Creating Prosperity In Africa

Creating Prosperity In Africa

by Eugene Nyambal


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Creating Prosperity In Africa by Eugene Nyambal

Promote a new social contract based on the ability of leadership to improve the general welfare of society

Provide more legitimacy to the creation of wealth and facilitate, beyond sports and music, the rise of new role models whose leadership and contribution to the advancement of society can become an inspiring force for the youth

Reform the education system, so as to eradicate illiteracy and spread know-how and values necessary for a successful market economy

Reinforce the strategic capabilities of the state, strengthen institutions underpinning the well functioning market economy, and decentralize power

Foster regional integration to create larger markets for the development of industries and investment

Promote longer-term population growth policies by among others, forcefully fighting pandemics such as HIV-AIDS and malaria, as well as malnutrition

Set an ambitious development vision and benchmark competition in the implementation of reforms in areas such as business environment, infrastructure, labor productivity, and set up Free Processing Zones to gain access to international markets

Create an enabling environment to attract mature technologies in Africa and encourage domestic use of technology

Shift IMF and World Bank policies toward promoting growth and employment and encourage the most promising African countries to exit from IMF lending

Stop providing sustained financial assistance to governments with an established track record of corruption and to regimes that have failed over an extended period of time to improve the standard of living of their populations.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781592991846
Publisher: Inkwater Press
Publication date: 01/30/2006
Pages: 192
Product dimensions: 6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 0.41(d)

Read an Excerpt

Africa has made an unprecedented U-turn over the last five decades, moving from the fight for independence and liberty to the struggle for debt forgiveness and survival. The main objective of this book is to understand how we got there and to explore new avenues for Africa�s renaissance. It also seeks to help establish a new social contract both within Africa and with the international community around the need to improve living conditions of African populations.

I deliberately chose to leave the intellectual comfort of my professional environment throughout this work. With this in mind, I took the development challenge from its historical perspective by questioning the experience of advanced countries and the current expansion of China. The objective was to compare these success stories with the recent initiatives aimed at fostering Africa�s development, including the NEPAD and the HIPC Initiative. I came to the conclusion that to create wealth in Africa, sweeping paradigm changes are needed. Africans must take the lead in changing their destiny and abandon the spirit of dependency.

I have organized the response to the challenges facing Africa�s renaissance around eight chapters. In the first chapter, I tried to better understand the external environment shaping the fate of African nations. This chapter explores the dynamics of globalization and the reasons why Africa is not sufficiently integrated with the rest of the world.

In the second chapter, I made the assumption that economic development is more of a political and cultural process than an economic and technological one. This is because institutions are critical for economic development and their quality and effectiveness reflect the social, cultural and political setting underpinning the social contract. In rich countries, the social contract aims at improving the welfare of society and consequently, the institutional framework tends to thrive for economic progress. In low-income countries, the social contract and the related institutional framework are geared toward maintaining the status-quo to the benefit of a few.

With this in mind, I tried to examine over a long period of time the reasons why some nations are rich and others are poor and, more importantly, why Africa was left behind.

In the third chapter, taking into consideration the important role of institutions in economic development and the rise of stateless and weak state countries in Africa, I tried to study the type of state advanced countries had in place at the early stage of their development process. My main objective was to fully understand whether the reform process being promoted in Africa was headed in the right direction and what kind of state organization is needed for economic and technological development.

The fourth and the fifth chapters are based on my experience that taught me that the creation of wealth depends mostly on the size of the market, in terms of level of incomes or population and access to international markets. Indeed, big markets help deploy innovative technologies and make more profitable investments. This does not mean that smaller economies cannot succeed. They simply face more hurdles. I came to the conclusion that regional integration represents the only option for Africa to become a viable market in the near future.

In chapter 5, I noted that population growth and demographic density were key engines for economic growth in most advanced nations. Demographic transition was the result, not the trigger of economic development. Thus, birth control policies being recommended to foster Africa�s economic growth have no historical basis, especially at this critical juncture where HIV, malaria and other pandemics are weakening the long-term demographic growth of the continent. If Africa is to play a key role as a civilization and compete with other continents, it should also develop a long-term policy to reduce mortality and foster population growth.

In the sixth chapter, my fundamental assumption was that technological and industrial advance is critical for economic growth and poverty alleviation. On this basis, I tried to understand how advanced economies have created large corporations and how they were able to dominate science and technology. The fundamental quest was to find out whether they applied the policies currently preached by the "Washington Consensus". Thus, I reviewed the historical experiment of England and the United States during the first two industrial revolutions and the model of technological and industrial learning of Japan and South Korea. To prove that Africa can succeed, I introduced the case of Mauritius which shows that countries with significant ambition, organization and discipline can leapfrog.

In the seventh chapter, considering the decisive role of donors in Africa�s destiny, I tried to explain the role of international financial institutions. I also assessed their performance and reviewed options to improve the effectiveness of official development assistance. More specifically, I recommended that the World Bank and the IMF change their modus operandi to put more emphasis on promoting strong and sustainable economic growth in the fight against poverty. I also underlined the need for some African countries to prepare an exit strategy from adjustment lending to have more maneuvering room in the management of their economies.

In the eighth chapter, I tackled the problem of leadership, an essential element for implementing the changes needed. In the new social contract, leaders� legitimacy should be based on their ability to improve the welfare of society. In this context, I discussed the challenges and qualities needed to exercise leadership in an environment dominated by mass poverty, ethnic divides, huge economic and technological changes and limited sovereignty. I also examined some case studies to show how good leaders can change the fate of their nations. Through Nelson Mandela�s case, I tried to illustrate the qualities required to lead in a hostile environment. The cases of Doctor Mahathir Mohammad of Malaysia and Lee Kuan Yew, the founder of Singapore, help illustrate how "enlightened despots" have built prosperous nations in a context of ethnic diversity, for the former, and lack of natural resources for the latter.

I concluded by presenting ten of the most compelling solutions to get Africa out of poverty.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Africa in the Global Economy
What is globalization?
What are the foundations of globalization?
How is Africa integrated into the world economy?
Why Africa did not benefit from globalization?
Domestic barriers to trade and investment
Foreign barriers to trade and investment
Why do foreign investors come into a country?
What lessons for Africa?
Chapter 2: Why was Africa Left Behind?
The ingredients of successful nations
Why did Europe conquer the rest of the world?
Why America remains the largest wealth-creating machine
Why did Japan escape from western domination?
The plagues of countries that failed
Why did China fail against Europe?
Why didn�t Latin America make significant progress?
Seven Obstacles to Africa�s development
Africa cannot project itself as a distinct cultural entity
A dependent spirit incompatible with development
The political and social culture is not geared towards the
creation of wealth
Ethnocentrism against the social contract
Poor reckoning of knowledge and innovation
Africa has refused to master space and time
The spirit of superstition and fatalism is widespread
Implications for Africa
Key Message
Chapter 3: Reinventing the State
Reasons for the weakening of the State
Why did the State fail in Africa?
What type of State is needed for development?
Neither minimalist State nor omnipotent State
A State capable of spurring development
The State as supplier of public goods
The State as facilitator
The State as strategic coordinator
How should the State be reorganized in Africa?
Strengthening the State�s strategic capabilities
Improving the efficacy of civil service
Decentralize power to citizens
Key Message
Chapter 4: Regional Integration: A Key For Globalization
What are the benefits of Regional Integration?
How did integration help the United States and Western
What are the challenges of the African Union?
How to successfully attain regional integration?
Key Message
Chapter 5: More People, More Development
Population growth: A key for economic growth
The West and the demographic dividend
The 21st Century will be Asian
High population density has a positive impact on economic
Demographic transition is a result of economic development
Africa is the least populous continent
Key Message
Chapter 6: Promoting Competitive Industries
The economic and technological stalemate of AfricaBefore independence
Since independence
In the midst of crisis
Shortcomings of the Washington Consensus
How did rich countries become industrialized?
The British technological pioneer
The American model or the advent of the large modern
The Japanese Challenger: a model of technological learning
A strategic ambition to modernize
A strong institutional and social network
Innovative corporations
How did Japan conquer the information technology industry?
The rise of the Korean Dragon
How did South Korea enter into the Electronics industry?
How did South Korea master the technology of High-Speed Train (HST)?
The industrial transformation of Mauritius
Why did Mauritius succeed?
What lessons for Africa?
What options for Africa�s industrial development?
Key Message
Chapter 7: Reforming Development Assistance
The main players in development assistance
Development Assistance did not deliver
Why did development assistance fail to deliver?
Aid flow went abroad...
Recipient countries were against development...
International Financial Institutions had conflicting missions
How to get out of this deadlock?
Some countries should exit from IMF adjustment
World Bank should focus on promoting growth
Five pillars for economic growth
How can Europe better help Africa?
Key Message
Chapter 8: Leadership for Development
Promoting a new leadership
Historical examples of leadership
Nelson Mandela: the apostle of freedom and reconciliation in
South Africa
Mahathir Bin Mohamed: the father of modern Malaysia
Lee Kuan Yew: the Founding Father of Singapore
Implications for leadership in Africa
Key Message
Conclusion: Ten Keys to Get Out of Poverty
About the Author

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