Arab youth on Chinese payroll
One of the root causes of the uprisings in North Africa last year was unemployment among a large part of the population, the youth. Their unemployment rate in the region is 24%, and notably higher than in other parts of Africa where only 12% of young people don’t have a job. Dealing with this problem requires coherent national socio-economic policies by North African governments and one way of facing the challenge is securing ‘smart’ foreign direct investment - FDI that brings economic benefits and also guarantees job creation and skills transfer. A new paper published by the African Development Bank and co-authored by ECDPM’s Faten Aggad-Clerx looks at the role of China in reducing youth unemployment
in North Africa. Two case studies from Algeria and Egypt provide a comparison on how Chinese investments have contributed to job creation in both countries. The paper provides policy recommendations to North African governments.
More regional cooperation needed for food security
Many African countries have programmes to boost their agricultural productivity to ensure food security. Through the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), such national efforts could be strengthened by complementary policies at the regional and continental levels. In a series of Discussion Papers, ECDPM assesses the progress toward developing and implementing CAADP regional agricultural strategies
. Analysis focuses on the major bottlenecks and opportunities for four African Regional Economic Communities, and the papers also identify potential synergies of CAADP with other regional programmes relevant for food security, such as in trade, infrastructure and natural resources. A further paper on cross cutting messages from all regional studies is forthcoming and ECDPM will co-organise a donor meeting
on CAADP regional policies in Brussels next week.
“Africa can embark on industrialization, just as China and India”
An issues paper
by the African Union Commission and UNECA, prepared for the upcoming annual meeting of African Finance Ministers
, examines key institutional and policy factors that are shaping Africa’s economic growth. It highlights the opportunities for the continent to become “a pole of global growth”, but to unleash this potential, African countries need to effectively address a set of constraints. Urgent and determined action of leaders is needed, for example when it comes to providing critical infrastructure or human capital development, the paper says.
Job prospects fail to convince the Pacific on EPA
The interim Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between the EU and Papua New Guinea (PNG) and Fiji signed in 2009 includes a special derogation to the standard rules of origin for processed fish as a means of helping the Pacific generate income and employment. A recent meeting
of the Pacific-EU EPA Trade Committee discussed the implementation
of this rule based on a report
examining its development effects. Up to now, PNG made only limited use of the derogation, but five projects that should create 53,000 jobs by 2016 are in the pipeline. The PNG government indicated that it is considering whether to expand the trade agreement with the EU to issues such as services and investment on its own or collectively with the region. Though, no other Pacific country has as yet requested to join the interim EPA.
Additional articles in the Weekly Compass-Extended Version include:
More recently uploaded resources are available in the Weekly Compass-Extended Version