Africa’ young generation has the potential to climb out of poverty and to emerge from the bottom to the mainstream of the global economy. Equipped with smartphones and Internet access a growing number of young people will new ways to crack the continent’s long-standing problems.

 

- What are your ideas to build new and better connections with Africa?

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First of all I want to express my opinion that I find the title very arrogant. I am thinking: Why should Europe change Africa? Where does Europe get the right first of all to consider itself in a position of being able to fix Africa? Unless what is really meant here is to appropriate Africa on the service of Europe. Think about it for a moment, for instance: "Should Africa change Europe?" I find that this title is enforcing the stereotype that Africa is poor or that something is lacking in that continent. First of all Africa is an extremely rich continent in resources which get used and exploited from the Global North. It is the constant exploitation and interventions which are actually harming Africa. It is this global viewpoint which has divided the world into the developed world and the developing world. And by this viewpoint forced by dominating powers, the classified 'developing' world is constantly striving to reach this status (of being developed), what actually it is by the neo-liberal system itself not possible, because it is a system not build in equality. If Europe wants to really do something useful for both Africa and the world my ideas what I would suggest are: 1. stop immediately the Food Dumping what they are doing in countries in Africa which destroys the local food market there. Farmers are not able to sell their products because the leftover food from Europe gets sold by far less than the local prices. I think this is a point where Europe can take a stand and ban this activity , which beside the consequences mentioned above it is also not environmentally friendly. 2. Europe should not allow that European companies can do land-grabbing in Africa. 3. Europe could also make sure that European companies operating in Africa, are not exploitative, make sure there is no child labor and also respect the health standards which they would respect in Europe. This would be some first ideas I would have . And lastly I want to say that we should really understand, that the problem is not Africa. The problem is that Europe thinks it should or can or has the right to change Africa. It is a sign and stand of supremacy which Europe in my opinion does not and should not have.
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The solution of Africa’s real problems must start with ourselves. As an European citizen and with respect to our history it is difficult and not my motivation to pretend what the Africans should do or need to change. In my view, it is a moral and historical responsibility that we carry. We analyzed, researched and traveled. Some of us know about the people and their problems. We know the reasons why many parts of Africa are very difficult to develop. As long as we face each other globally as competitors, there will be always winner and losers. And you do not help the losers by trying to integrate them into a system where the most powerful and the winner make the rules. Some of the points we need to find solutions for change: - Fair trade instead of free trade - Stop destroying local markets and people’s basis of life by importing waste meat, milk powder and others - Create conditions that increase local value addition in the countries and stop the exploitation of the continents resources on which our wealth is partly based - Partnerships at eye level instead of classical development aid and profit-driven technology transfer We must take responsibility for our actions. It is the developed and industrialized countries that are responsibly for the anthropogenic climate change and it is the developing countries which are suffer the most from these effects. Only when we really tackle our own tasks we can discuss problems in Africa like a distorted world view caused by social media platforms or prosperity theology. We are all from the same wood and sitting in the same boat called earth. What I do affects you and what you do affects me. We must understand these dependencies and use them for human life of all kind of humans all over the world.
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I will begin with saying this: I am a mixed person, half European and half African, so this issue of European-African relations is very close to my heart. To get to the question: we must first understand that Europe, cannot and should not try to “fix” Africa. This sort of excess outside interference is often not helpful and can be harmful. We can help African nations “fix” themselves. Let us not think about handouts as if African countries were some beggars on the street but lets treat with them fairly. First - Do away with unfair tariffs. For example, there are high tariffs on processed cocoa products, This means that African producers/farmers can only sell raw cocoa to Europe if they want a profit, but processed cocoa products sell for a higher profit on the market so lowering the tariffs would help them create a new industry in Africa and would supply us with cheaper chocolate. Second: Lending for private businesses. There are projects already around the world for microcredit style loans to help build entrepreneurship. Giving out “free” money doesn’t incentivise productivity but microloans do. Giving loans with low interest (interest equal to or slightly above inflation) will incentivise the recipients to make good of their business which will increase African productivity and wealth. 3. Low interest Infrastructure loans to African nations and civil engineering training and assistance from European civil engineers and teachers. 4. Education assitance in general. 5. More trade deals with African nations in general. 6. Penalising companies that cause trouble in African nations (See. News of Shell hiring soldiers to harrass civilians). 7. An EU-African anti-corruption agency or plan where large streams of money to or from Africa are investigated for their origin.
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In order to build new and better connections with Africa we must first tackle the problems at hand which are: - Lack of education - Corrupt leaders who are stuck in the dark ages and suppress their citizens especially women. - The lack of attention given to Africa has caused it to become neglected. - Human trafficking and terrorism My proposals are: - Build more schools for children to attend and learn showing they can achieve their dreams - Shine a light more on Africa and expose the problems that are at hand along with solutions to help solve them and put pressure on the leaders to deal with the issues at hand. - Push for corrupt leaders to stand down or move for impeachment on the grounds of corruption and withholding public funds for their own personal use. - Once we clean up Africa's political system there will be more money to fund the important things such as education, food and living expenses - More need to be done about human trafficking and there needs to be measure in place that will protect the victims of traffickers and see the traffickers prosecuted and put an end to this crisis. - Terrorism is already being handled as best it can be however I believe if the population are more educated they will be less likely to be radicalised.
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