Economical, Political and Social Challenges for Security in Africa


I would like to thank fort he generous invitation of “Centre d’Etudes Strategique” of Morocco. And without losing much time, I would like to make my presentation....

I would like to thank fort he generous invitation of “Centre d’Etudes Strategique“ of Morocco. And without losing much time, I would like to make my presentation.
Today, « poverty » is one of the main reasons of migration, terrorism and human rights violations. Although Africa is an important source of groundwater and surface potentials this continent is unable to convert it to wealth and security because of its inability to transfer this potential to economy. Firstly, groundwater resources in Africa must be extracted and then they must be processed and be presented to the international trade. So, firstly it is necessary to make investments in education. Also, it should be the fight against corruption and African countries should be encouraged to be able to reach a democratic multi-party regime.

The many countries on the African continent, with a population of young people, are making significant progress towards achieving their aim of planned development and they are on the way to resolve the political, economic and social problems in these areas rapidly. Indeed, to achieve such targets in areas under the umbrella of the African Union need to be developed with a close co-operation among the member countries.

The daily income of more than 40% of the population is below $ 1 in Africa and it takes a considerably low share of 2.4% from the world trade. Also, it is significant to highlight that the income distribution is very unbalanced. Especially as a consequence of such indicators, sub-Saharan African countries stay too behind average of world economy. By increasing economic growth rates in the entire continent, sustainable growth and new areas of employment is needed to be created.

On the other hand, widespread migrations that are caused by violence increase the risk of food scarcity and thus cause the emergence of deadly famines. Conflicts in rural areas trigger mass migration and this migration causes the increase of unemployment, crime rates, environmental crisis and widespread disease risk.
However, it is possible also to express the promising developments. Malavi has experienced large-scale famine but it overcame this disaster by its systemic policy. So Malavi has succeeded to reach its own designed aim of general nutritional level in the countries. Malavi is an important example for other countries. Yet today, Zimbabwe which has been subjected to heavy criticism because of its undemocratic power, combats against drought and famine as a part of its national strategy and the policies that followed in South Africa as a part of the regional strategy.

In addition, many countries provide freedom and democratic management without resorting to totalitarian systems. Principle of national sovereignty is passing day by day to representatives of the people, respecting to the principles sovereignty of democracy and national sovereignty, freedom and the number of the parties are not now an exception; Africa’s economy is going better day by day. For 4 years economic activities registered 5% of growth. Macro economic cycle environment has been improved and stability has been provided. After the drought which has hit the agricultural production in 2003 in south, central and eastern parts of Africa, agricultural production has made strides again and thanks to increased security it has made a jump. In 2004, North and West Africa locust invasion has caused less damage than expected. Despite the rapid rise in oil prices, inflation declined to a considerable level. Commercial and public finance balance, particularly in oil and mineral exporters has improved in the countries of African. However these changes constituted little improvement.

The development of the agricultural sector is among priority issues in terms of ensuring economic growth and food security. Undoubtedly increasing investments in this area may be considered as important for achieving these targets. Regional Economic Communities and the New Partnership for Africa’s Development, known as the short name NEPAD give priority to agriculture for sector’s development. For example, NEPAD developed in this direction that the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Program (CAADP) and with help of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) $ 250 billion investment is planned from 2002 to 2015. In 2004, contribution to gross national product growth of agriculture sector in Africa varies considerably in the continent’s sub-regions. In South Africa, especially the agricultural sector remains under of 8%, whereas 33% of this figure arrives in East Africa.


2000 2001 2002 2003 2004
North Africa 15.3 16 15.8 16.3 15.1
West Africa 28.4 29.6 29.7 27.1 21
Middle Africa 25.7 26.4 26.7 27.2 27.3
East Africa 35.9 35 32.6 32.4 33
South Africa 7.6 7.8 8.3 8 7.8

On the other hand, following various agreements and protocols that have been concluded with external partners, it is significant that a large number of agricultural experts were sent to the continent and Private Agricultural Technology Centers were established.

Increasing investments in the agricultural sector would increase employment in the regions through the improvement of living standards, and also this event will contribute inevitably to the problem of migration positively. This progress might be explained as the Africans have be transformed from a people in need to partners with the donor countries in the field of agriculture.
Deficiency in infrastructure is the most important obstacles for the development of African countries. Neglected highways, few railway networks, lack of commercial ports, communication and the communication network failure, lack of sewage and water network, the small number of power plants affect millions of Africans and deeply affect people’s health, education, justice, communication and basic services. The continent faces the problem of inadequate infrastructure and it makes the problem of poverty even more profound. 900 million of the population of the continent lives in rural areas. Women and children walk miles to get water and they need to take water from wells.

African continent is in need of serious investments in many areas as electricity, transportation, communication etc. China is in efforts to increase its investments on economic relations with Africa since 2000. In 2007 these investments have reached 4.5 billion dollars. In the same year, the value of G-8 countries investments is around 3.6 billion dollars.
Now I would like to mention some points Turkish African recent economic relations. Turkey spends as much effort to reinforce ties with the African continent as it does with Europe. Turkey considers Africa with its 53 countries and 905 million people as a new potential for trade and investment. As of 2005 the total contracting projects undertaken by Turkish companies reached 15.6 bn. Turkey export to Africa was 2.1 billion in 2003, increasing to 3 billion in 2004 and to 3.6 billion in 2005.

When we talk about security first think which comes to mind is military or police security issues. However, today, global security became more advanced than military or police standpoint and ’threats without enemies’ known as threats such as poverty and pollution should be examined as problems of security studies.

Causes of poverty and pollution are "economic reasons". It is possible to connect the origin of events "economic with violence occurring in the streets, demonstrations, marches and migration that expansive from rural places to where wealth and prosperity growing. For this reason, some experts evaluate social movements.

So in this perspective, participation in social movements is due to correct and provide security realized by individuals who are regarded as entrepreneur and due to close the state’s lack of capacity. As a result we can consider that research field of social movements placed into security field.

Then we can say that, overall world security issues that occur cannot be considered as only military and police perspective. Because until now, neither in Africa nor in other countries to solve security problems was not possible only with military methods.

Today sub-Saharan African Region which is in confusion and instability, forced to refugees to migrate to larger areas. United Nations High Commission for Refugees reported that 6.3 millions are Africans of the 22.3 million refugees worldwide. Under these conditions, to find a solution to the economic and political collapse in 2001 African Heads of State in Africa established "New Partnership for Africa’s Development“ (NEPAD)

The African Heads of State promised for comply the basic principles of right political and economic management in Africa for the development. Essence of NEPAD is restructure of the relationship between Africa and the developed countries and the eight industrialized countries (G-8) and by way of requital it is obligatory to comply with norms of democratic and free market.

Against all odds, Africa continues to develop. The interest of the international community vis á vis these developments has been increasing in a remarkable way. The continent signals movements of real change.
In 2007, the 7th World Social Forum was held in Kenya. Researcher Samir Amin participated in the meeting expressed that the democracy which was suggested by Bush and his team, was put to test in Iraq. He also expressed that "In the continent of Africa life passed with struggling of government. The country where there was a struggle against the colonial administration has been replaced with the fight against their own governments. We saw the democracy that Bush and his team suggested to us. We can organize the real democracy from Northern Hemisphere to Southern Hemisphere with the aid of organizing the resistance. » by this observation he abstracted the importance of Africa for other countries because of its productivity and potentials.

In addition to strengthening strategies for accelerating growth, achieving broad-based development must remain a priority of national economic policy. Countries still in conflict face even bigger challenges in development, creating new facilities and poverty reduction. Insecurity in these countries also threatens economic activity and political stability in neighboring countries and the regions. National, regional, and international efforts must be initiated and sustained to achieve peaceful settlement of conflicts and establish institutional mechanisms of democratic governance as a way of preventing future conflicts.
In conclusion, I want to express my own opinion. I think the continent must stand on his feet just by a continental strategy. Future of African countries depends on Africans. I know my own history very well and I can say that the real democracy and the other things that we want just should be provided by its own people.
The real requirement of the continent which were exploited in his history just as Turkey, is to connect and stand together against the imperialism.

Thank you for your kind attention.

Source: Economic Commission for Africa and African Union, Economic Report on Africa, Accelerating Africa’s Development through Diversification, Economic Commission for Africa, Addis Ababa,2007
Fosu and Collier 2005
TASAM Afrika Ens. Direktör Y. Ufuk TEPEBAŞ
Prof. Dr. Samir Amin
Economic Report on Africa 2007 (Economic Commision for Africa )
Recent Economic Performance in Africa
United Nations, Africa Renewal, United Nations Department of Public Information, Vol. 21, No. 2, July 2007
James Shikwati, "Doğu Afrika’daki Ekonomik Gelişim ve Kalkınma Yardımları", Doç. Dr. Ahmet Kavas, Ufuk Tepebaş (Ed.), Sahra altı Afrika içinde, TASAM Yayınları, 2007, s.108

First symposium of the African Federation for Strategic Studies
Marrakech from January 28th to 30th 2010

Theme: «Governance and security sector in Africa.»

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Continents ( 5 Fields )
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TASAM Africa 0 149
TASAM Asia 0 236
TASAM Europe 0 44
TASAM Latin America & Carribea... 0 34
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Regions ( 4 Fields )
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TASAM Balkans 0 93
TASAM Middle East 0 62
TASAM Black Sea and Caucasus 0 16
TASAM Mediterranean 0 7
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TASAM Türkiye 0 229

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