International News Desk – At Home: Arctic university on Governor General’s agenda – In Foreign News: Peru’s inflation rate a staggering 216 billion per cent

International News Desk – At Home: Arctic university on Governor General’s agenda – In Foreign News: Peru’s inflation rate a staggering 216 billion per cent

At Home: Arctic university on Governor General’s agenda

Ottawa has labelled it a non-priority, but Governor General Michaëlle Jean continues to press for a university in the Arctic.

Speaking with The Canadian Press, Jean confirmed that She’s not about to abandon her efforts to have a university built in the region. As the Toronto Star reports, Jean has described Canada as a ?laggard? when it comes to providing higher learning for its northern population.

?Canada is at least 40 years behind,? she told reporters. ?Canada is the only northern state that doesn’t have a university in the North. Canada is four decades behind Norway, Finland, Sweden, the United States.?

The governor general’s goal is the creation of an institution that would not only serve northern aboriginal residents, but also attract ?non-aboriginal students and teachers to the North.?

While many have applauded her efforts, detractors point out that there are other, more urgent education-related problems that should be addressed first. There’s no point building a university, they say, when a mere 25 per cent of Nunavut children even graduate high school. As well, many graduates who do go on to university in the south ?often require extra courses to catch up.?

Statistics Canada figures show that, in that territory, only three percent of the population (aged 15 to 64) have earned a degree, diploma, or certificate from university?a total of just 455 people.

In Foreign News: Peru’s inflation rate a staggering 216 billion per cent

If you think the economic news is bad in Canada, try these numbers on for size: measured over the past 45 years, Brazil has an inflation rate of more than 14.21 quadrillion percent. It doesn’t sound any better expressed as 14,210 trillion or 14,210,480,006,034.800 per cent.

According to this Journal Peru article, the results come from a recent Bradesco study that looked at cost-of-living increases from 1961 to 2006. Among the top four countries were Argentina, Peru, and Uruguay, with Brazil leading the way for worldwide inflation rates. Following the launch of new initiatives in 1994, Brazil’s inflation has slowly decreased, sitting at only 3.14 per cent in 2006.

The astronomical figures for the 45-year period are mainly the result of hyperinflation that hit South American countries hard in the ?70s and ?80s. Octávio de Barros, Bradesco’s director for macroeconomic studies, reports that the numbers explain some of the reasons for ?the enormous economic and social abyss that persists in Brazil and the rest of Latin America.?

In the same 45-year period, the countries that ranked best for inflation rates were Norway at 916 per cent and Sweden at 922 per cent, with Australia and Denmark both scoring 1,018 per cent.

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