Stories: Economy & Business

  • 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....

  • This Couple Aims to Make Ecuador the Cradle of Fine Chocolate Making

    Most of the world's chocolate today comes from America and Europe, and it's made from cacao (cocoa) beans grown in Africa. But at least one South American company wants to make the best chocolate in the world from beans grown at home in the cradle of cacao. "Latin America has been sitting on a gold mine of cacao...

  • Venezuela Elections 2015: Why Venezuelans Are Fleeing the Country

    Tendrils of smoke filled the air as Sarahay Toti flipped a spatula full of sizzling pork on the grill. It was a rainy Friday night, and there were few customers at the tiny shop where she made and sold arepas, a dish from Toti’s native Venezuela made of cornmeal patties filled with meat and cheese. But she was...

  • Ecuador’s Oil Bust Draws Parallels to 1990s Financial Crisis

    Ecuador's economy is faltering thanks to a year of record low oil prices and fears of a "godzilla" El Niño forming in the Pacific Ocean. The situation is drawing bizarre parallels to the last major financial crisis to hit the small South American country in the late 1990s. KELLY MCEVERS, HOST: People in Ecuador are worried they'...

  • In Ecuador, Dependency on Beijing Financing of Development Projects Raises Fears, Uncertainty

    The long stretch of roadway snaking through the parched, rolling hills outside this sleepy Ecuadorean port city will one day wind up at the foot of one of the country’s most buzzed-about development projects: a mega-refinery that will transform Ecuador into a formidable force in the region’s oil and gas industry. When the grand structure is...