whatcha bet kagame's been reading dambisa moyo?
Funny how Kagame apparently came around to this view after his Western donors clued into his shenanigans in the DRC and threatened to cut foreign aid:
Rwandan President Paul Kagame has praised the way China does business in Africa, criticising the West for basing relations with the continent on aid.The thing is, Kagame's kindof right. Sure, the Chinese don't care how many human rights violations cooperative African governments have committed, or how many tons of minerals they've stolen from their neighbors, or how many donors they've duped. And the Chinese don't really bring jobs to African states since they mostly bring their own workers along to complete massive infrastructure projects, creating resentment among locals who can't find jobs in the formal sector because there aren't any.
Huge Chinese investment in African companies and infrastructure is helping Africa develop, Mr Kagame said.
...Speaking to a German newspaper, Mr Kagame - seen in the West as one of Africa's more dynamic leaders - was as critical of the West as he was generous in praise of China.
"The Chinese bring what Africa needs: investment and money for governments and companies," he told business newspaper Handelsblatt.
"China is investing in infrastructure and building roads," he said, adding that European and American involvement "has not brought Africa forward".
..."I would prefer the Western world to invest in Africa rather than handing out development aid."
But building roads and hospitals and shiny new parliament buildings is a real service. It makes economic development more possible, it makes the population healthier, and it sure as heck doesn't lead to billions of dollars of aid wasted on poorly conceived projects like providing camcorders for Congolese rape victims and building fish freezing plants to feed people who don't eat fish. It still creates dependency and gives China access to natural resources at prices one suspects are lower than market value, but it does help.
Let's start a pool. How long before there's a direct Kigali-Guangzhou flight to cut down on travel time for all those Chinese tarmac pourers? I'll take 2 years.