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The Illusion of a Marshall Plan for Africa

The Illusion of a Marshall Plan for Africa

On Tuesday May 28th, 2013, the billionaire and philanthropist Mr. Bill Gates attended a Q&A session at the University of New South Wales. During the session, a lady asked him: “Mr. Gates, Dead Aid, a book by Dambisa Moyo, illustrates that giving more aid to Africa over the course of the years did not alleviate poverty, instead it kept the economy crippled with governments asking for more aid. This fluke made a cycle of aid giving which resulted in nothing productive and it has not been used to solve the immediate problems and the money is not being used to make businesses sustainable in Africa. What’s the foundation’s view in this regard?” To which Mr. Gates responded, “Books like that are promoting evil”. Mr. Gates’ sound bite sheds light upon aid as a topic of controversy: in his creed, aid is humane, virtuous and will do the global poor a world of good while anti-aid literature is evil. From Tibor Mende and his famous book "From aid to the re-colonization" (bestseller in the 70s) to Dambisa Moyo and her book "Dead Aid", the issue of assistance to poor countries has been much talked about. Between the fifteen billion dollars transferred to Europe under the Marshall Plan and the thousand billion dollars sucked up by the sub-Saharan Africa since independence, we have come to understand that a poorly designed assistance automatically produces state-aid recipients. In this paper we will endeavor to weigh the geopolitical and geo-economic impacts of aid and demonstrate why aid, presumably an altruistic deed for the benefit of the poor and the needy, has sparked such a hot debate.


Abdelhamid Nechad - Professorat ESCA, Ecole de Management, Morocco
Meryem Bahha - Phd from Abdelmalek Essaadi University
Mohammed Rhalma - Professor at Abdelmalek Essaadi University

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