Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Africa, stop digging holes for the West

Mail&Guardian: For at least two generations, African leaders and policymakers have recoiled from the 300-year model of African natural-resource development. Simply put, the model was based on Africans, originally as slaves and later as paid porters, carrying ivory to the coast for ­Europeans and Asians to cut and process. The products may have changed, but not the model. Despite the fervent desire of African policymakers to add value to raw materials, whether it is copper, gold or coffee, it has simply never materialised. Yet despite this experience, the notion of adding value to raw materials remains an article of faith in Africa and almost all national and regional industrial policy statements make some mention of it...

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