So what's behind all of this sudden income growth? Is it a story about aid? One prominent Zambian, Dambisa Moyo, has written of her country that "a direct consequence of the aid-driven interventions has been a dramatic descent into poverty. Whereas prior to the 1970s, most economic indicators had been on an upward trajectory, a decade later Zambia lay in economic ruin". In the 1980s, aid to Zambia averaged about 14% of the country's GNI. In the 2000s, a decade of strong growth, the same proportion was 17%. If Zambia's ruin in the 1980s was the result of aid, is Zambia's graduation to middle-income status in the new millennium a sign that aid now works really well?
Of course both the ideas that previous stagnation was all the fault of aid, or current growth was all the result, are ridiculous.
Tuesday, 12 July 2011
Why countries stop being (very) poor
Great article on the drivers behind the move from low-income to middle-income for countries like Zambia and Ghana. Particularly like this bit: