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Patrick Bond: Popcorn Protests, not Petro Dollars, are Africa’s Hope

Politics of Climate JusticeWriting in Pambazuka News, Patrick Bond cautions against mainstream readings of Africa’s economic “rising”, saying that the continent is overdue, rather, for an economic “uprising”.

Bond is the author of Politics of Climate Justice: Paralysis Above, Movement Below.


1) Africa owes its takeoff to a variety of accelerators, nearly all of them external and occurring in the past 10 years:
• billions of dollars in aid, especially to fight HIV/AIDS and malaria;
• tens of billions of dollars in foreign-debt cancellations;
• a concurrent interest in Africa’s natural resources, led by China; and
• the rapid spread of mobile phones, from a few million in 2000 to more than 750 million today.
Business increasingly dominates foreign interest in Africa. Investment first outpaced aid in 2006 and now doubles it.

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