Africa: British Policy, 1/2, 02/13/02

Africa: British Policy, 1/2, 02/13/02

Africa: British Policy, 1 Date distributed (ymd): 020213 Document reposted by Africa Action

Africa Policy Electronic Distribution List: an information service provided by AFRICA ACTION (incorporating the Africa Policy Information Center, The Africa Fund, and the American Committee on Africa). Find more information for action for Africa at

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Region: Continent-Wide Issue Areas: +political/rights+ +economy/development+


Among rich country leaders, British Prime Minister Tony Blair has taken the lead in calling for increases in development aid, opening Western markets to African exports, support for the "New Partnership for Africa's Development" framework presented by African leaders, and greater attention to addressing global and African poverty. In meetings of the G-7 Finance Ministers and other fora, British Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown has delivered the same message.

This message, contrasting to the indifference to Africa displayed by Blair's and Brown's counterparts in Washington, won applause on Blair's recently completed trip to West Africa. But commentators also raised many hard questions about British policies.

This posting contains excerpts from the pamphlet Tackling Poverty: A Global New Deal, published this month and based on recent speeches by Gordon Brown.

A related posting also sent out today contains (1) a critical analytical commentary from African scholar Mahmood Mamdani, (2) a statement by Tanzanian civil society groups on the $40 million sale to Tanzania of a militarily capable radar control system from the UK firm BAe, and (3) several additional links with commentary on the Blair trip and related issues.

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Tackling Poverty: A Global New Deal


A pamphlet based on the speeches by the Rt Hon Gordon Brown MP, Chancellor of the Exchequer to the New York Federal Reserve on 16 November 2001 and the Press Club, Washington D. C. on 17 December 2001

HM Treasury, February 2002

[Brief excerpts only; for a PDF file of the 41-page pamphlet, see .PDF - type URL on one line]

And there is now growing agreement that as we work together to fight terrorism we must also work together to address the causes of poverty--not just because to do so is central to long term national security and peace, but because to do so is right--a moral imperative, an economic necessity and a social duty.


Managed badly, globalisation could leave whole economies and millions of people in the developing world marginalised. Managed wisely, globalisation can, and will, lift millions out of poverty and become the high road to a just and inclusive global economy. So the real issue is not whether we are against globalisation: it is whether we are for social justice.


But whatever our concerns about the sheer scale of the challenge of globalisation, we must resist two opposite temptations: the first is to retreat into the outdated protectionism and isolationism that would deprive developing countries of what they need most -- development itself; the second is to recycle the old laissez-faire that says there is nothing that can be done. To succumb to either temptation would hurt both the powerless and the prosperous.


As different understandings of the world economy converge, we are moving towards a new paradigm in which low inflation and fiscal stability are the necessary but not sufficient conditions for securing prosperity for all. ... From the foundation of stability, a modern strategy for prosperity involves a concentration on what brings not just low inflation but sustainable development. And we must now recognise as important: * the pursuit of competition and not just privatisation; * the importance of public as well as private investment; and * the need for proper financial supervision as well as liberalisation, including a route map sequencing the liberalisation of capital markets.


A strategy for prosperity for all requires us to combine policies for economic success and social justice and to tackle the causes of poverty. And this has led countries, international organisations and non- governmental organisations to sign up to the historic shared task of setting and meeting eight Millennium Development Goals. The United Nations (UN), International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank, OECD, G7, G20 and all major developed and developing countries have signed up to the goals of:

* eradicating extreme poverty and hunger by halving, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people whose income is less than one dollar a day and the proportion of people who suffer from hunger;

* achieving universal primary education, by ensuring that, by 2015, children everywhere, boys and girls alike, will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling;

* promoting gender equality and empower women by eliminating gender disparity in primary and secondary education, preferably by 2005, and to all levels of education no later than 2015;

* reducing by two thirds, between 1990 and 2015, the under- five mortality rate;

* improving maternal health by reducing by three quarters, between 1990 and 2015, the maternal mortality ratio;

* combating HIV/ AIDS, malaria and other diseases;

* ensuring environmental sustainability, including halving by 2015 the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and by 2020 to have achieved a significant improvement in the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers; and

* developing a global partnership for development.


There are four building blocks of this global new deal.

The first building block is an improvement in the terms on which the poorest countries participate in the global economy and actively increasing their capacity to do so: new rules of the game in codes and standards that all countries--rich and poor-- can sign up to.

The second building block is the adoption by business internationally of high corporate standards for engagement as reliable and consistent partners in the development process. My main proposal is to back up a code of corporate standards with support for the creation, in developing countries, of investment forums between public and private sectors.

The third building block is moving forward the great progress made at Doha by the swift adoption of an improved trade regime essential for developing countries participation on fair terms in the world economy.

Stability, investment and trade are the main long term drivers of global prosperity but not all will benefit without a fourth building block: a substantial transfer of additional resources from the richest to the poorest countries in the form of investment for development. Here the focus must not be on aid to compensate the poor for their poverty, but investment that builds new capacity to compete and addresses the long term causes of poverty.

And there is an urgency for action.

America's post- Second World War achievement in what we now call the Marshall Plan should be our inspiration in this post--Cold War world--not just for the reconstruction of Afghanistan but for the entire developing world.

The plan proposed by the US Secretary of State George Marshall transferred one per cent of national income every year, for four years, from America to Europe--in total the equivalent in today's money of $75 billion--not as an act of charity but as a frank recognition that like peace, prosperity was indivisible; that to be sustained it had to be shared; and that to achieve this goal would require a new public purpose and international cooperation on a massive scale.


II. Rules of The Game

The first building block is improving the terms on which the poorest countries participate in the global economy and actively increasing their capacity to do so.

In a world of ever more rapid financial flows, developing countries who need finance most are, at the same time, the most vulnerable to the judgements and instabilities of global markets. We know that capital is more likely to move to environments which are stable, and least likely to stay in environments which are, or become, unstable. And we know that in unstable economies, poverty rises.

So for every country, rich or poor, macroeconomic stability is not an option but an essential pre-condition of economic success and the fight against poverty. It is in the interests of stability, and of preventing crises in developing and emerging market countries, that we seek a new rules-based system. And such a rules- based system depends on there being clear rules, proper transparent procedures for decision- making and well understood systems of accountability.



Open, transparent and accountable national policies, internationally monitored, are the foundation for macroeconomic stability. But we must also do far more to ensure growth and development by taking steps to promote and raise domestic and foreign investment--and by finding better ways for public and private sectors to work together in raising investment levels.

In the last decade, foreign direct investment flows across national boundaries--including to, and between, developing countries--have increased four-fold. And evidence shows that such investment is an important driver for growth and development generating higher productivity, employment and wealth, and transferring knowledge, skills and technology.

But the poorest and least developed suffer a double handicap. Foreign direct investment is too low, with investment per head in developing countries just $35 compared with $805 in the higher income countries. In sub-Saharan Africa foreign direct investment is even lower at $12 per person. In addition domestically generated savings and investment are low, with savings that do exist often leaving the country.



In the last forty years those developing countries which have managed to be more open and trade more in the world economy have seen faster growth rates than those which have remained closed. >From the early 1970s to the early 1990s, developing countries that were able to pursue growth through trade grew at least twice as fast as those who kept their tariffs high and their doors closed to imports and competition. We must ensure that all countries have the opportunity to reap these benefits.

Full trade liberalisation could lift at least 300 million people out of poverty by 2015. Even diminishing protection by 50 per cent in agriculture and in industrial goods and services would increase the world's yearly income by nearly $400 billion: a boost to growth of 1.4 per cent. All countries and regions stand to benefit, with developing countries gaining an estimated $150 billion a year and higher than average increases in GDP growth.



... there cannot be a solution to the urgent problems of the poverty these countries face--and to the need for public investment as a partner with private investment--without a fourth reform: a substantial increase in development aid to nations most in need and willing to focus on the fight against poverty.

... [debt relief, effectiveness of targeting aid, better use of funds received, new sources of finance (inlcuding Tobin Tax, Arms Tax or Special Drawing rights)]

We in Britain approach further evaluation of all these proposals with an open mind.

But in the end, it all comes back to the duties national governments--especially the richest national governments-- recognise and are prepared to discharge. If the international community is to move with the urgency that the scale of today's suffering demands, we must each, as national governments, be bold and acknowledge the obligations of the richest parts of the developed world to poorest and least developed parts of the same world.

One proposal for additional resources involves the richest countries making a substantial additional commitment of resources to 2015 and beyond. And there is a case for adding to these resources by examining a further option. Through richer countries making a long-term commitment of increased resources for development for, say, 30 years and with national governments offering a guarantee--either through callable reserves or appropriate collateral as security--then additional aid contributions could be levered up in the years to 2015 to meet our target for extra funds.

In this way $50 billion more could be available each year to the poorest countries in their fight against poverty. In future no country genuinely committed to economic development, poverty reduction, and transparency and proper standards should be denied the chance to make progress because of a lack of investment.

There should, of course, be a full discussion on how the extra resources could be most effectively employed.


VI. An Action Plan for the Global New Deal

For if we are to achieve a global new deal for the developing world we must agree a shared responsibility for the task--setting out the practical steps each partner must take. So developed and developing countries, international institutions, the private sector and non-governmental organisations and faith groups all need to work within their powers and responsibilities to ensure a greater effort is made to guarantee a new global deal. Our joint responsibility must reinforce not diminish accountability for the outcome. And each of us have to discharge specific responsibilities.


(a) Developed countries

We first call upon all the developed countries to work together to:

* move forward on debt relief, in particular to renounce the right to any benefit from the historic debt owed by the HIPC countries;

* ensure the successful resolution of the new 'development' trade round, including by negotiating reductions in agriculture export subsidies with a view to phasing them out, by all countries granting duty and quota-free access to developing countries for all exports except arms and by financing capacity building in developing countries so they can participate fully and effectively in the forthcoming negotiations;

* improve aid effectiveness through untying; better coordination and a greater focus on poorest and best performing countries; and

* significantly increase the overall aid effort, considering a broad package of measures to achieve this including the support for the $50 billion increase in investment aid.

(b) Developing Countries

A sound domestic environment is the foundation of poverty reduction and sustained economic growth enabling countries to make effective use of aid and harness the private sector finance in development. We therefore call upon the developing countries to:

* adopt new codes and standards for transparent management of fiscal and monetary systems;

* strengthen the accountability of their public financial management systems so as to eliminate corruption;

* develop, strengthen and implement fully comprehensive and costed national poverty reduction strategies; and

* establish business environments to facilitate growth in private investment, including the creation of investment forums.

(c) International institutions

The United Nations and other international institutions have a central role to play in bringing our efforts together and supporting developing countries. ...

(d) The private sector

Long-term investment is critical for growth and development. There needs to be a new engagement by business as reliable and long-term partners in economic development. We therefore call upon the private sector to:

* work with developing countries to increase investment, in particular through participation in national and regional investment forums to share best practice, examine current barriers and seek to build consensus for necessary actions; and

* increase stakeholder awareness to achieve cross-border accountability, in particular by applying agreed international standards of best practice for multinational companies and by assessing and reporting on their economic and social impact through such initiatives as the Global Compact and the Global Reporting Initiative.

(e) Non-governmental organisations and faith groups

NGOs and faith groups around the world campaign to end poverty and injustice and their support for the Millennium Development Goals is vital. We therefore call upon the NGOS and churches to:

* ensure developed and developing countries, businesses and international organisations are held accountable for progress towards the Millennium Development Goals;

* raise public awareness and campaign regarding the outrage of child poverty and the need for urgent action on the Millennium Development Goals, including progress on poverty, debt, trade and social justice; and

* assist developing countries in developing and implementing community-driven national poverty reduction strategies.


After 1945, George Marshall's plan for the reconstruction of Europe played a vital part in winning the peace. As a result, both Europe and America flourished, with increased prosperity and employment helping to create a more stable peace.

And just as, with extra resources, Marshall affirmed a unifying vision in the fight against "hunger, poverty, desperation and chaos," so again today we must transfer the resources necessary to secure for our time "a working economy in the world so as to permit the emergence of political and social conditions in which free institutions can exist." In this way, we will not only win the peace but secure prosperity.

The challenge is immense but--in the spirit of Marshall--the answer is not to retreat from globalisation. Instead we must advance social justice on a global scale, to the benefit of all-- and do so with more global cooperation not less, and with stronger, not weaker, international institutions. If the worldwide debt campaign has taught us anything it is that we advance only if we advance as one.

Our vision of the way forward is that in an increasingly interdependent world, all can benefit if each meets agreed obligations for change. This global new deal can ensure that the world's poor can share fairly in the benefits of prosperity throughout the world and is grounded in the belief that not only do we have inescapable obligations beyond our front doors and garden gates, responsibilities beyond the city wall and duties beyond our national boundaries, but that this generation has it in its power--if it so chooses--to finally free the world from want.


Africa: British Policy, 2 Date distributed (ymd): 020213 Document reposted by Africa Action

Africa Policy Electronic Distribution List: an information service provided by AFRICA ACTION (incorporating the Africa Policy Information Center, The Africa Fund, and the American Committee on Africa). Find more information for action for Africa at

+++++++++++++++++++++Document Profile+++++++++++++++++++++

Region: Continent-Wide Issue Areas: +political/rights+ +economy/development+


Among rich country leaders, British Prime Minister Tony Blair has taken the lead in calling for increases in development aid, opening Western markets to African exports, support for the "New Partnership for Africa's Development" framework presented by African leaders, and greater attention to addressing global and African poverty. In meetings of the G-7 Finance Ministers and other fora, British Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown has delivered the same message.

This message, contrasting to the indifference to Africa displayed by Blair's and Brown's counterparts in Washington, won applause on Blair's recently completed trip to West Africa. But commentators also raised many hard questions about British policies.

This posting contains:

(1) a critical analytical commentary from African scholar Mahmood Mamdani, originally published in the Guardian (Feb. 8, 2002). It is reposted with permission of the author, and includes several paragraphs that were dropped from the Guardian version for reasons of space.

(2) a statement by Tanzanian civil society groups on the $40 million sale to Tanzania of a militarily capable radar control system from the UK firm BAe, and

(3) several additional links with commentary on the Blair trip and related issues.

A related posting also sent out today contains excerpts from the pamphlet Tackling Poverty: A Global New Deal, published this month and based on recent speeches by Gordon Brown.

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Misrule Britannia

It's good news that Tony Blair wants to help heal the scars of Africa, says Mahmood Mamdani, but first he needs to realise how they got there

Mahmood Mamdani

The Guardian February 8, 2002

As you spend your second morning in Africa, Mr Blair, I hope you are beginning to recognise one fact above all else: the predicament of Africa is a consequence of failed policies. A turnaround will require a new policy consensus, not just more cash.

Your recognition that "mutual interest and self-interest increasingly walk hand in hand" is surely the beginning of political wisdom in a globalised world. Just as sure, however, is the need to recognise that oneness is not sameness. True, places such as Rwanda, Congo, Zimbabwe and Sierra Leone symbolise the current African crisis, but each is an outcome of a blend of processes: some specific, others illustrating a shared African history and relationship with the rest of the world. The time is right to draw lessons from both action and inaction, in Rwanda and Sierra Leone.

[If there is a single event that stands for both the contemporary African tragedy and a callous global indifference in its face, it is the Rwandan genocide. When I began to do research on the buildup to the Rwandan genocide, I could find no evidence of political violence that pit Hutu against Tutsi before the colonial period, even though there had been differences in wealth and power between the two for centuries.

I thought the big change began with Belgian colonialism. It debased the Hutu as indigenous and uncivilized and exalted the Tutsi as foreign and civilized. Instead of coming to grips with this legacy, the nationalist revolution of 1959 built on it: Hutu revolutionaries were determined to turn the tables and create a Hutu nation in which the Tutsi had at best the status of resident aliens.

The genocide in Rwanda was not an inevitable outcome of this history. Besides the colonial heritage and the nationalist failure to transcend it, there were two other contributory factors. The civil war was regional in making. When armed Tutsi refugees crossed the border into Rwanda in August, 1990, they were exercizing the final option in a postcolonial context where the right of citizenship was tied, not to individual residence, but to group ethnic identity. The final contributing factor was global: had it not been for the callous indifference of the so-called civilized world, the civil war would not have ended up in genocide.

The genocide turned Rwanda into a smoldering volcano. The post- genocide state considered itself morally responsible for the fate of every living Tutsi anywhere. The next time a Tutsi minority was denied citizenship rights on grounds of ethnicity -- this time in Kivu in eastern Congo -- the Rwandan state intervened. You are right, Mr. Blair, that the Congo crisis demands the world's attention but you need to remember the ageold wisdom that the best way to contain a fire may not be to rush to its center.

Of the constellation tied together as the African Great Lakes, the only knot loose enough to be untangled is Burundi, why Britain will do well to urge Western nations to focus their energies on Burundi, so as to set an example that may be followed elsewhere in the region.

The time is right to draw lessons from both action and its inaction, in both Rwanda and Sierra Leone. It has not been easy to shed the legacy of the Cold War. Recall how Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan held a protective umbrella called 'constructive engagement' while apartheid South Africa moved from a policy of 'detente' to one of 'total onslaught', unleashing terror in Mozambique and Angola through local proxies. Think of the British response to January 6, 1999, when R.U.F. gunmen maimed and raped their way across Freetown, Sierra Leone, killing more than 5,000 civilians in a day. The response then was to pressure the government of the day to share power with the rebels. Even if the Cold War had ended, the high tolerance for local terror had not.

Fortunately, the end of the Cold War meant that it was possible to learn local lessons in local places. British inaction in Sierra Leone did turn into action.]

The lesson of action in Sierra Leone is no different from the conclusion drawn by the UN commander in Rwanda: a few thousand well-armed and disciplined UN troops would have prevented massacres from turning into a genocide. That lesson, Mr Blair, needs to be etched in our historical memories: zero tolerance for terrorists, for those who target civilians and the infrastructure of civilian life.

But just as many in Africa have been quick to note the difference between the shift of British policy in Sierra Leone and continuing western indifference to developments in the African Great Lakes (Congo, Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda); they have also noted the difference in the British response to recent developments in Zimbabwe and Zambia.

What, many Africans ask, is the difference between the stolen election in Zambia and the election that may be stolen in Zimbabwe? Why heightened British concern for Zimbabwe and cold indifference to Zambia? Could British preoccupation with one previous colony, and not another, reflect a narrow concern for the future of British "kith and kin" in Zimbabwe?

It may be wise to take into account African sensibilities and apply the same standards to Zambia and Zimbabwe. You are right to speak of the need to come to terms with "failed states" before they fester. But to really tackle this problem, you must understand its genesis. The ethnic conflicts in the Great Lakes, as in many other places, are not between the resource-rich and the resource-poor; they are between those who have a right of citizenship and those who don't.

The sad fact is that the form of citizenship which exists in contemporary Africa has been bequeathed by the colonial experience. The idea that citizenship for Africans should be a group and not an individual right, and that only members of those groups recognised as indigenous should be granted citizenship, is an idea whose vintage goes no farther than the colonial period. The plain fact, Mr Blair, is that before colonialism ethnicity was a cultural identity. It was not a political identity, the basis of belonging to a political community.

The core political legacy of British "indirect rule" in Africa was the absence of a modern state. Britain ruled its middle African colonies through a range of "native authorities", each of which dispensed with the rule of law in the name of "tradition". The colonial fiction was that African tradition, particularly political tradition, was ethnic. The result was to disenfranchise those considered ethnically not indigenous to an area, even if they were born there.

The social legacy of indirect rule, meanwhile, was the absence of a national intelligentsia. When Frederick Lugard, the British colonial administrator, moved from India to Nigeria, he was determined that Britain's new African colonies would be immunised against "the Indian disease", by which he meant the creation of a westernised native intelligentsia. The sober fact is that it was not the colonial interlude, but nationalist independence, that laid the basis of a university-educated intelligentsia in middle Africa.

Despite current belief, the story of independent Africa is not one of unremitting decline. The first two decades of independence were decades of moderate progress. Between 1967 and 1980 more than a dozen African countries registered a growth rate of 6%. This included not only mineral-rich countries such as Gabon, Congo, Nigeria and Botswana but also countries such as Egypt, Kenya and Ivory Coast. To be sure, there was a downside. That was the failure to transform agriculture, and thus to bring the vast majority of the population into the development process. This shortcoming in economic policy went alongside and was sustained by a political authoritarianism.

This downside provided an opening for a dogmatic assault by the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank calling for so-called structural adjustment at the height of the cold war. Whether intended or not, its effect was to scupper the state-building project undertaken with modest success by nationalism.

Structural adjustment called for an all-round and drastic reduction in state involvement. Growth up to 1980 had been sustained mainly by domestic savings: close to a third of African countries had savings rates higher than 25% by 1980. Today, the rate of savings is closer to 10%. The difference is larger than the entire aid flow to the continent.

The assault on social expenditure - including university funding - combined with an emphasis on importing expatriate intellectuals through technical assistance programmes. Together, the two devastated the national intelligentsias, the most competitive of whom fled to the west. No wonder there are more expatriates in Africa today than in the heyday of colonialism.

Finally, there was the promotion of non-governmental organisations (NGOs). Said to be a measure to bolster democracy in newly independent Africa, this initiative ended up undermining whatever democratic traditions had been built up in civil society. If truth be told, the proliferation of NGOs has been central to the creation of a begging-bowl public culture. Contemporary Africa has not been ignored; it has been wronged. What Africa needs immediately is not a pile of cash, but a changed policy context.

Without a consensus on a policy shift, there will be no way ahead. You are right, Mr Blair, to think that contemporary Africa shares the dilemma of Afghanistan: it is a victim of the cold war and the subsequent self-righteous walking away by western powers. As in Afghanistan, in Africa the prerequisite to recovery will be the construction of state independence. To achieve this, we need to shed the cold-war dogmatism designed to trim the state and liberate the market - whose one consequence has been to contribute to state collapse throughout Africa.

Recognise that history gives us only two ways of building a public power: through waging war and through the provision of social services. By undercutting the role of the state as a provider of social services, structural adjustment turned the relationship between the state and the population into one of naked coercion through security and armed services.

Recognise also that without an active state role, the historically weak classes in Africa - entrepreneurs and intellectuals - will not thrive. Before you increase aid, you may consider sharply curtailing technical assistance - that self-motivated subsidy given by western countries to their own largely unemployable cadre and passed off as aid. Employ African technical personnel on projects in Africa and hold them accountable to African constituencies, not just to donors.

Finally, you should stop promoting a non-accountable NGO culture and try to strengthen local democracy instead.

It is true, Mr Blair, that Africans must determine their own destiny. But Africans must first have the chance to shape their destiny - an enabling policy context - before they can be held responsible for it.

* Mahmood Mandani is director of the Institute of African Studies at Columbia University.


Civil Society's Common Statement on the Government of Tanzania / BAe Radar issue

26th January 2002

Recently the Government of Tanzania (GoT) concluded a deal to buy a sophisticated radar air control system from the UK firm BAe Systems worth US$40 million. The issue only came to light in Tanzania after major differences of opinion within the British cabinet were leaked to the British press. To date, both Tanzanian and British governments have failed to clarify (albeit the attempt by Tanzanian government in the 'Daily News' yesterday) the military or commercial nature of the equipment, or the rationale for the large price tag, when adequate equipment for civilian purposes costs one quarter of the price, and can be obtained through grant aid.

Given that Tanzania is a highly indebted poor nation which has just qualified for debt relief under the HIPC initiative, it is very shocking to learn --from external sources-- that the Tanzanian Government has secretly committed the nation to an additional $40 million of commercial debt to add to its existing unsustainable debt stock.

We, Tanzanian civil society organizations (CSOs) note with concern that the negotiations for the radar system have been going on secretly for a number of years, and a down- payment made, during which time we and other like-minded organisations have been campaigning for debt cancellation in order to improve access to basic services for the majority of Tanzanians.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair is concerned about protecting the jobs of 250 BAe workers in the Isle of Wight, while ignoring the cost of the radar to Tanzanian citizens, who on average earn US$250 a year. We strongly condemn the decision by the UK Government to issue a license to BAe for the radar, an act that is inconsistent with their international aid, debt relief and sustainable development policies. It is most unfortunate that the progressive work of Gordon Brown and Clare Short in terms of promoting these noble objectives should be undermined by such an unwise deal.

It is ironic that the UK gives budgetary support to Tanzania worth US$40 million a year, thus giving vital support for debt relief with one hand and taking it back with the other.

We Tanzanian CSOs are convinced that the BAe radar is too expensive for Tanzania to afford, and that we do not have the military capacity to make good use of the equipment in question, if indeed it is a military system.

The Tanzanian public deserves answers to the following questions:

On whose authority and with what internal scrutiny in the cabinet and parliament has this deal been negotiated? Have MPs ever had the opportunity to deliberate on it? Has it been the subject of discussion under the Public Expenditure Review and other financial policy bodies? Why was there no tender floated by the Government for such a big transaction? Why does the government insist on buying such expensive equipment when there is a cheaper alternative available under grant aid? Why is Barclays Bank extending a loan to the GoT at lower than commercial rates? Have we been informed of the total cost of the deal or just the first installment of something much more expensive, bearing in mind that when the radar deal was originally proposed the price tag was more than o100 million? How was it possible for BAe to proceed to assemble the radar equipment without formal government approval?

We are thankful to the Bretton Woods Institutions for showing concern for the people of Tanzania by opposing the deal. We would like to see the demands for public interest scrutiny such as the radar extended to all major investment projects, including those financed by soft loans from the IFIs themselves.

We urge our government to forthwith suspend the deal to purchase the radar, pending a full public enquiry into the issues raised above.

We also demand that, in future, any acquisition of multilateral, bilateral or commercial debt should be made public and involve wide participation of people, including parliament, where we believe the people's interest should be protected.

We urge Clare Short, U.K. Minister for Overseas Development, to instruct the Department for International Development (DfID) to withhold the budgeted $40 million (o28 million) in budget support for the GoT for 2002/03 pending the results of the public enquiry into the deal.

Lastly, we Tanzanian CSOs urge the governments of Tanzania and the UK and the donor community in general to take seriously their collective commitment to open government and pro-poor policies, which will fail miserably if such murky deals are allowed to proceed unsanctioned.

SIGNED: TCDD (Tanzania Coalition for Debt and Developoment), TANGO (Tanzania Association of Non-Governmental Organizations, TADREG (Tanzania Development Research Group), PELUM (Participatory & Ecological Land Use Assocation) Tanzania, ACTIONAID Tanzania, The Leadership Forum, National Youth Forum, TGNP (Tanzania Gender Networking Project), IGODENI and OxfamGB Tanzania.


Additional Recent Articles and Links

Note: some of these links may be temporary. If they do not work, try the search on the site indicated.

"Arms to Africa scar Britain's conscience," Richard Bingley, Feb 3, 2002, The Observer,11581,643774,00.html Bingley is spokesman for the Campaign Against Arms Trade

"British arms sales to Africa soar," Kamal Ahmed, Political Editor, Feb. 3, 2002, The Observer,11581,644096,00.html

Campaign against Arms Trade

Blair Speech to Nigerian National Assembly, Feb. 7, 2002

Blair Speech to Ghanaian Parliament, Feb. 8, 2002

"Cash and carry misery in Ghana, Britain is backing reforms which are deepening Africa's poverty", John Kampfner The Guardian, Feb. 8, 2002,4273,4352110,00.html John Kampfner is making a film for the BBC on the impact of IMF/World Bank reforms on Ghana.

"Time Bush got Brown's Message," Simon Maxwell, director, Overseas Development Institute The Guardian, Feb. 11, 2002,4273,4353525,00.html

Bretton Woods Update, Jan/Feb 2002 "Brown's 'New Deal' suggests enhanced Bank, Fund roles"


Message-Id: <> From: "Africa Action" <> Date: Wed, 13 Feb 2002 18:56:25 -0500 Subject: Africa: British Policy, 1/2

Editor: Ali B. Ali-Dinar

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