News

    Development Advocates Urge G20 to Make Good on Aid Promises

    The Group of 20 leading industrialized nations are scheduled to hold their annual meeting this weekend in Toronto, Canada.  Ahead of the summit, development advocates say the G20 has made "shockingly little progress" on its commitments to the developing world.

    The leaders of the world's 20 most important economies say they hope their summit will solidify the global economic recovery.  

    But Falu Njie of the United Nations Millennium Campaign warns that the crisis is far from over for much of the world.

    "Of course, they are saying now that recovery is in the making.  But this is mainly in developed countries," said Njie.  "Developing countries have had serious problems and this needs to be recognized."

    Njie was one of several development experts who spoke in a conference call sponsored by the Jubilee USA Network, an organization that advocates debt forgiveness for developing nations.

    A report by Jubilee USA says that only about half of the $50 billion that the G20 has promised to the world's poorest countries has been delivered.  The advocacy group compares that to the hundreds of billions of dollars that went to bailing out corporations in the financial crisis.

    Briggs Bomba of the human rights organization Africa Action warned that there could be a new debt crisis if new G20 aid is in the form of loans through the International Monetary Fund, or IMF, rather than grants.

    "We continue to see the IMF operating from the old paradigm from conditionalities that again have had a devastating effect on the continent in terms of development and economic progress," said Bomba.

    Bomba said debt relief efforts of the past have made progress possible in Africa.  He cited an expansion of free primary and secondary education in Kenya and Zambia's cancelation of user fees at health facilities that enable poor communities to receive treatment.

    Now, he said, that progress is at risk.

    "The new cycle of indebtedness that is coming in threatens to wipe out the gains that we saw with debt relief and create new unsustainable debt," he said.

    Bomba said G20 leaders have an obligation to help Africa because it is suffering from a crisis that originated in developed world.

    But Marian Tupy, an analyst at the Cato Institute research group here in Washington, says that with G20 governments facing their own fiscal problems, it is unlikely they will promise new aid money in the near-term.

    He said that previous aid to Africa has been a failure.

    "It has, of course, led to a massive almost unimaginable amount of corruption," he said.  "And it has also led to white elephant projects [i.e., projects of little value], waste of money and dislocation on the African continent."

    Tupy says the best the G20 countries can do for Africa is to stop subsidizing their own farmers so that African farmers can compete on the world market.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolatei
    X
    July 29, 2016 4:02 PM
    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolate

    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Tesla Opens Battery-Producing Gigafactory

    Two years after starting to produce electric cars, U.S. car maker Tesla Motors has opened the first part of its huge battery manufacturing plant, which will eventually cover more than a square kilometer. Situated close to Reno, Nevada, the so-called Gigafactory will eventually produce more lithium-ion batteries than were made worldwide in 2013. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Polio-affected Afghan Student Fulfilling Her Dreams in America

    Afghanistan is one of only two countries in the world where children still get infected by polio. The other is Pakistan. Mahbooba Akhtarzada who is from Afghanistan, was disabled by polio, but has managed to overcome the obstacles caused by this crippling disease. VOA's Zheela Nasari caught up with Akhtarzada and brings us this report narrated by Bronwyn Benito.
    Video

    Video Hillary Clinton Promises to Build a 'Better Tomorrow'

    Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton urged voters Thursday not to give in to the politics of fear. She vowed to unite the country and move it forward if elected in November. Clinton formally accepted the Democratic Party's nomination at its national convention in Philadelphia. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more.
    Video

    Video Trump Tones Down Praise for Russia

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is toning down his compliments for Russia and Vladimir Putin as such rhetoric got him in trouble recently. After calling on Russia to find 30.000 missing emails from rival Hillary Clinton, Trump told reporters he doesn't know Putin and never called him a great leader, just one who's better than President Barack Obama. Putin has welcomed Trump's overtures, but, as Zlatica Hoke reports, ordinary Russians say they are not putting much faith in Trump.
    Video

    Video Uganda Unveils its First Solar-powered Bus

    A solar-powered bus described by its Ugandan makers as the first in Africa has made its public debut. Kiira Motors' electric bus, Kayoola, displayed recently at a stadium in Uganda's capital. From Kampala, Maurice Magorane filed this report narrated by Salem Solomon.
    Video

    Video Silicon Valley: More Than A Place, It's a Culture

    Silicon Valley is a technology powerhouse and a place that companies such as Google, Facebook and Apple call home. It is a region in northern California that stretches from San Francisco to San Jose. But, more than that, it's known for its startup culture. VOA's Elizabeth Lee went inside one company to find out what it's like to work in a startup.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora