Pope Paul VI discusses a “Growing Distortion” perpetrated often on less industrial nations:
57. Highly industrialized nations export their own manufactured products, for the most part. Less developed nations, on the other hand, have nothing to sell but raw materials and agricultural crops. As a result of technical progress, the price of manufactured products is rising rapidly and they find a ready market. But the basic crops and raw materials produced by the less developed countries are subject to sudden and wide-ranging shifts in market price; they do not share in the growing market value of industrial products.
This poses serious difficulties to the developing nations. They depend on exports to a large extent for a balanced economy and for further steps toward development. Thus the needy nations grow more destitute, while the rich nations become even richer.
We’ve seen this to some extent in the half-century since this document was written. Sometimes leadership in developing countries cooperates more readily with those who will give them personal wealth, rather than siding with their own.
This encyclical letter is © Copyright – Libreria Editrice Vaticana, and can be found in its entirety at this link.
The image is of Lady Justice at the Central Criminal Court of London.