Eradicating Poverty in Africa

Charles expounds the benefits of private investment as one way to help eradicate poverty in Africa

Mr. Walker: Does the hon. Gentleman agree that the rule of law and property rights in South Africa have encouraged private investment, and have made that country a beacon of hope in Africa? Before he dismisses private investment entirely, perhaps he should consider what it has done for South Africa over the past decade.

Pete Wishart: I thank the hon. Gentleman for those remarks, and I agree with them. In some instances, private investment is exactly the right way to go, but the one-size-fits-all approach of western Governments demanding liberalisation and privatisation is a step too far. The right hon. Member for Oldham, West and Royton mentioned the example of Uganda and the privatisation without regulation that costs that nation millions of pounds. It gets worse-to qualify for the next round of debt relief, the Ugandan Government must sell their water supplies, agricultural services and commercial banks, probably at great loss to that nation again. "