Tuesday 2018-11-20

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‘NOT EVEN DONALD TRUMP CAN WISH GLOBALISATION AWAY’

By Hlengiwe Ndlovu | 2018-02-14

NOT even American President Donald Trump’s apparent efforts of watering down globalisation can succeed as this phenomenon is here to stay, Professor Paul Kibuuka, who is currently an Associate Professor and Head of Economics and Public Finance at the University of South Africa (UNISA), and former Managing Director of the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) said on Monday.

He was speaking in a Public Private Partnership in MSMEs and Project Finance seminar held at the Royal Swazi Sun Hotel where he is lead facilitator.

The seminar, which was organised by the Micro Finance Unit, is also being attended by participants from a broad cross section of public and private organisations.

 Professor Kibuuka said that Africa was evidently on a globalisation path especially since the 1990s when the continent began to experience economic growth of four per cent on average.

Prior to the continent’s growth path, he said in the 1970s, when he was still a teen, he had watched Africa crumble across all fronts including the political and economic spheres.

He said instability was caused by the lack of capacity among African leaders who simply arose to power due to coups.

“However, the late 1980s and 90s ushered in leaders with fiscal discipline and respect for national budgets.

“Also, policies stimulating economic activity were introduced,” he said, adding that at around the same period, the continent began to experience a rise in the middle class which resulted in increased household incomes.

“The spurring malls we see all around are not for fun, they are a response to growth in consumption patterns as the continent now has an increased middle class,” he said.

Meanwhile, Professor Kibuuka pointed out that one of the effects of globalisation on the continent was a surge and demand for African commodities as countries such as China, India and the United States of America also grew at very fast rates and required goods from Africa.

“The demand side of African commodities was taken care of but not the supply side,” he said. Concerning PPPs, Professor Kibuuka, who has worked on a number of such initiatives pointed that the public and private sectors need to come together across many sectors such as health, education and agriculture for meaningful progress and development to be achieved.

He highlighted the major sectors for priority PPPs in MSMEs as being agriculture, energy, health and construction.

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