GLOBAL: Invest to stop battle for raw materials, firms told
Businesses and governments must do more to address looming shortages in raw materials, such as water and crops, in emerging markets, according to a new report on global risk.
Volatile commodity prices and competition for resources are singled out as two major threats to stability in emerging markets in the Global Risks 2010 report, published today (14 January) by the World Economic Forum (WEF) and leading insurance firms.
"We are facing an increase in world population to 9.1bn by 2050, which will require a 70% increase in food production," Raj Singh, chief risk officer at Swiss Re, told a press conference on the report in London today (14 January).
"This is a creeping risk that is coming upon us. It is a very important area to look at," said Singh.
He said that more partnerships between business and government are needed to invest in agriculture, water resources and infrastructure in developing countries.
A case study on India, published by the WEF last year, revealed that current consumption patterns suggest there will be a 40% shortfall in water supply and demand in the country by 2030.
Multinational drinks companies are increasngly large users of water and other raw materials in developing markets, such as India, China and parts of Africa, as they look to expand sales there.
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