Sunday, October 04, 2015

Piketty on Africa

 Economist Thomas Piketty has warned that international aid could be "undermining" Africa as the continent struggles to lift millions out of poverty despite robust economic growth.

Piketty criticised international aid organisations for needlessly replicating government services, adding that African nations should also work to take more control of revenues created by their vast natural resources. International aid was "in some cases undermining the state building process," he told AFP in Johannesburg. "[Aid] is a way to deliver social services... without going through the public education or health system which, in the long run, is the most important."

"South Africa is one of the only countries where we actually have no data on the concentration of wealth, and how this has been changing since the fall of apartheid," said Piketty, a professor at the Paris School of Economics. "We have policies that have been put in place supposedly to spread the wealth -- there's a lot of suspicion this has not worked so well."

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