Monday, June 3, 2013

East Asia's Lessons for Africa

Nobel laureate Joseph E. Stiglitz posted a piece titled "East Asia's Lessons for Africa" on Project Syndicate 3 June 2013.  He suggests Africa draw lessons from East Asia to bring it out of poverty.  Stiglitz notes the economic record for Africa in recent years has been spotty.  While five of the world's ten fastest-growing countries with a population of more than 10 million between 2007 and 2011 have been in Africa, others have done poorly.  He counts among the best performers Ethiopia, where GDP grew about 10 percent annually as of the end of 2011, and Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda where annual output has grown by more than 6 percent for a decade or more. 

Stiglitz disparages the so-called neo-liberal "Washington Consensus," arguing that Japan and other East Asian countries followed a different course.  African countries will benefit from reflecting on their successes and failures.

Stiglitz falls into one familiar trap while measuring poverty in Africa by using the $1.25 per day earnings limit.  This dollar scale does not include about half of Africa's informal economy, much of which is based on barter.  

No comments:

Post a Comment