LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwire - Oct 17, 2012) - Demographer Brad Edmondson outlines what's at stake in Big Tobacco's drive to expand sales outside the affluent West. "All over the developing world," Edmondson writes, "young women with jobs and newly conferred freedom to make their own decisions are taking up smoking for all the reasons their counterparts in America did a century ago. They are what cigarette marketers' dreams are made of -- and what keeps strategists at the World Health Organization up at night."
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Roger Bate of the American Enterprise Institute reports signs of a truce in the trench warfare between pharmaceutical companies and developing nations over intellectual property rights. "Beneath the heated façade," Bate explains, "cooler heads are prevailing. While governments have failed to chart a way forward, drug producers are recognizing that it is possible to craft private solutions that increase access to drugs without compromising their property rights."
Jonathan H. Adler (Case Western Reserve Law School) and Nathaniel Stewart (White and Case) celebrate the triumph of privatized ocean fisheries -- the antithesis of the no-holds-barred crab fishery made famous by The World's Deadliest Catch. "What made for better ecological management may not have made for good TV," they explain. "But it was good news for those who work in the crab fishery, and will be good news for other marine fisheries if catch shares can continue to catch on."
Lee Lane at the Hudson Institute in Washington makes the case for oil. "Some day, some way," he acknowledges, "the global economy will make the transition to other fuels. But the economic and geopolitical arguments for proactive policies that aim to wean Americans from the pump don't wear well in the light of day."
Nevin Adams and Jack VanDerhei of the Employee Benefit Research Institute explain how small changes in the design of 401(k) plans can spell the difference between retirement in the sunshine and spending those golden years in the their kid's spare bedroom. "But the longer the issue of retirement income security remains on the back burner -- both for individuals and for policymakers -- the fewer options you have to make up for a slow start," they write.
McKinsey consultants Alberto Chaia, Beth Cobert and Elena Thomas focus on the promise of virtual banking -- and the formidable obstacles. "The 2.2 billion adults in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East who don't use formal financial institutions to save or borrow money make up nearly 90 percent of the world's 'unbanked' adults," they explain. "They're generally poor and engaged in informal and unstable employment, such as seasonal farm work. Complicating matters, they often lack a formal home address and have no financial or credit history."
Anusuya Chatterjee of the Milken Institute provides a quick peek at the Institute's report ranking the best American cities for successful aging. "Don't confuse the index with the many rankings and opinion polls that identify the sunniest or most inexpensive spots to live out retirement," she writes. "Up to 90 percent of older Americans want to age in place, according to a recent survey by AARP, and our goal is to enhance their communities so they can do so with the greatest quality of life possible."
Harris Allen, a Massachusetts-based health care consultant, ponders the consequences of the Obama Administration's disinclination to use of the experience of big business in administering the Affordable Care Act. "The success or failure of the ACA to accomplish its goals could well turn on cross-pollination between the federal and state bureaucracies administering the new law and the thousands of businesses still offering health care coverage," he argues.
The Milken Institute Review is sent quarterly to the world's leading business and financial executives, senior policy makers and journalists. It is edited by Peter Passell, former economics columnist for The New York Times. You may find it on the Institute's site at http://www.milkeninstitute.org/publications/publications.taf?function=detail&ID=38801370&cat=mir, where you can also download the app for iPhone and iPad.
About the Milken Institute
A nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank, the Milken Institute believes in the power of capital markets to solve urgent social and economic challenges. Its mission is to improve lives around the world by advancing innovative economic and policy solutions that create jobs, widen access to capital and enhance health.