For more than two decades unsustainable debt burdens have been the important development barrier of most countries in the South, restricting their policy space. Many years of "structural adjustment", multilateral "debt management", and several debt reduction schemes arbitrarily designed by creditors have not overcome the problem. This UNITAR online course provides facts and economic understanding of sovereign debt issues as a basis of both theoretical and practical work. It discusses general principles such as the rule of law, debtor rights, and human rights, so far still not fully granted to Southern debtors, arguing in favour of rule of law based solutions.
At the end of the course, the participants should be able to:
- State the present sovereign debt issues or burdens that obstruct a country’s development;
- Associate present international efforts to finance the MDGs with the problems of debt service and debt overhang;
- Explain solutions of insolvency protection and how they could be applied to sovereign debts by internationalizing US protection of overindebted public entities, and how it combines perfectly with reaching the MDGs; and
- Argue and defend equal treatment for all debtors to put a stop to the unjustifiable discrimination of Southern sovereign debtors.
The course includes the following modules:
- Module 1: Brief History of Debt Management until 1988
- Module 2: Brief History of Debt Management after 1988
- Module 3: Present Proposals and Strategies: Sovereign Insolvency Proposals, Uruguay’s Voluntary Debt Reprofiling, Argentina’s Unilateral Cancellation, and Nigeria’s Deal
- Module 4: An International "Chapter 9" for Countries
- Modules 5-7: Debt Distress and the MDGs
- Module 8: Debtor Rights, Rule of Law Based Insolvency Systems, Sustainability
- Module 9: NGO Advocacy for Debt Reduction cum Debtor Protection
- Module 10: The Concept of Sustainability of International Financial Institutions
- Module 11: The Problems of Overoptimism and Ownership
- Module 12: The Gleneagles Decision of the G8 and the Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative
- Module 13: The MDGs and Preferred Creditor Status
- Module 14: Lending or Granting: ODA and the MDGs
- Module 15: Problems with Present Debt Statistics and Indicators
In order to ensure the best possible outreach, the course will be delivered through e-learning. Through a multiple-instructional setting, the goal is to achieve the learning objectives by means of learning technologies that match personal learning styles and by the inclusion of non-linear learning that aims at the development of just-in-time skills of adult learners. At the same time, in order to allow participants maximum flexibility of scheduling , the learning will be conducted in an asynchronous manner. Using a state-of-the-art training architecture, UNITAR will combine self-learning with assessments and online discussions. The pedagogy - adapted specifically to professionals in full-time work - will help train participants through various experiences: absorb (read); do (activity); interact (socialize); reflect (relate to one’s own reality).
The intended audience includes professionals from government ministries, public or private entities involved with sovereign debt issues, as well as academics working on this issue, employees of international organisations, NGO staff, and other interested individuals.
A certificate of completion will be issued by UNITAR to all participants who complete the course-related assignments and assessments successfully. Course schedule is subject to change. Course fee is non-refundable but transferrable to another course or participant and subject to change as per UNITAR's policy on pricing.