Stories: Economy & Business

  • Preying on disaster: How human trafficking has spiked in quake-shattered Nepal

    The year following two earthquakes that devastated Nepal saw a spike in desperate people falling into the clutches of human traffickers. Two years later, with the country’s infrastructure and economy still in ruins, NGOs say human trafficking is still on the rise. Nepal has long been a source of economic migrants, and the money they’ve sent...

  • ‘She’s like my wife, you know how it is’

    Sushant, 18, was accompanying two girls from his college to a nearby market to shop for make-up supplies when he was stopped and questioned by the Nepal police. “These checks are a complete nuisance,” said the young man. “It’s harassment!” His other young friends laughed and waved as they strolled across the border from Nepal...

  • Women in India Are Turning a Curse Into ‘Positive Action’ With Entrepreneurship

    CHATWAL, India — A group of about half a dozen women are gathered at a lone cement home in a vast expanse of farmland covered in waist-high wheat and mustard seed plants in tribal Eastern India. Sitting on the ground around a wicker basket and large silver bowl, the women expertly roll a dough-like mash into balls. They are...

  • Olympic Abandonment

    The behemoth sports stadiums on the sprawling grounds of Rio’s Olympic Park were built to impress international visitors for the 2016 Summer Games. Today, they are eerily deserted. The space re-opened as a public recreation area in January, but aside from the occasional security guard, there is hardly a human in sight at the 2.5 billion real ($800 million), 300-acre complex. ...

  • Trump Towers Rio still hasn’t been built—and the residents it pushed out couldn’t be happier

    Rio de Janeiro, Brazil –– José Paulo Simplicio de Souza was devastated when the government forced him out of his home near the commercial center of Rio de Janeiro to make way for a luxury waterfront property three years ago. The 33-year old food-vendor’s sorrow later turned to disgust when he found out the 45th U...

  • Rio hits the brakes on controversial favela cable car

    The black cables scarring the skyline of Complexo do Alemao stopped running months ago. For the residents of the favelas below, they're a constant reminder of how even one of Rio de Janeiro's most ostentatious projects built ahead of the 2016 Olympics has fallen victim to the financial crisis gripping the state. From the start, plans for the...

  • A New Bridge in Johannesburg Reveals How Little South Africa has Changed

    It’s a 15-minute drive from the Ferrari-lined streets of Johannesburg’s Sandton suburb to Alexandra, one of South Africa’s poorest townships. But for 56-year-old cleaner Mooko Dikotla and thousands of others who commute by foot from Alexandra to what’s known as “the richest square mile in Africa,” the four-mile trek over...

  • Water’s Worth

    A country has to sell what it's got. Lesotho always had more rain and snow than it knew what to do with. So Lesotho made a deal with its neighbor, South Africa, to buy the water. The country moved rivers and built one of the most impressive water projects in Africa to deliver it. Then the drought hit. ...

  • ‘A City Lost in the Desert’: A Visit to the Sahara’s Uranium Capital

    In May 2013, a car bomb detonated near the Somair uranium mine in Arlit, in northern Niger, killing one person. Moments earlier, in Agadez, some 150 miles south, Al Qaeda-affiliated militants waged an assault on Nigerien army positions that killed over 20 people. That same year, Niger’s two uranium mines produced...

  • Oil and Lava

    On the final day of March 2014, President Rafael Correa was blinking away tears on live television. Extreme close-ups showed the bombastic leader struggling to suppress emotion as he listened to student Daniela Armijo thank him for creating “the hope of a new Ecuador.” But Armijo was not just any student. And this was not a run-of-the-mill political event....