Looting Africa – Warlords, Smugglers and the Systematic Theft of Africa’s Wealth

The Most Revolutionary Act

The Looting Machine: Warlords, Smugglers and the Systematic Theft of Africa’s Wealth

Tom Burgis

Harper Collins (2017)

Book Review

This book centers around something global economists refer to as the “Dutch curse.” In 1959, the discovery of oil in the Netherlands led to massive unemployment outside the oil industry. A big increase in dollars generated by oil exports caused major inflation in the local currency. This made imports cheaper than locally produced goods, shutting down hundreds of Dutch businesses and putting thousands out of work.

It’s typical of mineral and oil/gas mining everywhere (including here in New Plymouth) that these industries require vast capital investment but employ only small numbers of workers. According to Burgis, it was the “Dutch curse” that resulted in Russian’s oil-fueled criminal oligarchy prior to the rise of Putin. As the continent richest in natural resources, Africa, which has been ruthlessly exploited by multinational corporations, has…

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Comments

  • Mark  On April 8, 2018 at 8:29 pm

    Kaieteur News is one of the best watchdogs to quell corruption in the oil industry, even if the owner of Ogle Airport resorts to nuisance SLAPP lawsuits to scare away critics of the oil contract!

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