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Paper Topic:

How would you explain deindustrialization in many African economies in the period 1980-1996?


How would you explain deindustrialization in many African economies in the period 1980-1996

De-colonization after the II World War , brought freedom to a number of African Countries but along with that many serious economic problems also surfaced . From the depths of poverty , these countries found themselves incapable of facing the tough competition in the area of international trade . Least Developed Countries (LDCs , particularly of Africa , have been increasingly marginalized in international trade and trade liberalization recommended to these countries to expand exports and increase GDP have resulted in

de-industrialization according to an UNCTAD senior economist , Mehdi Shafaeddin (Raghavan 1996 ) Every Finance Minister and the Central Banking Authority knows that devaluation is not the solution for the economic maladies of a country . For a poor man in the Least Developed Countries (LDCs ) in Africa , the chances to work is the greatest of all needs , and even poorly paid and relatively unproductive work is better than idleness (Schumacher , 1977 ,

, 161 ) Since 1980s , with no proper and systematic association , between devaluation and trade liberalization such policies caused hardship to the poor . They also failed to create capacity building and sustainable exports and growth . Another serious development that engulfed the African countries is that the policies paved way for uncontrollable de-industrialization . An alternative approach for trade reforms was not envisaged well in time

De-industrialization in many African economies in the period 1980-1996 was mainly due to the following reasons

Trade policy was not development-oriented

No concrete steps for building up supply capacity both at firm-levels and national levels

The units of integral part of industrial and development were not clearly defined

Long Term objectives of development were not defined

No clear-cut policy for liberalization and protection of industries

The constraints related to external financial support , market access and technical assistance

The prime need for an African Country , which became free , was an economic and social action program on a national and supranational basis . Creation and development of Intermediate Technologies was the need of the hour . Such an attempt was most suitable for the generation and promotion of full employment in the developing countries . Colonial period saw the redefining of the boundaries of African States , as per the requirement of the colonial powers and not on the basis of the economic needs of the African people . That trend had to be reversed and the need to create the conditions for integration was strongly felt . The practical application of this ideal was nowhere to be seen in Africa , as each independent country faced insurmountable political , ethnic and economic problems . The economies of Africa were basically sound and were quite dynamic . According to Prof .Adebayo Adedeji , In the 1970s , the average rate of growth was 5-6 per cent . Some countries achieved 7 or 8 per cent growth rates . But in the 1980s , the growth rates averaged less than 3 per cent . And that really was a problem . If we can revive the economies and begin to achieve prosperity , then we will have created a very...

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