't seem to impress us anymore!)

The predominant risks that are termed pivotal risks by WEF (no surprises) are:

1) Deteriorating fiscal position of almost all countries - Not surprising when we see the huge amounts flushed down the bailout tanks. The global economies seem to be 'greedy pigs' swallowing up billions of government dollars. Obviously, someone pays up ultimately!

2) China hard landing - This is a bit of a let down since the world was looking up to China to pump up the demand and save the world. Looks like that is unlikely to happen and China's gargantuan problems will keep it busy to save the world.

3) Asset price collapse - Looks like the world will continue to be more worthless in 2009. Everything seems to be heading for a free fall. So, our collective global net worth continues to go down.

4) Resource challenges - Energy, food, water and all resources seem to be scarce and mismanaged globally.

5) Global Governance gaps  -  This is a new entrant and is a significant statement in that we are all collectively ineffective in governance of global issues - financial and non-financial. Quite a worrying thing in this networked world.

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I would recommend reading the entire report and prepare oneself to face the facts.

To me, a supreme piece of irony is that one of the chief contributors to the report is an institution who had a ringside view of almost all risks in 2008 -- CitiGroup!

 

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