“Frozen Cash”- Iceland’s Big Decision

When arrived in Vienna in early January of 2009, headlines of every newspaper discussed the decline of Iceland’s economy and soon the countries government.  The government had become ridiculously overexposed in Baltic and US mortgages after bailing out the top 3 national banks in second half of 2008.  During this period of distress the Iceland’s króna lost half its value, inflation went from the normal 3-4% to 14%, and the country’s ruling coalition crumbled when the prime minister stepped down.  So even thought this country was a minuscule player in the global market, they were suffering a major economic collapse as a result of the global financial crisis. Continue reading

Transforming the Georgian Boonies into Places of New Age Technology

Over the past 14 years, the impact agriculture has on Georgia’s GDP  has gone down from 65.86% to 13.72%.  In Georgia the percent of Agriculture generating GDP was above that of Lower, middle income nations; however, in 2006 it went below, and continues to fall.  Georgia’s strength in agriculture declined as Georgia gained its independence and under went a civil war.  Prior to this time, Georgia exported in agricultural products to the Soviet Union, but that connection was lost in 1991.  According to World Bank, “Outputs fell by 70% and exports by 90%, the worst decline suffered by any transition economy.”

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The guerrilla president of Uruguay

Uruguay is a small country in South America that is sandwiched between Brazil and Argentina.  Brazil and Argentina struggled for control of Uruguay until 1828 when Uruguay gained its own independence.  Uruguay is a relatively small country, slightly smaller than the state of Washington, with a population of 3,494,382.  According to the cia world factbook the political and labor conditions of Uruguay are some of the freest of South America.  The death rate is 9.09 deaths per 1000 births, ranking 80th overall for the death rate, better than that of the United Kingdom, Spain, and Denmark.  The average life expectancy is 76.35 years at birth and 27.4% of the population lives below the poverty line. Continue reading