Trade Not Aid We passionately believe that Trade is the only viable strategy for Africa's economic and social development.

Africa has received over US$ 500 billion in Aid over the last 50 years and yet despite these huge inflows, the continent remains mired in poverty, disease, and systemic corruption.

There are many problems in using Aid as a vehicle for development. This is because handouts have never been an effective way to achieve economic transformation. There are several reasons for this:
  1. Aid is really not Aid. Most Aid programs are poorly structured and constrained by conditionalities. This undermines the independence of recipient countries and the management of their economic affairs.
  2. Aid Erodes accountability. Providing Aid through the governments of poor countries erodes accountability because governments become more accountable to donors than to their own citizens.
  3. Aid leads to a chronic dependency on donors. Because poor countries are dependent on donor handouts they fail to prioritize the generation of domestic resources. This creates a chronic dependency on Aid, stifles creativity and undermines the dignity of people.
The case for Trade as a driver for economic growth has been proved in history and is one of the most fundamental tenets of economic theory. In the literature of development economics, handouts do not feature as building blocks for prosperity. Therefore the idea that Aid can be a solution to Africa's development challenges flies in the face of the evidence of what drives growth, creates jobs, and brings prosperity to our societies.

If we take coffee as an example, this is the second most traded commodity after oil. Out of the total global coffee business valued at approximately US$144bn per year (2008), all coffee growing countries receive only US $15bn for their green unprocessed beans. The rest of the US129bn remains in the importing (developed) countries that add value to the coffee that they themselves have not grown.

As an example, 1 lb of green coffee will earn a Ugandan coffee farmer approximately US$ 1, whilst roasters in developed countries will be able to sell the same coffee for approximately $8. This means that we are losing US$7 per Ib of added value, simply because we are not roasting and packing our own coffees. Africa has been gifting this level of value to the developed world for decades.

Good African is proud to be the very first African owned Company to break this mold by setting up our own roasting and packing factory and selling direct to supermarkets in developed countries.
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