Foreign aid simply means the economical or technical assistance that involves transfer of capital, goods or services from a country or an international organization for the good of the recipient country (normally a poorer country) and its population. It is aimed at funding enormous projects like construction of water systems and also to achieve the United Nations Millennium Development Goals such as reducing poverty, child mortality, and improving education in Africa.
Of late, however, the abysmal failure of such projects has raised eyebrows as to whether foreign aid is still essential to the 21st century developing African countries. Below are some of the reasons for and against foreign aid in Africa.
As a result of foreign aid, there have been improved standards in the provisions of health care, education, and infrastructure in most African countries. Influential philanthropists and foundations such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Bill Clinton Foundation, Oprah Winfrey’s Leadership Schools have pumped in huge sums of money used for construction of schools, provision of clean water in war torn regions or slummy areas like Soweto or Gulu in Northern Uganda.
It is also through foreign aid that friendly ties are strengthened between two or more governments participating in it. With this, countries have been able to trade with each other where most African countries’ GDP has tremendously increased. For instance, William Gumede of New African magazine states that
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Some of the main reasons why Australia provides foreign aid is to increase advanced systems and technology in other countries, decrease poverty, make other countries more stable generally and financially, etc. Some government and non-government organization like Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), AusAID, World vision, Red cross, etc. also help provide foreign aid to other countries. Australia’s 10 main focus points and the status of achievement for some of the following in providing aid to other countries are towards the following:
As mentioned by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Australia’s Aid program works in, “promoting prosperity, reducing poverty and enhancing stability”. Cuts in the foreign aid budget will not only affect the countries around us, but also Australia. Through Australia’s ongoing support to developing countries by AusAID (Australian Agency for International Development), we have strengthened our countries political stability and security by creating close ties with other nations. Australia donates around AU$5 billion each year to aiding the developing countries around us, particularly nations located in the Asia Pacific Region. By doing this we have improved their economies, bringing peace to these countries.
The foreign country receiving aid needs to receive the correct type of help for them to get out of poverty. If they received affordable education and studies, they will be able to obtain skills needed to improve and stabilize their country. When they receive certain skills, they will be more prominent to get jobs to help provide for them. With better education, they will be able to form a strong country and become wealthy. The United States has many resources already, so much that the government pays farmers not to grow crops.
Foreign Aid can be described many ways, from a governments point of view, foreign aid is a voluntary transfer of resources from one country to another country. Foreign aid can be delivered in many different ways, a major part of foreign aid is providing medical assistance to a country when they cannot afford it themselves. Different countries view Aid in different ways, and the standards of what exactly constitutes aid varies depending on the country, for example until around 1960 most countries considered military assistance a form of foreign aid but this has since been changed. Aid, however is not restricted to governments and can be provided by individuals or private organizations as well.
Additionally, when developing countries utilize U.S. aid to galvanize their financial stability, it results in a larger global export market for U.S. goods and services (Marshall,
Currently numerous African nations receive millions even billions of dollars worth of foreign aid from western nations such as the United States, United KIngdom, France, etc. The main goal of providing foreign aid to African nations is to help provide a base to improve the conditions of developing African nations. This aid works to varying degrees of success some nations use the foreign aid to help improve their economies and infrastructure others dedicate a small portion to helpful services the rest go to the pockets of corrupt leaders and politicians. Foreign aid to Africa is not very effective in the positive development of Africa because the aid has caused little to no investing and accumulation of savings within the nations of Africa, dependencies on foreign aid and the destruction of local businesses, and foreign aid ends up in the hands of corrupt and inefficient leaders.
The less you have the better you do. Aid is not helpful because it is not planned or targeted. Not receiving aid teaches the political system how to deal with problems without other people interfering. Aid is inherently negative Giving foreign aid is detrimental
As the world enters a globalized age, the interactions between nations become increasingly important. What was once a ‘all for one, one for all’ mentality, with nations acting mostly in their own best interests -barring, of course, the alliances made between nations, often military in nature acting against a common foe- has become a question of the common good. What obligation to help, if any, do countries with well developed economies and militaries have towards those nations in need? Nations that form economic alliances with other nations develop more quickly than they could have on their own, and aid from a greater international power can make a large difference in the economy and livelihood of developing countries. The United States, annually, donates somewhere between $30-50 billion to foreign aid, in an effort to help those nations that find themselves torn by war, disease, poverty, a lack of education, and a myriad of other problems. The question becomes one of what role does the United States play in foreign affairs, particularly that concerning foreign aid, and whether the United States is obligated to play that role, and ‘do its part,’ so to speak, on the global stage. Several factors will be examined to determine the answer, namely; the United States foreign aid budget and what the funds actually do, the comparison between the private and public sectors of foreign aid, the benefits of trade versus aid, and the roles of other developed nations in foreign aid.
To begin with, a huge problem with foreign aid is that it does not reach the right people. When most people donate to an aid organization, they have no clue where their money is going. They are told it makes underprivileged lives better, but does it always? Most of the aid is given to the recipient’s government to distribute as they see fit. If there are guidelines, they are just that. They are ill-defined and inexact in their terms of agreement. Two reasons why the aid may not reach the right people are that the government does not always know where in the country needs money and help the most and the governments are
American bilateral aid, in the form of outright grants or low-interest loans, often comes highly qualified and redirects wealth back to the United States by design. The United States no longer keeps track of the level of tied aid, citing statistical difficulties, but USAID reports in 1996 estimated that “71.6% of bilateral aid commitments were tied to the purchase of US goods and services” (ActionAid 1). In 1993, USAID generated seven billion dollars in revenue from purchase of American goods and services and claimed it has created “thousands of jobs…here at home” (Hancock 156). Clearly, the United States reaps a handsome reward from its foreign aid policy. Is this what we want from a supposed exporter of development expertise and the richest country in the world?
Dambisa Moyo’s Dead Aid was an enjoyable read that presents a well-rounded discussion pertaining to foreign aid, and does not particularly aim to please. I believe Moyo’s opinion and thoughts regarding aid in Africa to be mostly valid, based upon her upbringing in Zambia and her extensive and diverse educational background. Dambisa does fantastic work of noting other’s publishings, projects, and/or approaches to the effects of aid on underdeveloped nations. The purpose of this review is to not only give the audience a basic understanding of Dead Aid, but to also offer up my personal critique of the concepts and ideas presented by Moyo.
Misused Money, Over $500 billion (U.S.) has been sent to African nations in the form of direct aid. The consensus is that the money has had little long term effect. In addition, most African nations have borrowed substantial sums of money. However, a large percentage of the money was either been invested in weapons (money that was spent back in developed nations and
Over the last 50 years, the world has struggled to maintain an economic balance and stability, while flourishing countries try to maintain a steady income to support its people and relations with other countries. Therefore, when a continent like Africa fails to maintain a stable government and economy, super powers such as America decide to intervene with its relations. Africa has great potential to become another pillar of the world’s economic structure with its mass amounts of uncultivated land. Unfortunately, corruption and irresponsible governments hinder that progress. Foreign aid while helpful should be limited to a yearly amount because it allows the government to repudiate responsibility and gives room for corruption; it creates a
Our world now is divided into develop and develop and developing countries. The one who achieved the process countries are those which are in the process of development. (Ashwath Komath, April 19, 2010). According to (Andrew Page, 2005) Foreign Aid or Official Development Assistance (ODA) is a transfer of resources on concessional terms which are undertaken by official agencies. Mostly, the countries that receive foreign aid are usually developing countries. Poverty is the main focus of giving the foreign aid. This situation always happened to many countries due to the conditions where the people live and from that it will show the quality of living is poor among the people. Foreign aid is given to poor countries that having a limited