African Development and Europe. Report of a Seminar of the by Peter Tregear

By Peter Tregear

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Additional info for African Development and Europe. Report of a Seminar of the International Student Movement for the United Nations, Cambridge, March 1966

Sample text

For all these reasons industrialisation has come to be an essential part of any development plan. It is generally recognised moreover that it can only be achieved by the importation of foreign capital and expertise derived not from government to government aid funds but from the private investor. Accepting these facts, not perhaps entirely palatable, the country bent on industrialisation adopts a realistic attitude, knowing full well that investment opportunities in other countries are not lacking and that the investor has to be attracted by the prospect of a fair return on the capital he puts at risk and the sort of attitude and conditions that will make this possible.

For instance, does the country possess a reputation for political and economic stability? Is its political attitude westernlooking, is it neutral, or does it lean towards an ideology incompatible with private enterprise? What is its attitude to existing as well as to intending foreign investors? What is the policy regarding remittances of dividends and free movement of capital? What restrictions exist on the employment of expatriate managers and technicians? The known incentives are, of course, an indication of the climate, of whether the foreign investor is welcomed, but more complete answers have to be sought by investigation and enquiry.

Nevertheless, there are some parts of Africa with prospects for industrialisation, and these are not confined to the southern areas with their large white populations in Rhodesia and the Republic of South Africa. Industrial development not only strengthens and diversifies an economy; it can also provide employment, a particularly important function in countries where an agricultural revolution could render large numbers of workers surplus to agricultural requirements and where, already, there is a marked and growing tendency towards urbanization.

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