African business, politics and lifestyle
Does Africa need aid?
Rich countries look set to fall roughly $40 billion short of the amount they had pledged to give to Africa by 2010. So says a report released on Monday by the panel set up to monitor commitments made amid much fanfare at the Group of Eight summit in 2005.
The panel said G8 countries were not keeping their promises at the very moment rising food prices threaten to increase hunger and child mortality. The report also calls for a rethink of trade policies to help African countries and urges rich nations to spend more on renewable energy sources there.
But how important is aid for Africa?
Africa’s economies have been growing at their fastest in decades — the International Monetary Fund estimates African growth at well over 6 percent in 2007 and expects similar this year.
Not so long ago, net private capital flows to Africa were negligible or even negative.
But investment has soared, with China leading a rush to develop sources of raw materials. Globally, investors have been looking at Africa more seriously in the hope of potentially higher returns than in more developed markets that now face uncertainty.
Emergency aid has certainly helped to save lives during wars, famines and natural disasters, but has aid helped Africa overall? Has it held it back? Does Africa need aid now?
Have your say.