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Teachers and supporters strike outside East High School on May 7, teachers to horrendous working conditions and expose students to overcrowded classrooms. to be written out of the script of a potentially radical democracy. . a rise in economic inequality, families unable to support themselves.

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White Paper by the Government of People's Republic of China - China-Africa Economic and Trade Cooperation "China is the largest developing country in the world, and Africa is home to the largest number of developing countries. Executive Summary. Destroying African Agriculture By Walden Bello - 7 June Biofuel production is certainly one of the culprits in the current global food crisis.

But while the diversion of corn from food to biofuel feedstock has been a factor in food prices shooting up, the more primordial problem has been the conversion of economies that are largely food-self-sufficient into chronic food importers. The plan to privatise the urban water supply system by March has become a defining battlefield. For the poor, the commercialisation of water, combined with lack of investment in the sector and regressive socio-economic distribution, is a key factor in their povertystriken situation.

At the heart of the issue are questions of need versus profit, and whether water is a right or a commodity. Kenya has embarked on privatisation without any discernible ideological reservations.

Adjustment in Africa: Lessons from Country Case Studies

Far from achieving the goal of good governance, privatisation so far has widened the gender gap, made water more expensive than oil and turned patients away from hospitals untreated. In fact, privatisation has spread economic risks throughout society while channelling economic gains to the few. The privatisation policy is only one aspect of the Structural Adjustment Plan.

Initially considered as a means to submit public companies to more rigorous management rules, today it is no more than an instrument to achieve the objective of budgetary balance and to have exceptional income to reduce the foreign debt and recover the confidence of capitalist partners. Health and education are undergoing an underhand process of liberalisation that will worsen social inequality rather than help provide access to services or ensure their efficiency.

While applying structural adjustment programmes in the mids the government designed and implemented a sweeping plan for the privatisation of public companies. Since , 27 public companies have effectively passed into private hands. The result has been the deterioration of the education system and the public health service, the degradation of food production and security, increased unemployment and the growth of exclusion and inequalities.

Liberalisation and privatisation policies, and the new terms of international trade, have had negative impact on the national economy and the socio-economic status of the population. The decline in public investment in services has reflected negatively on human development, as indicated by the decline in calorie intake and the increase of the population under the poverty line.

Reports from Kenya

While some businessmen and investors cite GDP growth and higher efficiency as positive results of liberalisation, civil society finds that economic reform measures have reduced government services in communities, increased individual costs for social services, and caused job losses. The results have been regressive, as a small minority have benefited while the majority have become further impoverished and disenfranchised.

From onwards, the government accelerated the process and started selling companies that were not losing money. Civil society has been unable to exert pressure on the government to prevent decisions being made contrary to the interests of the majority. Although in some areas such as telecommunications and electricity, the liberalisation has improved quality, in others, the improvement is hardly cosmetic. While most of the poor and rural population do not have access to basic services, for women in particular privatisation has increased their work load.

So that those excluded receive better basic services it is necessary to develop policy and regulatory mechanisms that reinvest the resources generated by privatisation in the social infrastructure. In addition to income deficiency, the poor lack access to adequate food, health and educational facilities, safe water, clothing and shelter.

While the average growth rate was well below the rate achieved by a handful of East Asian economies, it equalled or exceeded the growth rates attained by many developing countries in other regions. In particular there was a notable acceleration of growth in sub-Saharan Africa SSA 1 during the s table 1 , supported by a boom in commodity prices and foreign aid. Investment in many countries in the region exceeded 25 per cent of GDP, and the savings gap remained relatively moderate.

Economic performance deteriorated rapidly in SSA in the late s and early s, whereas the slowdown of growth was relatively moderate in North Africa. Unlike many countries in other developing regions which managed to restore growth after the lost decade of the s, stagnation and decline continued in SSA during the first half of the s due to a combination of adverse external developments, structural and institutional bottlenecks and Samir Amin, Maldevelopment - Anatomy of a global failure In this book it is proposed to analyse this failure of development from a political stand-point, for discussion of the options in the framework of macroeconomic schema provides no more than commonplace and foreseeable findings.

We must aim higher and integrate in the discussion all the economic, political, social and cultural facets of the problem and at the same time fit them into a local framework Africa that takes account of interaction on a world scale. We acknowledge that this aim comes up against major theoretical difficulties. Social reality as a whole has three facets: economic, political and cultural. The economic aspect is perhaps the best known. In this field, conventional economics has forged tools of immediate analysis and with greater or lesser success of management of an advanced capitalist society.


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Historical materialism has sought to plunge deeper and has often succeeded in illuminating the character and extent of social struggles underlying the economic choices. The field of power and politics is relatively less known; and eclecticism in the theories advanced shows the inadequate scientific mastery of the reality. Functional political thought, like its former or recent ingredients geopolitics, systems analysis, etc.

It is true that historical materialism provides a hypothesis as to the organic relationship between the material base and the political superstructure, and the hypothesis is fruitful if it is not too crudely interpreted. The Marxist schools, however, have not conceptualized the issue of power and politics modes of domination as they have the categories modes of production.

The propositions in this direction, by Freudian Marxists for example, have the undoubted merit of drawing attention to neglected aspects of the issue but have not yet produced an overall conceptual system. The field of politics lies virtually fallow. It is not by chance that the first chapter of Volume One of Capital includes the section entitled 'The Fetishism of Commodities and the Secret thereof. Marx intends to unveil the mysteries of capitalist society, and the reason why it appears to us as directly governed by economics, in the forefront of the social scene and the determinant of the other social dimensions that seem then to accommodate to its demands.

Economic alienation thus defines the essence of the ideology of capitalism. Conversely, pre-capitalist class societies are governed by politics, which takes the forefront of the stage and provide the constraints that other aspects of the social reality - including economic life-seem bound to obey. If a theory of these societies were to be written, the work would be entitled 'Power' instead of capital for the capitalist mode and the opening chapter would deal with 'the fetishism of power' instead of the fetishism of commodities.

Founou-Tchuigona eds. Industry helps promote growth at several levels. On the one hand, it provides the material, mechanical and chemical means to modernize the techniques used in stock-rearing and crop-growing. But through the employment it creates' it also determines, directly or indirectly, the number of agriculturally active workers, the productivity of the peasants' labour, their income level and, ultimately, the overall agricultural demand for consumer and capital goods.

Industry is the basis for the growth of an internal market, an indispensable element in the dynamic of development in which agricultural demand is a fundamental factor.

In Algeria, the farmers have very substantially improved their marginal income, more by employing the manpower resources of rural households and raising the price of agricultural products than by increasing the productivity of labour. The state, striving to intensify agriculture, has laid great stress on farming equipment, tractors' harvesters, crop treatment and irrigation techniques. This progress in equipment was supposed to promote the adoption and diffusion of new, more intensive production methods and to improve crop yields.

This increase in the capital provided by industry, however, was not by itself a sufficient factor in agricultural progress. Research in agronomy and the training and education system were not adequate to ensure renewal of production methods and improvement in the technical expertise of the peasants. Despite amelioration of the level of farm equipment, stock-rearing and crop-growing methods have barely evolved and yields have increased only slightly.

The relative costs of mechanization and other agricultural investment, in view of the productivity of the land, limit the use of more intensive techniques, methods of cultivation, fertilizers, weed killers, selected seeds, and so on. In this context, extensive systems have shown themselves to be more profitable for those enterprises that gear their production to this market than systems that make more use of modern production methods, at least in low to medium rainfall areas. The relative stagnation of yields results in a tendency towards more land and resources being used for stock-rearing.

This process is underpinned by a price system favourable to animal products and the high revenues expressing the associated demand. As a result, the price policy in force over the last decade to stimulate base production, wheat, milk, and vegetables, has proved powerless to reverse the tendencies observed in the structure of production.

Lamine Gakou - The crisis in African agriculture. The agricultural sectors and the rural areas are most often the ones most affected because of this integration. The case of agriculture, which, in most countries, is in crisis because it is essentially oriented towards the world market and not towards the feeding of the local people, shows that it is idle for the underdeveloped countries, and particularly for Africa, to seek solutions to their problems in the framework of a system whose modus operandi and rules of the game operate in such a way that it is always the poorest and economically weakest that suffer the most serious consequences of the crisis.

If the developed capitalist countries can make the underdeveloped countries bear at least a part of the burden of their own crisis, in these countries and in Africa in particular, the so-called 'non-modern', 'traditional' sectors, agriculture above all, bear more of the burden. Other explanations can be found for the crisis, but we feel that these explanations can be no more than secondary, the fundamental cause being the integration of Africa into a system over which it has absolutely no control. Even in the Sahelian region there are reports of granaries of cereals always full during the precolonial period despite the low level of development of productive forces.

But was it not this low level of development of productive forces that ultimately made Africa the victim of the capitalist mode of production? A brief look at the work of distinguished researchers who have studied precolonial African societies suggests that these societies were not adequately prepared to defeat the aggressions of capitalism despite great capacities for resistance often linked to very advanced levels of political and social organization.

The long era of domination that followed saw Africa drained of its human and material substance which was sucked out by the invaders. France and Britain, that is, with some encroachment by United States and Japan. This neo-colonial control has its reflection in the total lack of industrialization in the region. Since , when the Treaty of Rome was signed by the Western European countries, their relations with African countries were very well defined. History played a critical role in molding those relations. The EC vision was defined as "a natural partnership" with Africa, with specific aims: 1 build up a secure supply of raw materials, and 2 build up a secure market for European manufactured goods, and 3 with the help of the U.

The former EC utilized two instruments for doing that: trade preferences and direct aid, Okolo, Dependency in Africa: stages of African political economy.


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Coeur de Roy, The African challenge: internet, networking and connectivity activities in a developing environment F. Mayor, Africa and globalization: the challenges of democracy and governance. The challenges of globalisation for Africa Address by Alassane D. It is clear that the trend toward more integrated world markets has opened a wide potential for greater growth, and presents an unparalleled opportunity for developing countries to raise their living standards. At the same time, however, the Mexican crisis has focussed attention on the downside risks of this trend, and concerns have arisen about the risks of marginalization of countries.

All of this has given rise to a sense of misgiving, particularly among developing countries. So what is "globalization"? What are its implications for the conduct of economic policy, particularly in Africa? What are its potential benefits and risks? What will developing countries have to do to benefit from it, to avoid its downside risks? Is there any good reason to fear globalization? To answer these and other questions, it would be useful first to explain what globalization is, and what it is not, what has caused it, and what effects it has had.

Martin Robra, Watch out! Equity and Growth Through Economic Research, Foreign direct investment and its determinants in emerging economies , Equity and Growth Through Economic Research, Sustaining trade and exchange rate reform in Africa: lessons for macroeconomic management , Nadeau et al. Nordenserenj et al. Leymarie, Shock waves after Mobutu. Saumon, From state capitalism to neo-liberalism in Algeria: the case of a failing state S.

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Saumon, External domination via domestic states: the case of Francophone Africa S. Saumon, French neo-colonialism in Francophone Africa? The role of the state in processes of foreign domination K. Gernoth, Present threats to France's hegemonic role in Africa: neo-colonialism no longer in demand M. Cohen, Beyond the EMU: a problem of sustainability , Burkina Faso. Central Af. Congo, R. Cote d'Ivoire. From Chatham House- 30 September Somaliland: democracy threatened By Michael Walls Download Paper here Somaliland faces a critical constitutional and political dilemma that is the equal of pivotal points in its recent past: successful negotiation of that dilemma would mark a significant step forward in the evolution of the Somaliland political system, but failure with consequent instability and a more authoritarian governance system remains a distinct possibility.

Somaliland is one of the few secure and democratic territories in the Horn of Africa. The destabilising effect of a failure to successfully tackle the current crisis can only contribute to further deterioration in an already unstable part of the African continent. This article considers a key period in the establishment of the current system of state, from the collapse of the Siyaad Barre regime to the conference in the northern town of Borama which saw the transition from an interim military government to civilian administration.

While the Borama conference did not end conflict in Somaliland, it resulted in an interim constitution that eventually enabled a more lasting peace, along with popular elections for local government, President, and Lower House of Parliament. The article argues that the success of the —3 process was built on a set of deeply embedded social norms that emphasized the importance of dialogue between antagonists; a willingness to accept that the most complex grievances would be set aside indefinitely to avoid the contentious process of negotiating compensation payments; the opening of space for the intervention of mediators; and a sustained commitment to consensus building in preference to divisive voting.

In short, local resources have been employed effectively in the cause of achieving a lasting peace and what appears to be a viable system of democracy. Centre for Policy Studies The Centre for Policy Studies is an independent policy research institution that produces original and thought-provoking research on South Africa's, and the rest of Africa's policies, governance and democratisation challenges.

CPS is currently engaged in a major expansion programme with a strong emphasis on Africa. Over the next five years, - , CPS will focus on a clearly defined niche of policy, governance and democratisation. Its commitment to researching continental African challenges and disseminating them widely will be steadfast. The report examines how Africa can achieve growth rates necessary to attain the Millennium Development Goals.

It ranks African countries based on the performance of macroeconomic, poverty reduction, and institution building policies, using an ECA-designed Expanded Policy Stance Index. December ECA Prospectus Scoring African Leadership for Better Health Assessing Regional Integration in Africa July Public Sector Management Reforms in Africa Assessing Regional Integration in Africa The report provides a comprehensive evaluation of the state of Africa's integration process, showing where efforts have succeeded or failed including why intra African trade remains low; and how lack of macro-economic policy convergence and insufficient infrastructures hamper integration.

ECA Annual Report Poverty Mapping for Selected African Countries. April November October The Impact of Information and Communications Technology at the country level. PDF KB. Odedokun and Jeffery I. Round: Determinants of Income Inequality and its Effects on Economic Growth: Evidence from African Countries PDF KB The paper empirically investigates, in the context of African countries, the determinants of income distribution and inequality, the effect of inequality on economic growth, and the channels through which inequality affects growth.

More Discussion Papers. Morgan, and Juha I. The overarching goal of this programme is alleviation of poverty and mitigation of the adverse impacts of Structural Adjustment programmes SAPs.

Reports from Kenya

While the Government takes this programme as its blueprint for social development initiatives, not much is understood of the content and implementation strategies of this programme. A brief look at the country's performance in the immediate pre- adjustment decade and the decade of adjustment presents these economic and social indices:.

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Aid and Reform in Africa : Lessons from Ten Case Studies

Table 1: Economic Indicators. Rate of Inflation. Balance of Trade. Source: GoK From table 1 it can be seen that the real rate of growth in the pre-adjustment decade averaged 4.

Adjustment in Africa : lessons from country case studies

While inflation rate averaged The overall terms of trade deteriorated significantly as can be seen from the table. Important as they are, economic indicators are a bad measure of development. Social well being, environmental considerations as well as access to the society's wealth by a majority of the population are critical elements of the overall development package.

The following statistics give us a pointer to the effects of adjustment programs on some of them. Kenyans' daily calorie consumption per capita in was but had plummeted to by according to statistics from the African Development Bank, thanks to a decade of adjustment programs. In the period as adjustment policies were yet to be introduced in the agricultural sector, the average annual growth of food production was 7.

During the same period, per capita food production fell from 4. The trends in food production were of necessity reflected in food consumption. The growth in annual food consumption grew at marginal 0. In per capita terms, food consumption grew at an annual rate of 6. In the period , the annual growth rate in food self- sufficiency ratio was 1.

This trend was reversed in the period to register growth rate of 1. The foregoing is explainable chiefly on the shift to production for export which is the linchpin of adjustment policies on agriculture while food production is de-emphasised. It is equally explainable on the diminished purchasing power of most people as well as removal of subsidies on agricultural inputs. Cuts in government spending on such social services as education and health have had the effect of increasing the number of children who do not enrol at all as well as those who drop out of school system prematurely.

During the adjustment period, the rate of enrolment in both primary and secondary schools dropped quite significantly. While in the pre-adjustment decade school enrolment grew at a rate of 8. Secondary school enrolment witnessed a similar trend with enrolment growing at the rate of 9. This decline has begun to be witnessed in teacher training colleges where there had been a steady rise in enrolment from 8, in to 21, in but had declined to 19, in - a move the government itself attributes to SAPs GoK In terms of government spending in education, there has been a marked decrease from The introduction of user fees in medical care has meant death for many poor people that do not have the wherewithal to pay for these services.

This presents a double-edged sword: people who are by large ignorant of their health needs are denied access to affordable education which means the enhancement of ignorance and the inability to afford medical fee means inability to effectively take part in production. The government spending in health has significantly dropped since the introduction of SAPs. While in , 7.

It now stands at 5. There are six major intervention sites in the SDD strategies. Among themm, pro-poor labour intensive public investment programmes and increased private sector investment in the provision of social services. The struggle against poverty is essentially about empowerment of people living in poverty.

This is not a definition to be found in our government's policy documents. In the words of the United Nations Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali, social development should be understood in the broad sense implying progress towards higher living standards, greater equality of opportunity and securing certain basic human rights But there has been this aberration of seeing poor people as victims to be pitied and given handouts.

It should be recognised that poor people are part of the solution to the problem of poverty. Primarily, social development is the responsibility of the government. However, this is no justification for the government to exclude the poor from decisions and operations that address poverty. Of Kenya's total labour force of 9. The rest is either in the popular sector -erroneously referred to as informal sector- or regarded as unemployed. This is yet another misnomer. In its strictest sense, unemployment as a concept pertains only to industrialised countries, where a worker, supported by social security benefits, can afford to spend time unemployed.

In underdeveloped countries like ours, workers cannot afford that option. They always must work at anything they can do, no matter how unproductive, no matter how poorly paid UNDP The Government sees provision of menial jobs to the poor and the vulnerable as a way of fighting poverty. It identifies the construction of rural roads, agro-forestry, dams, irrigation and soil conservation, construction of rural schools and health centres, and residential housing GoK a: 21 as some of the areas that will provide pro-poor employment opportunities.

A number of questions arise from the Government approach:. While employment creation is important in tackling widespread poverty, labour intensive approach is definitely not the answer. Employment -conventional and in the popular sector- will definitely increase where there is qualitative and quantitative improvement in production of goods and services. It therefore calls upon NGOs to popularise simple, appropriate and socially acceptable technological innovations, fuse it with traditional coping mechanisms and base the same on available resources and real needs of the local communities.

In all this, NGOs should simply play a facilitating role. The communities, using their traditional structures should be the central actors. The Government expects the private sector to play a leading role in the delivery of the target social services. If our experience with private hospitals, private schools, private real estate developers is anything to go by, we can only wish the Government a lot of luck.

Quest for profit does not go hand in hand with public responsibility. Kenya's employment problem has grown to enormous proportions in the s - with unemployment and underemployment rampant both in the rural and urban areas. The country's labour force is currently estimated to be The development of productive employment, on the other hand, has not kept pace with the increased labour supply and since , with the introduction of SAPs, the employment rate has slowed while the labour growth has accelerated, further aggravating the employment crisis.

Significantly, women and youths in general constitute a higher proportion of the unemployment and underemployed especially in the rural areas. Currently more than 2 million people aged between years or roughly Of the employed, males work 9. In addressing this most intractable problem, the Kenyan government has committed itself at least on paper to a number of micro and macro economic policies aimed at creating employment opportunities and particularly targeting the poor and vulnerable groups.

Specifically, some of the measures in this regard include:. Available data indicate that average monthly household income to urban employees is Ksh 6, The government is committed to a number of fiscal, monetary and other policies aimed at creating adequate access to income-earning opportunities. These include:. Kenya has no strong national social security system, not even an unemployment compensation scheme. Recent economic policies in regard to social security rendering aim at protecting the most vulnerable from the declines of welfare particularly in relation to basic health care, education, food and nutrition.

The government is on paper committed to a broad range of reforms in the health and education sectors. Measures aimed at creating access to resources include:. Over the years, income distribution in Kenya has remained inequitable. There are glaring income gaps between and among rural and urban areas, wage differentials between sectors and earnings between different levels of education, etc.

Recent change such as the restructuring of the fiscal system from direct taxation to indirect taxation, subsidies to sectors of society adversely affected by SAPs e. However, the disparities are still great and will remain for a long time to come.

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For example, the distribution of benefits from better health and education in the previous years remain generally uneven and is largely related to income and locational differences. What should be emphasised is that the foregoing reflect governmental commitment at policy level. Implementation is another story. Several years of government economic mismanagement, inefficiencies, inadequate supportive environment for efficient operation of policies, among other factors lead to scepticism.

The policies summarised above are soundly-based, but sustained and across - the board implementation will be crucial if these are to be for the benefit of the poor, socially vulnerable or discriminated sectors. While there are no glaring discrimination against women in the country's labour legislation, a government task force on laws relating to women is currently in operation and aims at reviewing all laws as they affect women.

Also, there are no specific figures on the percentage of women in trade union governing bodies but the figure is undoubtedly very insignificant as women are generally not represented in these bodies. Kenya's economic model is a mixed market-oriented economy which is increasingly being liberalised and privatised. The effect of this has been the increasing domination of the economy by multinationals and foreign capital.