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How Africa’s wealthiest nation is spiralling out of control - The Globe and Mail
How Africa’s wealthiest nation is spiralling out of control Add to ...
JOHANNESBURG — The Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, Apr. 16 2014

Africa’s biggest and wealthiest country is being torn apart by a violent insurgency. Its government has repeatedly failed to control the threat, and its deadly revenge attacks by murderous soldiers are turning the crisis into a far worse disaster.

This is the deteriorating situation in Nigeria, newly crowned as Africa’s richest country (and the 26th biggest economy in the world) after a revision of its economic data this month. With its oil wealth and the biggest population on the continent, Nigeria should be capitalizing on Africa’s economic boom. Instead its future is in jeopardy.
Nigeria  Africa  Geoffrey_York  insurgencies  Boko_Haram 
may 2014 by jerryking
Assassination in Africa: Inside the plots to kill Rwanda’s dissidents - The Globe and Mail
PRETORIA and BRUSSELS — The Globe and Mail
Published Friday, May. 02 2014
Geoffrey_York  Africa  Rwanda  assassinations  dissension  targeted_assassinations 
may 2014 by jerryking
On a milestone of misrule, Mugabe fumes as Zimbabwe falls apart
Apr. 21 2014 | G&M | GEOFFREY YORK.

Mr. Mugabe’s rule is unchallenged these days, after a landslide victory in a 2013 election that was widely seen as tainted and rigged. But while he dominates the country, the Zimbabwean economy is continuing to slide towards disaster – even though Western sanctions on the Mugabe regime have been largely eliminated.

Consumer spending fell by 30 per cent in February (the most recent data available); government revenue dropped by 10 per cent in the same month; civil-service wages have been delayed because the government cannot pay them; and dozens of factories have shut down in recent months, eliminating more than 9,000 jobs at a time when unemployment is already estimated at about 60 per cent...Just 14 years ago, Zimbabwe was one of the wealthiest economies in Africa. Today it has fallen into the bottom half of the continent’s economies. Mr. Mugabe’s misrule has cost Zimbabwe about $96-billion (U.S.) in those 14 years, according to an analyst at the U.S.-based Centre for Global Development. The country’s GDP would be more than twice as big today if it had followed the growth pattern of neighboring Zambia in that period, he noted.

“Mugabe has the ignominious distinction of being the only African head-of-state to preside over an average decline in both economic output and life expectancy since 1980,”
Zimbabwe  Robert_Mugabe  Geoffrey_York  indigenization  tyrants  misrule  misgovernance  mismanagement  poor_governance  decline  GDP  life_expectancy 
april 2014 by jerryking
In South Africa, ‘a lot to be grateful for’ - The Globe and Mail

SOWETO, SOUTH AFRICA — The Globe and Mail

Published Friday, Dec. 06 2013

The government announced on Friday that Mr. Mandela will be laid to rest on Dec. 15 in his childhood village of Qunu, in the beautiful rolling hills of the Eastern Cape. A huge memorial service will be held on Tuesday at a 95,000-seat soccer stadium on the edge of Johannesburg. Then his body will lie in state for three days at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, so that hundreds of thousands of South Africans can bid him farewell before the state funeral.
Nelson_Mandela  South_Africa  memorials  obituaries  Geoffrey_York  Soweto 
december 2013 by jerryking
Mugabe skirts Zimbabwean parliament, calls election - The Globe and Mail

JOHANNESBURG — The Globe and Mail

Last updated Thursday, Jun. 13 2013
Robert_Mugabe  Zimbabwe  tyrants  Geoffrey_York 
june 2013 by jerryking
Priceless manuscripts missing in Timbuktu - The Globe and Mail

JOHANNESBURG — The Globe and Mail

Published Monday, Jan. 28 2013
Timbuktu  Mali  Geoffrey_York 
january 2013 by jerryking
The secret race to save Timbuktu’s manuscripts - The Globe and Mail
Dec. 27 2012 | The Globe and Mail | GEOFFREY YORK.

Timbuktu’s greatest cultural treasure: its ancient scholarly manuscripts, are under threat from Radical Islamist rebels who have repeatedly attacked the fabled city’s heritage, taking pickaxes to the tombs of local saints and smashing down a door in a 15th century mosque and demolishing mausoleums...Timbuktu’s most priceless remaining legacy is its vast libraries of crumbling Arabic and African manuscripts, written in ornate calligraphy over the past eight centuries, proof of a historic African intellectual tradition. Some experts consider them as significant as the Dead Sea Scrolls – and an implicit rebuke to the harsh narrow views of the Islamist radicals.

But now the manuscripts, too, could be under threat. And so a covert operation is under way to save them....The manuscripts, dating back to the 13th century, are evidence of ancient African and Islamist written scholarship, contradicting the myth of a purely oral tradition on the continent.

Many of the manuscripts are religious documents, but others are intellectual treatises on medicine, astronomy, literature, mathematics, chemistry, judicial law and philosophy. Many were brought to Timbuktu in camel caravans by scholars from Cairo, Baghdad and Persia who trekked to the city when it was one of the world’s greatest centres of Islamic learning. In the Middle Ages, when Europe was stagnating, the African city had 180 religious schools and a university with 20,000 students.

Timbuktu fell into decline after Moroccan invasions and French colonization, but its ancient gold-lettered manuscripts were preserved by dozens of owners, mostly private citizens, who kept them in wooden trunks or in their own libraries.

Today, under the occupation of the radical jihadists, the manuscripts face a range of threats. Conservation experts have fled the city, so the documents could be damaged by insects, mice, sand, dust or extreme temperatures. Or the Islamist militants could decide to raise money by looting and selling the documents.
Mali  Africa  Timbuktu  Geoffrey_York  cultural_institutions  covert_operations  antiquities  art_history  threats  art  collectors  collectibles  Islamists  sub-Saharan_Africa  digitalization 
december 2012 by jerryking
Mali chaos gives rise to slavery, persecution - The Globe and Mail

BAMAKO, MALI — The Globe and Mail

Last updated Sunday, Nov. 11 2012,
slavery  africa  Mali  Geoffrey_York  extremism  Islamic  Islamists 
november 2012 by jerryking
Africa next: The quest for Africa’s riches - The Globe and Mail


Last updated Sunday, Sep. 30 2012
Geoffrey_York  Africa  Congo  globalization  emerging_markets  mining  South-South  BRIC  corruption  Renaissance_Capital 
october 2012 by jerryking
Africa next: An enterprising hand up, not a handout - The Globe and Mail

NEWTON, SIERRA LEONE — The Globe and Mail

Last updated Sunday, Sep. 30 2012,
juices  Africa  entrepreneur  Geoffrey_York  Sierra_Leone 
october 2012 by jerryking

China's exports of rare earth elements fell 9.3 per cent in 2010, deepening fears among Western governments of a coming shortage of the highly sought-after metals. China produces 97 per cent of the world's supply of rare earths.
rare_earth_metals  scarcity  China  Geoffrey_York  infographics 
october 2012 by jerryking
Copycat pirate attacks on the rise in West Africa - The Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail Update
Posted on Friday, November 4, 2011
piracy  Africa  Geoffrey_York  copycats 
november 2011 by jerryking
Some investors finding China full of fool's gold
24 June 2005 |The Globe & Mail pg 10 | Geoffrey York.

"Despite all the evidence that only the tiniest minority strikes it rich in the Chinese domestic market, there is never any shortage of corporate gamblers," Joe Studwell (editor-in-chief of the China Economic Quarterly) writes in his book The China Dream , which tackles the age-old myth that China's vast population is a paradise for investors.

"For 700 years, ever since outsiders first started writing about the place, the Western world has believed that there are untold riches to be garnered in China," he says. "No nation in history has ever been promoted as a surer bet for investment returns. Yet history also teaches that time and again China has failed to fulfill the promise that foreigners ascribe to her."

John Gruetzner, a Canadian business consultant in Beijing, believes that investors can still make money in China, but they need intelligent research and planning.

"A portion of Canadian investors think you can fly in and pick some cherries and leave," he says. "That might have been okay in the 1980s and early 1990s, but now you need a high level of representation, just as you would in Buffalo or Ottawa or Paris."

The China dream is an alluring one. China today is attracting more foreign investment than any other country in the world. A record $61-billion was invested in China by foreign firms last year, and a staggering total of $570-billion has been invested since 1980. Of the world's top 500 multinational corporations, more than 400 have invested in China. Everyone seems to believe you have to be in China.

Yet the actual level of profits in China is surprisingly small. A survey last year by the China Economic Quarterly found that the affiliates of U.S. companies earned only $8.2-billion in profits in China in 2003. By comparison, they earned $7.1-billion in profits in Australia and $14.3-billion in Mexico -- two countries with far smaller populations and much less hype than China.

Joe Studwell, editor-in-chief of the China Economic Quarterly, says the profits in China have been concentrated in a small handful of foreign companies, including fast-food chains (which face no competition from state interests) and telecommunications firms (which he says were the recipients of "lucky breaks" by gaining entry to heavily regulated industries).
Geoffrey_York  China  ProQuest  risks  investing  dairy  corruption  piracy  rule_of_law  myths 
october 2011 by jerryking
CPCS Transcom helps tame traffic chaos in Lagos - The Globe and Mail
Apr. 27, 2011 | G & M | GEOFFREY YORK. If any company can
handle the unpredictability of Lagos, it would be CPCS Transcom Ltd.,
an Ottawa-based company that serves as lead adviser to the project. The
Canadian company has quietly emerged as one of the trouble-shooters of
Africa’s economic revival. It has experience in 40 African countries,
primarily as a consultant in infrastructure development, and Africa
accounts for about half of its worldwide business....Peter Kieran, grew
up in Toronto and graduated from U of T, got his first African
experience in 1970 on a summer job in Tanzania while he was an MBA
student at HBS. Inspired by his Tanzania experience, he set up a
consulting company to work in developing countries. In 1996, he
purchased CPCS International, which had originally been established by
Canadian Pacific, and merged it with their own company, Hickling
Transcom. The company has specialized in railways and ports, seeking to
make them more commercial and privately financed.
Africa  Geoffrey_York  Nigeria  Lagos  transit  canadian  management_consulting  traffic_congestion  developing_countries 
may 2011 by jerryking
Tiny Kenyan island questions tale of the Dragon - The Globe and Mail
SIYU, KENYA— From Thursday's Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, Mar. 30, 2011
Kenya  Africa  China  history  myths  Geoffrey_York 
april 2011 by jerryking
Africa: An economic giant that’s ready to wake up
May. 10, 2010 | The Globe and Mail | Geoffrey York. "Vijay
Mahajan, a marketing professor and business consultant who published a
book on Africa last year, Africa Rising. "
Geoffrey_York  Africa 
august 2010 by jerryking
Slumdog engineers knocking on multinational doors
Aug. 20, 2009 | The Globe & Mail | by Geoffrey York.
Canadian non-profit group, Engineers Without Borders, launches an
industrial development organization to solicit business from major U.S.
companies, (including Newmont Mining Corp., Coca-Cola, and the cocoa
division of Archer Daniels Midland Co.) for artisan craftsmen. George
Roter, the Toronto-based co-founder of Engineers Without Borders.
nonprofit  engineering  Engineers_Without_Borders  business_development  Africa  Ghana  Geoffrey_York 
august 2009 by jerryking
Banned aid - The Globe and Mail
Saturday, May 30, 2009 | Globe and Mail | Geoffrey York. The
real reason for the shift, of course, is a new calculation of Canada's
business and geopolitical interests. Instead of Malawi and the seven
other African countries, where most people are so desperately poor that
they earn less than $2 a day, a bigger share of Canada's foreign-aid
money will flow to middle-income places such as Peru, Colombia, Ukraine
and the Caribbean, where Canada's commercial interests are more
attractive. Canada's foreign aid seems to have become an instrument of
its trade policy.
foreign_aid  Africa  canada  canadian  foreign_policy  Geoffrey_York 
june 2009 by jerryking

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