Recent Seminar – Keynote: Alexander Downer

In May, I attend a seminar in which the Keynote Speaker was Alexander Downer.  Mr. Downer’s most recent position in Australia was of Foreign Affairs Minister from 2014 to 2018.   He is currently Executive Chair of the International School of Government at King’s College in London.

During his speech, Mr Downer addressed some interesting facts which assist with investment analysis.  I hope you find the take outs highlighted below of interest!

  • Poverty has halved in the past 20 years.
  • 90% of children worldwide are vaccinated.
  • Life expectancy has increased from 50 to 70 years old (the average life expectancy in Australia is 80.4 years for male and 84.6 for female)
  • There are 1.3 billion people in Africa – just has large as India and China.
  • Globalisation has created Nationalism, and in Mr Downers opinion, Populism is really Nationalism;
  • In the last 500 years, there has been 16 cases where a ‘rising power has challenged a ‘status quo’ power – 12 of these 16 cases lead to war
    • The worst of this was World War I
  • Only NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) countries are threatened by China
    • NATO is an intergovernmental military alliance formed between 29 North American and European countries in 1949 to guarantee the freedom and security of its members
  • There are constant cyber attacks – the greater global population is unaware of.
  • Australia is an extremely prosperous country, and he believes that “inactivity and indulgence borne out of complacency” as a result of the mining boom, may lead to issues for Australia in years to come.
  • Australia only emits 1.3% of Global Emissions.

Source:  Alexander Downer


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