Focus report

The 'Report on the Mediterranean' is an annual publication of the ISSM. Three quarters of the world's population have at their disposal a quarter of the world's product. The wealthiest 10 percent has half. This is information that is often read with regard to the distribution of product among countries at the beginning of the third millennium. However, the situation regarding the inequalities on a global scale was already changing at the turn of the millennium. This change has accelerated in the last few years. Distant seems the time in which, in economics, development was considered as a cumulative process, which increased the wealth of the already rich, whereas it augmented the misery of the poor. So, fifty years ago, the economist K. G. Myrdal, to represent the increasing inequalities, cited the biblical phrase in which it is said that he who has more will have even more and will live in abundance, and who has little will see taken away the little he has. Today, it seems more realistic to think that economic modernization, which started two centuries ago, has involved right from the beginning only a part of the world's population: Europe followed by countries of European immigration, above all the United States.