“Limitless development assistance to african governments has fostered dependency, encouraged corruption, and ultimately perpetuated poor governance and poverty. Europe should not provide aid to failed states.”
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The speaker in this quote is attempting to address the ill effects caused by economic and historical globalization associated with foreign trade. With economic globalization providing financial aid to African countries, the speaker fears the countries will not be able to progress on their own, resulting in them becoming completely reliant on the foreign country and unable to maintain a independently sustainable economy. The speaker likely values independence and has humanitarian ideals. The speaker would like to avoid dependency and any kind of aid demonstrating how he value sindependence. In the text, the speaker disapproves of corrupt governments and poor governance causing poverty showing how the speaker values the quality of life of the African people leading my to believe they have humanitarian ideals. It is possible that the speaker is not opposed to all foreign aid merely “limitless development assistance.” If there were limits in place to prevent or negate the effects of “dependency” and “corruption” then they may approve of Europe providing limited aid to “failed states”. This source brings to mind the question: to what extent should post-imperial countries in Europe be responsible for providing support for current development in africa. Critics foreign aid to africa would suggest that 1, 2, 3. Supporters of foreign aid to Africa would argue that aid improves healthcare, creates jobs, and improves education. After examining the various positions, it becomes clear that foreign aid from post-imperial countries can only be valuable so long as the recipient country can benefit through the reduction or elimination of poverty, inequality, illness, or unemployment. Canadians.
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Someone against Europe providing aid to Africa would likely argue that
BRIEF EXPLANATION OF ARGUMENTS
Foreign aid can cause dependency on the country providing aid. Dependency is caused when aid is used as a long-term strategy that consequently inhibits development, progress, or reform. Dependency inhibits a country from functioning independently and maintaining a sustainable economy. “Increasing dependency on aid imports disincentives local production by reducing market demand. This is compounded when declining aid is replaced with commercial imports rather than locally-sourced, either because of cheaper prices or a lack of recipient country production capacity because of long-term aid causing stagnation” (Shah, Anup. “Food Aid.” Food Aid – Global Issues. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Dec. 2016). An example of unhealthy dependency can be found in the situation of Haiti. Haiti is reliant on US imports for around 80% of grain stocks even after aid had ceased. In many cases, highly dependent countries can be forced into growing primarily cash crops instead more nutritious foods leaving the country more dependent on foreign countries to provide them with food. This was evidenced in the belgian Congo in the 1900’s with the forced production of rubber in that region. It is possible that foreign aid to african countries could lead to an unhealthy dependence on European countries that could be detrimental Africa.
Corruption is a major issue if many African countries that can inhibit the effectivity of foreign aid. Political corruption can prevent necessary funds from reaching the people that it is meant to help and has been considered “corrosive to the development of a state.” (Kaufmann 1997, p. 114). Funds are distributed by international sources to government officials who are meant to allocate the funds to the general public. Because of the country’s government acting as a middle man between the necessary funds and the people, foreign aid allocations are “ripe territory for corruption” (Tavares 2003, p. 100). Many economists, including Dambisa Moyo, believe that African governments should cut of foreign aid entirely. “By encouraging accountability to donors instead of citizens, foreign aid encourages graft and breaks the fundamental relationship between a state and its people.” The democratic Republic of the Congo, Chad, and Sierra Leone are on Transparency International’s top ten corruption list and still receive millions of dollars in aid. Many believe that reducing non-humanitarian aid could result in African governments increasing tax revenues and consequently increasing accountability between the country and the citizens.
Foreign aid can perpetuate conflict
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Someone in favour of Europe provide aid to Africa would likely argue that foreign aid could improve Africa’s healthcare, create jobs for youth, and improve the education.
With foreign aid from Europe, African healthcare could be drastically improved. Africa is home to 90% of the world’s HIV-positive children, is where more than 80% of the world’s cases of malaria occur, and has a maternal and infantile death rate of 50%. According to WHO, “of the 4 million extra health workers the world badly needs, at least 1 million are needed in Africa alone.” Even though many treatments for the diseases afflicting people are safe and readily available in most countries, many people still do not receive adequate health care or treatment for their ailments. Possible reasons for the lack of progress on this issue include price sensitivity, a lack of information or trust, and unreliable health service delivery to less developed areas. Many financially unstable societies may not be able to tackle large, chronic illnesses due to a lack of educated individuals, adequate finances, or various other factors. Europe’s comparatively advanced healthcare and the relatively stable economy could provide financial and medical support that could facilitate the production of public medical centres, help finance and enable the education of individuals on human health and promote accessible vaccinations and/or treatments for diseases. In 1990, around 12 million children below the age of 5 died, but because of an increase in funding for health care by the United States and Europe, this number dropped to 7.6 million. Between 2004 and 2010, malaria deaths decreased from around 1 million for around 700 000.
Foreign aid can lead to industrial development creating jobs and improving infrastructure. According to Tony Elumelu, a Nigerian economist, “Youth unemployment is Africa’s greatest challenge.” Africa has one of the world’s fastest growing populations with it expanding by nearly 20 million people every year. To prevent the unemployment rate from rising, jobs must be created quickly. Failure to produce sufficient jobs for young, urbanized populations can lead to a deterioration of a country’s political and economic stability. Long term investments in the private sector, infrastructure and manufacturing industries as well as in agriculture by European countries could help create employment opportunities for African people. “Private sector can increase investment in Africa. When we invest, we create economic opportunities for people through the value chains such as paying tax… The private sector can help encourage young African entrepreneurs by giving them support from the start of their business until they are able to go out there and grow it on their own.” By increasing funding to the private sector as well as to other african companies, the issue of unemployed youth and by extension poverty can be addressed. By increasing the job opportunities, the african economy is given the opportunity to grow translating to reductions in poverty and increased revenues for the government in the form of income taxes. With foreign aid providing financial support, new jobs can be created for African youth.
Foreign aid can help to improve the education systems of developing countries. Regionally, sub-Saharan Africa faces the largest out-of-school rates, with 21.2% of primary, 34.1% of lower secondary, and 57.7% of upper secondary school-aged children out of school. By providing financial aid to developing African countries, most schools could be built and the government may even be able to establish a free or cheap education system for all citizens. Increasing the number of educated individuals can help make the country more independent and aids in the country’s industrialization. In Kenya, the government introduced a free and compulsory education to all Kenyans in 2002. Since then, Kenya has been receiving financial aid from European countries and the United States to continue to provide free education to its citizens. The increase of educated individuals in Kenya resulted in an increase in the human capital in the country which could then be harnessed to continue industrialization of the country and enabled.
After examining the various positions, it becomes clear that European countries should provide aid to Africa as long as the recipient country can benefit through the reduction or elimination of poverty, inequality, illness, or unemployment. While excessive foreign aid can lead to unhealthy dependency, it is not something that is guaranteed to occur. If done properly, European aid can be incredibly beneficial to Africa. Even though corruption is a serious issue in many African countries, if the resources being provided to the country are being properly monitored, the resources could be dispersed to the people and improve their lives.
Aid from Europe could help reduce or eliminate various illnesses plaguing Africa and elongate and improve the lives of many Africans. In addition to improving the healthcare, Aid can also create many jobs for the youth that can help in the reduction of poverty and improvement of the quality life of African people. Foreign aid can also improve the education of individuals in African countries which increases the human capital.
Therefore, the best approach to this issue would be to allow Europe to provide aid to Africa as long as the resources being sent are limited and their use monitored. Foreign aid can encourage many positive developments in developing countries including improved health care,more jobs for youth, and better education. But in order to achieve these positive outcomes, the possible negatives of foreign aid must be addressed and negatated. Corruption and dependency are major factors that can have negative effects on a country’s development. Corruption can be very difficult to determine and it can easily occur without the donor country’s knowledge. In order to prevent this issue measures should be put in place to determine where the resources are going and how they are being used. While it is important for the donor country to be aware of where the resources are going, the country should not be completely in control of how the resources are spent as that could prevent a developing country from ever becoming independent. There should also be limits put on the amount of resources that a country can obtain through foreign aid. Providing too much aid can “foster dependency” which prevents a country from functioning independently. By limiting but not removing all aid, the developing countries in africa can receive necessary resources with minimal negative consequence. “Aid should not be considered as a principal factor for development; rather it should only be regarded as a necessary complement to the domestic efforts nurtured by culture of self-reliance and hard work, because aid cannot be depended upon indefinitely.” (Rena 2008). Aid can be incredibly beneficial if it is provided under the right circumstances. It need to be primarily concentrated on countries with good macroeconomic policies and uncorrupt governments committed to improving the lives of citizens.
European countries should provide aid to Africa as long as the recipient country can benefit through the reduction or elimination of poverty, inequality, illness, or unemployment.
Through my analysis of the different perspectives, I found that possible arguments of critics of foreign aid to Africa include that they are 1, 2, 3. Supporters of foreign aid to Africa would argue that aid improves healthcare, creates jobs, and improves education. After analyzing the two positions, I concluded that the European countries should provide aid to Africa as long as the recipient country can benefit through the reduction or elimination of poverty, inequality, illness, or unemployment.