There’s been a lot of press and policy rejiggering over traditional attitudes towards African aid. We’ve seen for decades of its effects, or more accurately, lack of. One example from this year really showcases how domestic policies and investments, not aid, can pull Africa out of poverty.
In 2005, five of the 15 million people in Malawi needed emergency food aid. But this year, thanks to heavier agricultural subsidies (which goes against Western policies), it’s actually exporting hundreds of thousands of tons of corn.
As hard as it it to think about starving children, perhaps it’s more unsettling to think about starving children being around for generation after generation. But that’s what financial aid does. Africans don’t need handouts as much as they need investments and policies to cultivate entrepreneurial spirit.
Still, I do feel somewhat bad for taking this stance, so to make up for it, I’m directing you to Free Rice (“for each word you get right, we donate 20 grains of rice”).