Tag: Odious Debts

Chopsticks mercantilism: China’s involvement in Africa

(February 15, 2010) China’s engagement with Africa should be a boon. Its overall trade with Africa rose from $10.6 billion in 2000 to $75.5 billion in 2008, propelling Africa’s growth rate to 5.8% in 2008, its best performance since 1974. China is now Africa’s second-largest trading partner after the United States, importing a third of its crude oil from Africa…But China’s engagement is increasingly being seen as odious, predatory and brutish. The initial enthusiasm that greeted Chinese investments in Africa has now cooled.

The betrayal of Haiti

(January 22, 2010) Beyond the recent earthquake, there is another crisis at the heart of Haiti. Author Gerald Caplan calls the island state the perfect Carribbean example of a historic collusion between despots and Western donors, overseen by the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, to “enrich themselves at the expense of the people.”

What was going on in Haiti prior to the earthquake?

(January 17, 2010) Between 45,000-50,000 may have died in the impoverished country of Haiti according to the American Red Cross as a result of the earthquake that shook Port-Au-Prince and surrounding areas on January 12, 2010. A hospital collapses, the President’s palace is left in ruins, and many homes in shambles. Haitians bloodied from the devistation have walked away with tears in their eyes while others lay on the ground struggling to live or dead. This is what we see on the surface, but what is really going on behind the scenes of this catastrophe? What events were ongoing in Haiti prior to the earthquake?

Kenyan author demands forensic audits of country’s debts, speaks out about country’s odious debts

(January 6, 2010) Kenyan taxpayers should not have to repay the odious debts incurred by post-independence governments that borrowed money in their name but used the funds to terrorize citizens or were involved with corruption-tainted deals such as Anglo Leasing, writes prominent author Okiya Omtatah Okoiti in a recent op-ed. Using limited funds collected through taxation to repay odious debts incurred by the colonial, Kenyatta, Moi and Kibaki administrations, he writes, must come to an end.

Cancellation of odious debts an issue in upcoming Philippine presidential race

(January 5, 2010) Research organization Ibon Foundation is urging candidates in the upcoming presidential election to make public their stand on the repeal of automatic debt servicing; cancellation of odious debt; increased allocation and spending for health, education, and housing; and reversing trade liberalization, improving collection efficiency, and addressing bureaucratic corruption and wastage to raise badly needed revenues instead of imposing new taxes such as the tax on text messaging.

Breaking the myth of aid. Dambisa Moyo’s remedies

(September 30, 2009) Aid, argues Dambisa Moyo, does not eradicate some of Africa’s first rank scourges such as civil wars and corruption. Quite the reverse: development aid encourages corruption and allows some regimes to stay in place artificially. Because of the significant amounts that aid invests, it triggers envy and can stir up ethnic tensions, which sometimes lead to civil wars.

Interview with Dambisa Moyo

(July 20, 2009) Dambisa Moyo, economist and author of Dead Aid, discussing problems of foreign aid to the developing world. Moyo believes that pouring more aid into the coffers of African governments will do nothing to promote healthy economic growth. Instead, she calls for an opening of global trade, lower tariffs and a functioning tax system.