Nowadays, African countries are wooed because they are perceived as the spearheads of the world economy. The Economist, the English weekly newspaper, predicts that in the next five years, seven out of ten fastest growing economies in the world will be in Africa: Ethiopia (8.1 per cent), Mozambique (7.7 per cent), Tanzania (7.2 per cent), Congo (7.0 per cent), Ghana (7.0 per … [Read more...] about Liberating Africans from the CFA “franc” trap
DAKAR – France is wrestling with a burden of debts and public deficits that led Standard & Poor’s recently to downgrade its credit rating. Even as the risk of recession looms, the country has been forced to implement a drastic austerity program. But France’s woes are also being felt far beyond its borders, sparking rumors of a possible devaluation of the CFA … [Read more...] about Decolonizing the Franc Zone
Humboldt University Economic Forum Berlin, 11 May 2011 I. INTRODUCTION After four decades of sluggish economic activities, improved macroeconomic conditions, better business climate, political and currency stability, and a burgeoning middle class have triggered economic growth in many African countries. Telecom, banking, and retail are flourishing. Construction is … [Read more...] about Africa : Economic growth and sustainability
DAKAR – How did Ivory Coast come to this? After gaining independence from France in 1960 with Felix Houphouet-Boigny as President, the country became the world’s largest exporter of cocoa beans and a significant exporter of coffee and palm oil. Throughout the 1960’s and 1970’s, sizeable export earnings, combined with easy access to credit, fueled an economic surge dubbed the … [Read more...] about Africa’s Winds of Change Return
China’s burgeoning relationship with Africa is being decried in some quarters, including western observers – and some Africans, too – as a new form of colonialism. Such criticism is largely misplaced. First, after having preached the globalisation tenet of economic liberalisation and free competition, the West cannot really grumble about being outbid by China in the race for … [Read more...] about QUESTIONS ON THE FUTURE OF CHINA-AFRICA COOPERATION
Oxford University China-Africa Network The Oxford University China-Africa Network (OUCAN) with the support of the Economic & Social Research Council (ESRC) present The Conference on "Chinese Investment and African Agency" hosted by the Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Oxford 11-12 March 2011 Regulating China-Africa cooperation … [Read more...] about Regulating China-Africa cooperation imbalances
In 2002 Côte d’Ivoire was rocked by a rebel uprising that partitioned the country into two parts, with the government led by President Laurent Gbagbo controlling the south, the rebels the north and the French army camping between the two. As a member of the Security Council, France managed to give this intervention the stamp of international approval under a UN mandate. In … [Read more...] about Stakeholders in the Côte d’Ivoire crisis
The year 2010 will mark the 50th anniversary of independence of most African countries. But is there much to celebrate? Economic situation has been improving in recent years – mostly in Eastern and Southern Africa, where economic integration is proceeding within the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC). … [Read more...] about Africa’s two-tier economy
DAKAR – Sub-Saharan African is in the grip of currency-union mania. Regional groups of countries in eastern, southern, and western Africa are all giving priority to the idea of creating a monetary union. But haven’t we heard this all before in Africa? Indeed, today’s enthusiasm for currency unions ignores the poor track record of previous attempts on the continent to … [Read more...] about Africa’s Misplaced Monetary Ambitions
As the former French colonies of Africa head to Nice to celebrate the 25th France-Africa Summit at the end of May, Sanou Mbaye questions the enduring legacy they’re honouring. Following decades of political and economic tyranny forged by French politicians, the citizens of former colonies continue to absorb the impact of chaotic and ruinous policies left over from their … [Read more...] about France-Africa leaders’ festivities : What to celebrate ?
DAKAR – This month, Africa’s Francophone countries will mark the 50th anniversary of their independence, and of the ties they maintain with France. But is there much to celebrate? Even before French President Charles de Gaulle took office in 1958, he foresaw the wave of revolutionary nationalism that would soon sweep across Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East. … [Read more...] about Françafrique at 50
Background The yearning for regional cooperation and economic integration in Africa was born in the United States within the pan-African movement in the 19th Century and has been kept alive ever since among the masses, the elite and the members of the Diaspora. This hope is so compelling that all African leaders have felt obliged to put it heartedly or opportunistically on … [Read more...] about The African Union : A need to go back to the drawing board
Background The yearning for regional cooperation and economic integration in Africa was born in the United States within the pan-African movement in the 19th Century and has been kept alive ever since among the masses, the elite and the members of the Diaspora. This hope is so compelling that all African leaders have felt obliged to put it heartedly or lukewarmly on their … [Read more...] about How best can the EU support the new AU Key Questions for Contact Person
NEPAD, the last plan to kick-start Africa's economic development adopted by the OAU in Lusaka (Zambia) on July, 11, 2001, is articulated around investment in the key sectors of infrastructure, agriculture, health and education. The plan is to be financed by the international community and through private capital flows, mainly from the multinationals. In choosing this way of … [Read more...] about NEPAD : the wrong plan ?
The Heads of African States, some of whom would not hesitate to shun an OAU meeting but would rush to meet the French President at the bi-annual gathering, display everlasting dependence whose foundations are made up of a scar and a web. Nothing illustrates better the incapacity of Francophone African leaders to break away from the former coloniser than the declaration, in … [Read more...] about Franc Zone must go