Role of Foreign Aid in Africa

Topics: Africa, Aid, Development Assistance Committee Pages: 8 (2752 words) Published: November 18, 2013
Running Head: The role of international aid politics in Africa

Title: The role of international aid politics in Africa. Is it helping or hurting progress in Africa on development, or both.

Name: Saba Fazal Firdousi
Course: International Relations
ID: 10U0166
Instructor Name: Mashal Shabir


This paper aims to provide an overview of African economy in terms of the current and past issues they are facing with regard to foreign assistance from developed economies. It focuses on the development it had made in Africa through policies being adopted by government through the foreign aid. The thesis for our research paper would be effects of foreign aid on the development of Africa. Moreover, it will identify the reasons for the failures of low level of gross domestic product, increasing poverty along with high inflow of foreign aid and much more. By the end of this paper some recommendations are been suggested to uplift the downward trend of growth in African economies. This paper is further divided into six sections, starting with a brief introduction about Africa economy. Then reasons for failure of foreign aid and the crisis African economy are facing through aid dependence. We will discuss factors that influence aid usefulness followed by the relationship between foreign aid and development. Lastly, policies are being recommended for the effectiveness of foreign aid along with a general conclusion drawn after analyzing the situation.


Africa is the world second largest continent with second largest population after Asia. African nations are considered to have a very low level of income per captia and a recent statistics from the United Nation shows that 22 out of 24 nations has been marked as “ Low Human Development”. Moreover due to high level of population growth and declining trend in income per captia there is huge influx of capital inflow in Africa in the form of foreign assistance around the global especially from the developed economies. There basic aim is to help the under developed African economies to overcome their problems and recent crisis. This paper aims to provide an explanation and relationship of foreign aid and development in Africa with help of case studies and their likely outcomes.

Besides this, I will do an in depth analysis of the policies being adopted by the Africa in the past and recent years and critically examine their findings. This paper would further highlight both the drawbacks and positive aspects of foreign aid and discus the major reason and background besides every approach. The most alarming fact is though the level of foreign aid is increasing every year in the African economies but their destinies doest change much. As in comparison to the past two decades the real per captia has decreased rather than having a positive increase. This suggests that African problems cannot only be resolved through foreign assistance but other aspects also need to be address. It has been estimated in the Wall Street Journal that western economies has nearly spent $50 billion yearly and $60 trillion has been provided in past 60 years in Africa in the form of aid but yet it is deprived of basic infrastructure, level of income and standard of living. As some states like Somalia has been collapsed.

Reasons of failure of aid in Africa:

Overall, it has been generally viewed that foreign aid is short term rather than a long-term solution for the band-aid problems of Africa as this aid doesn’t particularly aim to have a structural transformation to change into an independent developed economy. It could be only made effective if the donor countries plan some long term projects such as in telecommunications, highways and power plants. In the past and even in recent year many theorists such as Amin, Peter Bauer and Andre Frank argued that global economic structure is held responsible for under development in countries like...
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