Conventional wisdom dictates that money should be deposited in a bank rather than under a mattress. Aside from the security motives, the bank typically pays an interest, even if minimal, to depositors. This is all the more reason to store your money at a bank rather than your house. But this classic adage appears to be no longer applicable as the world enters another recession, which is poised to be worse than the 2008 economic crash.
Recently, the Bank of Japan announced it was implementing negative interest rates . Even though seen as a surprise to many, this tool is not a novel financial innovation but has previously been implemented by other major governments to no avail. As the world enters a deflationary cycle, this financial tool should not be considered farfetched because more countries including the US might use such tactics to help create the inflation rate that central banks desire.
What Does It Mean?
The Bank of Japan announced the new rate would be minus 0.1% for excess reserves . This means depositors will be required to pay a “fee or tax” for placing their reserves in the bank. Since the 2008 crash, economies across the globe have tried to employ different financial tricks to buoy their languishing economies. These tactics included quantitative easing, currency devaluation/printing, and reductions in interest rate. The intent behind these methods was to spur an economic revival. These strategies, despite their burdensome cost on taxpayers, have yielded momentary bliss at best but have not helped the economies escape the abyss. With oil nose-diving and other commodities falling in price, the global economy is bracing itself for a deflationary cycle. Ideally, central banks desire an inflation rate around 2-3% to ensure price and economic stability. Despite attempts, many nations around the world including Japan have failed to achieve this sought after rate. Thus another tool is rolled out; negative interest rates. The intent is to create a disincentive to save. Although sounding a bit oxymoronic and financially imprudent, central banks despise the high savings rate it is currently seeing amongst its business and individual depositors . For now, the Bank of Japan has mainly targeted financial institutions in order to dissuade them from accruing cash. In theory, this “fee” would make the institutions more apt to lend and spend money, which will create the desired inflation and revive the economy.
Foreshadowing a Larger Looming Economic Meltdown
2016 began as an abysmal year for global financial markets. The Chinese stock market is crashing, oil prices are falling to new lows, and it appears the world is entering another recession. Despite the claim by politicians that the global economy was rescued from the brink of collapse, it is all a fata morgana. In reality, the world never fully recovered from the last meltdown. Instead the global approach was to flood the markets with printed currency, using a bandage solution for a larger endemic issue, which is starting to peel off quickly. Even though the Bank of Japan’s measures are limited to financial institutions at this time, if the results are not favorable, expansion of this method can extend to everyone. Negative interest rates are not a new phenomenon; the European Central Bank undertook a similar measure last year in a failed attempt to revive the ailing EU economies . It failed to yield the outcome they desired and some of their member states’ fragile economies are on the brink of collapse today. Italy appears to be one of those nations. Thus to avert a repeat of 2008, Italy has implemented another financial tactic; “bail-in”. The “bail-in” approach will allow the banks to be rescued by levying any losses incurred on large depositors and creditors . Even though the “bail-in” has been relegated to a certain segment of bank depositors at the moment, it could always be extended to all depositors if the situation worsens similar to Cyprus’ financial fiasco .
All these measures are a precursor of what is to come in the global financial system. The unfavorable economic conditions in these countries are symptom of a larger impending economic issue that will affect most of the globe. This financial tactic will not rescue Japan from the upcoming economic recession. As people watch the Japanese implement these financial measures, they should be more apprehensive about what may come to a bank near them in the near future.
CBDC vs Cryptocurrency: The Future of Global Financial Order
In the rapidly evolving digital era, the global financial landscape is undergoing profound transformation. At the heart of the debate on the future of digital currency, two concepts dominate the discussion: Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) and cryptocurrency. While both offer distinct visions for the future of global finance, there are strong indications that CBDCs hold greater potential to be adopted as a global standard.
A study by the Atlantic Council, a US-based think tank, reveals that 130 countries, representing 98% of the global economy, are currently exploring digital versions of their currencies. Nearly half of these are in advanced stages of development, testing, or launch. All G20 nations, except Argentina, are in these advanced stages. Eleven countries, including some in the Caribbean and Nigeria, have launched their CBDCs. Meanwhile, China has tested its CBDC with 260 million people across 200 different scenarios. However, despite the global push for CBDCs, countries like Nigeria have seen disappointing adoption, while Senegal and Ecuador have halted their developments. Here are some fundamental reasons why CBDCs hold more promise than Cryptocurrencies in setting global financial standards:
1. Authority and Regulation
One of the primary advantages of CBDCs is the oversight and regulation by central banks. With a central authority controlling its circulation and use, CBDCs offer a higher level of trust and security for users and other stakeholders. CBDCs, supervised by central banks, are deemed safer due to a centralized authority ensuring consistent policy and regulation application. The ability to track and monitor transactions to prevent illegal activities, value stability, advanced security infrastructure, legal protection, and monetary control by central banks enhance user trust and security. Moreover, with central bank backing, CBDCs have backup and recovery mechanisms ensuring the digital currency’s integrity and availability.
2. Stability and Sustainability
Cryptocurrencies often face high price volatility, hindering their acceptance as a stable medium of exchange. In contrast, CBDCs, backed by central banks, are expected to offer more consistent value stability. Cryptocurrency price volatility is often driven by speculation, low liquidity, news and regulatory responses, and market immaturity. The nascent crypto market, dominated by retail investors, tends to move based on emotions like fear or greed rather than fundamental analysis. On the other hand, CBDCs, regulated by central banks, are designed for stability, expected to provide more consistent value stability than decentralized cryptocurrencies.
3. Financial System Integration
CBDCs, issued and overseen by central banks, offer easier integration into existing financial infrastructure. With full backing from central banks and existing legal and regulatory frameworks, CBDCs can seamlessly integrate into traditional banking and financial systems, facilitating cross-border transactions and exchanges with traditional currencies. For instance, Swift, a financial messaging service provider, is focusing on CBDC interoperability. They’ve initiated beta testing with several central banks and over 30 financial institutions to ensure new digital currencies operate smoothly alongside current fiat currencies. This aim seeks to address potential global fragmentation in CBDC development.
In contrast, cryptocurrencies, with their decentralized nature, might face challenges integrating with existing financial infrastructure due to the absence of a central authority and regulatory challenges, as well as acceptance by financial institutions.
4. Global Acceptance
As an official currency issued by central banks, CBDCs have the potential for widespread acceptance among nations, becoming an integral part of the global financial order. CBDCs, being official currencies issued by central banks, enjoy the trust and credibility of a nation’s monetary authority, facilitating their acceptance among the public. For instance, China’s Digital Yuan, backed by the People’s Bank of China, has seen extensive domestic acceptance. Moreover, CBDCs are designed to integrate with existing payment systems, as seen with the Sand Dollar project in the Bahamas that enables transactions via smartphones. On an international level, CBDCs can facilitate cross-border monetary cooperation, with countries like ASEAN members considering the interoperability of their CBDCs to ease trade and investment.
5. Transparency and Accountability
The ability to track CBDC transactions provides governments with an effective tool to enhance financial oversight and tax compliance. The transparency offered by CBDCs facilitates the identification of potentially unreported transactions and the detection of suspicious transaction patterns related to money laundering or terrorist financing. Additionally, with real-time monitoring, governments can promptly detect and respond to illegal activities, such as fraud, ensuring the integrity and security of their financial systems remain intact.
6. Promoting Financial Inclusion
CBDCs can play a pivotal role in promoting financial inclusion, providing access to financial services for those previously marginalized from traditional banking systems. CBDCs hold immense potential to boost financial inclusion, especially for those marginalized from traditional banking systems. With easy access via mobile devices and low transaction costs, CBDCs make financial services more accessible, especially in rural or remote areas.
Furthermore, the ease of account opening and cross-border transactions at more efficient costs supports migrant workers and those previously challenged by conventional banking services. For example, the Sand Dollar project in the Bahamas has showcased how CBDCs can expand access to financial services across the islands, allowing residents on remote islands to transact using just a mobile phone. Such initiatives demonstrate how CBDCs can be a crucial tool in promoting financial inclusion globally.
7. Monetary Policy Control
With CBDCs, central banks have an additional tool to implement monetary policy, allowing for more timely and effective interventions in the face of economic crises. CBDCs grant central banks enhanced capabilities to implement monetary policies. With better liquidity control and the ability to apply negative interest rates, central banks can respond more quickly and accurately to economic condition shifts.
Moreover, CBDCs allow for faster monetary policy transmission, such as direct stimulus provision to public accounts, and provide access to real-time transaction data. This capability is crucial as it allows for quicker responses to potential crises, maintaining economic and price stability. Additionally, swift and accurate actions from central banks in crisis situations can boost public trust in financial institutions and the government. Thus, CBDCs can be a vital tool in a central bank’s monetary policy toolkit, reinforcing their role in safeguarding a nation’s economic well-being.
While cryptocurrencies offer benefits like decentralization and privacy, the lack of consistent regulation and high volatility make them less ideal as a global financial standard. On the other hand, CBDCs, with the backing and regulation of central banks, promise a new era in a more stable, transparent, and inclusive global financial landscape.
In the context of modern diplomacy, the acceptance of CBDCs as a global standard can facilitate cross-border economic cooperation, strengthen bilateral and multilateral relationships, and advance sustainable development agendas. As a step towards a more integrated and harmonious future, CBDCs might be the key to transforming the global financial order.
IMF Conditions vs. Pakistan’s Economic Future
The solution to an ever-worsening economic mess is becoming more and more crucial to the tenuous stability of Pakistan. One of the most egregious spikes in inflationary pressure in history is being experienced by the country. Only war-torn Afghanistan’s economic situation is comparable to the current state of affairs, where Gross Domestic Product (GDP), per capita income, and GDP growth rates are at historic lows in comparison to their regional counterparts. Pakistan’s economic mess is caused by a complicated convergence of structural and intrinsic fault lines. The country is currently mired in the quagmire of a third consecutive year of weak GDP growth, ensnared in the grip of a protracted recession. The humiliating classification of Pakistan as a UN debt-distressed entity, which places it in the unenviable third place among a cohort of 40 nations similarly affected, exacerbates its financial predicament. Unavoidably, the nation’s fiscal allocation is set aside in a deplorable amount to pay off its onerous interest debt.
Currently, for the second half of September, the interim government has unrelentingly imposed record-high fuel prices, making the situation even worse for a populace already suffering from rife inflation. The newly elected caretaker government, led by Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakkar, was constrained by the International Monetary Fund’s strict conditions attached to the recently sanctioned $3 billion loan, and had no choice but to pass along the rising global oil prices to struggling Pakistani consumers in order to meet the lender’s short-term fiscal goals. This inflation index is ominously overshadowed by the effects of these price increases, both immediate and long-term. The central bank might be forced to raise its crucial policy rate in the following month if inflation turns out to be higher than expected.
As Pakistan finds itself ensnared in the vice grip of an International Monetary Fund (IMF) regime, it is an unspoken axiom of the business world that is strictly upheld. Pakistan, like many of its developing counterparts, teeters precariously on the edge of a debt quagmire, where the toll exacted manifests as spiraling inflation, a swift depreciation of the national currency, a shrinking production landscape, and the gradual erosion of social welfare disbursements, all at the dictate of international financial institutions. Whereas, according to United Nations report, Pakistan’s rapidly growing population will number 330 million people by 2050. While it might be tempting to believe that Pakistan’s troubles would stay within its borders, history warns against this. Currently, Pakistan is dealing with unemployment and inflation rates that are noticeably higher than those of many of its neighbors. A troubling picture of Pakistan’s development is painted by the Human Development Index (HDI), which places the country in the dismal 161st place out of 185 countries in 2022. The index measures a country’s progress across dimensions of health, education, and living standards. Pakistan essentially struggles with some of the worst human development in the world, ranking 25th overall.
Though, this bleak scenario has a complex history that includes poor economic governance, widespread corruption, and disproportionate funding for the defense industry, which feeds fiscal imbalances. Fostering investments in the education and professional expertise of the young cohort emerges as an imperative linchpin for generating prospects of a more sustainable economic trajectory in a demographic where half the population is still under the age of 22. Likewise, the prolonged political and economic unrest in Pakistan foreshadows a looming threat for the Indo-Pacific region. Particularly in its interactions with India and its function as China’s regional proxy, the nation’s governance fragility and impending fiscal insolvency portend ominous implications.
Undoubtedly, Pakistan may find itself entangled in a situation worse than Sri Lanka’s recent economic and political cataclysm, which was calmed by India’s quick emergency aid, giving Sri Lanka the flexibility to renegotiate its financial commitments with international creditors. But a collapse in Pakistan would have far-reaching effects throughout the region. The military brass may be tempted to play the India card, as has happened in the annals of history, if there is the possibility of widespread civil unrest or schisms within the military echelons. It would become a dangerous gambit to fabricate a crisis in Kashmir or plan an incursion by extremists across the border, certain that India would be forced to act.
Lastly, there is a discernible glimmer of hope from the sharp top of this cliff. A genuine and unadulterated effort to address these dire fiscal issues, free from the harmful influences of geopolitical maneuvering, may be sparked by the economy’s abrupt descent into turmoil. The nation is still struggling to deal with the political system’s inherent flaws, so the long-term outlook is far from encouraging. A fundamental departure from the traditional vertical framework of governance, exemplified by a centralized state or government, is urgently needed in Pakistan. A paradigm shifts toward the idea of network governance, in which a horizontal web of organizations operates with individual autonomy and simultaneously contributes to the overall economic tapestry, is imperative.
Why Global Goals Are Global Holes in Need to Be Filled With Entrepreneurialism?
Entrepreneurialism is not a Utopian dreamland; it is a war of special skills focused on solving impossible problems, applying real value creation models, exploring and validating commercialization, and optimizing human talents to make such ideas standardize, monetize, and globalize. No university can teach this, as we are all already gifted with this talent worldwide. Discover your own entrepreneurial powers.
Why is entrepreneurial mysticism not occupied in search of abstract blanket solutions like poverty eradication or humankind living on full stomachs? Instead, it focuses on pragmatic and immediately implementable solutions like creating a slice-bread factory and becoming a global giant. No further proof is required if over a million entrepreneurs have already created over a million original small and medium businesses, and each has grown into creating over a million jobs. Why the lingering fear of identifying at least one Nobel Prize Winner in Economics, whoever built one such creation?
At the same time, entrepreneurialism will never dream of living in a super deluxe home but rather first search for nails, a hammer, and a piece of lumber. Entrepreneurialism is a call to march straight ahead, like a soldier engaged in a tactical do-or-die battle of skills on productivity, performance, and profitability, but staying far away from dreaming of victory and retiring in the castle with bling-bling parties. Far too many other occupations can achieve such results, but this peculiar behavior differs from the prime spirits of entrepreneurial mysticism. It is always based on finding powerful, particular, superior quality, and proprietary solutions, marketable as highly efficient value offerings at a profitable, sustainable, and reputable answer to the existing problems. A study of the last 1000 life-altering, game-changer entrepreneurs is essential.
Prophets and Saints have repeatedly died while dreaming of eliminating global poverty and hunger while searching for good health. Perhaps the United Nations, in pursuit of the grand vision global goals, saw an assembly of such incredible human potential to create the lineup of the world’s most impossible dreams and bundled them as if some sudden Rapture would finally wide open a few heavenly doors.
The cruelties of the globalization of such large-scale ideas and the difficulties of creating entrepreneurial journeys are neither found in academic nor bureaucratic mindsets. Openly visible like a book, all entrepreneurial adventures from steam to railways or bare wires to light-up continents or Kitty Hawk to global airlines are based on unique entrepreneurial mysticism.
After all, the noble cause of the global goals of the United Nations with endless international road shows, million meetings, and millions of narratives today stands still at a bridge too far. It was nobody’s fault; perhaps entrepreneurialism was eliminated from the equation for some reason. Nevertheless, how does entrepreneurialism work today?
Entrepreneurialism can immediately help global goals, not as another academic study but as a direct, bold, and open entrepreneurial response. The challenge is to select the priorities of each global goal and transform them from great visionary ideas into demonstratable working models. Graduate them quickly into value-creating workable models and move them to globally marketable, fiscally sustainable, interactive, digitally savvy, and functioning live for platform economies. All this must be globally acceptable as commonsense narratives and explainable logical models.
Now, this is not a call for academia or bureaucracies in formal black robes; this immediately demands an urgent addition of global-age entrepreneurialism to blend the scientific ideas and existing global goals energies to achieve balanced mindset combinations of current job seeker mindsets with entrepreneurial job creator mindsets to create high speed fertile and pragmatic battlefields.
Vision is not about seeing something big, wide, and far afar, but instead seeing something minimal, narrow but far more clearly and sharply focused. Entrepreneurialism is not about searching for an eagle flying somewhere in the sky but catching a bird in hand. They drive by creating maximum impact with minimal resources, deploy immediately applicable pragmatism, and achieve earth-shattering results.
Steve Jobs never dreamed of creating an HQ with circularity to hold a trillion-dollar company; he only wanted to create an iPhone and fight every conceivable force of telephony of the day against him, to make a real highly functional super phone, with lightning speed to immediately solve the global communication handicaps and change mobility for the world. So this is what he did, and that changed the world.
Henceforth, vision in entrepreneurialism is a borderline illusion, which risks becoming a hallucination when priorities and skills are oddly blended. Focus is where all the tactical battles are won. Open-ended superhuman goals are great ideas; they make an excellent copy and graphics from the logo-slogan agencies, but never the tactical battlefield formation execution plans with the cry for the battle.
To apply architectural or mathematical wisdom, big global goals can only be achieved with precise advancement and correct sequences. More entrepreneurialism must be immediately added to advance the impossible big globalalities of the goals. With articulated design and real value creation with refined practicality, super speed of execution, and a proven approach to commercialization, monetization, and globalization, things will be done much faster.
A prerequisite is a deep study of the National Mobilization of Entrepreneurialism and how to create oceans of new small and medium enterprises. Once superior quality and global expansion are established, such ideas flourish under the global goal of protecting the future.
GLOBAL GOALS + ENTREPRENEURIALISM + NATIONAL + MOBILZATION = CLIMATE SOLUTIONS
How can countries come to the Global SDG Summit with clear benchmarks to tackle grand schemes without experiences of global scale deployment and mobilization of real value creation models and systematic monetization and commercialization with value offering models?
What are the best scenarios to compile and create national mobilization of entrepreneurialism to uplift the critical points leading to entrepreneurial narratives and, with the right teams, once balanced, creating authoritative, collaborative, and constructive dialogues that are good for the nation, solid for the citizenry, and common sense for financial markets?
In the next 1,000 days, the new world will not be dystopian but a battlefield landscape fighting mental wars of sorts in search of the first industrial revolution of the mind.
Let the new world come together and mobilize new wisdom of mindset hypothesis; how will future organizations and global bodies differentiate and balance entrepreneurial job creator mindsets with educated and trained job seeker mindsets? Job seekers build the enterprises, and Job creators originate such new enterprises. Balancing both mindsets is a real victory.
Superpowers are fighting for global posture, and micro-power nations are struggling to survive; this is now a climax point. This is where national mobilization of entrepreneurialism appears, a logical solution for the country so it can enter the gate to join the races into the successive league or remain at a standstill outside.
Population-rich nations are on a fast track and opening, leaving knowledge-rich countries behind. The war of competence will become as open as the track and field games of the Olympics. Where countries will have their best team stand up to the global age of competition and shine on global stage.
What will newly formatted Global Goals look like when combined with balanced mindsets and meaningful national economic uplifts? However, once mandated, any nation-by-nation deployments of the national citizenry, with speedy mobilization of national entrepreneurialism, will create a common mindshare. Immediate Digitization of SMEs with classification and categorization will create global export trajectories. After all, such maximum optimization of SME talents guided by entrepreneurial job creator mindsets is an intuitive and logical approach to achieving big global goals.
Imagine if 10K to 100K high-potential SMEs within a region or a country were placed on up-skilling and re-skilling platforms with intentions to quadruple their exportability. If such deployments achieved 10% to 50% results, they would make the nation’s most prominent economic contributions.
Understanding the narrative of Expothon Worldwide: Expothon has been sharing information weekly with some 2000 senior officials at the Cabinet level in around 100 countries for the last 50 to 100 weeks. Mastery of new entrepreneurial economic thinking is a new revolution in SME Mobilization. We are constantly adding new talents. A global high-level virtual event series will further advance the agenda; in planning are debates to clarify and table turnkey mobilization options in the coming months. Study more on Google.
Conclusion: Smoothly polished and well-balanced academic studies often neither find any rescue plans nor assemblies of nations discover some workable solutions, but instead, bold open dialogues to bring entrepreneurialism as the second wheel of the same cart struggling on a long journey may find answers for both. Deep study via Google is a prerequisite. The rest is easy.
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