Thursday, August 06, 2009

Partnership not patronage


...If the Obama administration wishes to truly make a difference, it must do so as an equal partner, addressing several low-cost, high-impact priorities.

To start, developed partner countries must curb corruption abroad. Efforts by African governments to strengthen democracy and governance are weakened if money stolen from the continent can find safe havens in secret accounts in the West. Chillingly, major OECD countries have yet to prosecute a single defendant for fraudulent and corrupt practices overseas. Poorly enforced international covenants won't deter collusion and bid-rigging in large African infrastructure contracts....

Secretary Clinton has an opportunity to secure a quick win while in Nairobi, Kenya, for the Africa Growth and Opportunities Act forum this month. Expanding AGOA--the showpiece of America's trading relationship with Africa--to include a larger number of agricultural and processed commodities will help. But if Clinton does not address U.S. agricultural trade subsidies that distort the forces of the marketplace AGOA will never realize its potential--nor will Africa be able to trade its way out of poverty....

more economic points at link (too long to post).

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