Search This Blog

Friday, 15 July 2016

Reviewing Mark Curtis' new report: The New Colonialism, Britain's Scramble for Africa

Colin Todhunter
Global Research


Africa is facing a new and devastating colonial invasion driven by a determination to plunder the natural resources of Africa, especially its strategic energy and mineral resources. That's the message from a damning new report from War On Want 'The New Colonialism: Britain's scramble for Africa's energy and mineral resources' that highlights the role of the British government in aiding and abetting the process.

Written and researched by Mark Curtis, the report reveals the degree to which British companies now control Africa's key mineral resources, notably gold, platinum, diamonds, copper, oil, gas and coal. It documents how 101 companies listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) - most of them British - have mining operations in 37 sub-Saharan African countries and collectively control over $1 trillion worth of Africa's most valuable resources.

The UK government has used its power and influence to ensure that British mining companies have access to Africa's raw materials. The report exposes the long-term involvement of the British government (Labour and Conservative) to influence and control British companies' access to raw materials. Access has been secured through a revolving door between the political establishment and British mining companies, with at least five British government officials taking up seats on the boards of mining companies operating in Africa.

Augmented by WTO rules, Britain's leverage over Africa's political and economic systems has resulted in a company like Glencore being able to to show revenues 10 times that of the gross domestic product (GDP) of Zambia.

Under the guise of the UK helping Africa in its economic development (a continuation of the colonial paternal narrative), $134 billion has flowed into the continent each year in the form of loans, foreign investment and aid, while British government has enabled the extraction of $192 billion from Africa mainly in profits by foreign companies, tax dodging and the cost of adapting to climate change.

The report highlights the roles played by major companies, such as Rio Tinto, Glencore and Vedanta. From the displacement of people and killings to labour rights violations, environmental degradation and tax dodging, Africa appears to have become a free for all. In only a minority of mining operations do African governments have a shareholding in projects. And even if they do, it tends to be small at 5-20%.


Read more
 

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...