Free «The Effects of War and Peace on Foreign Aid in Ethiopia» Essay

The Effects of War and Peace on Foreign Aid in Ethiopia

Ethiopia has emerged as a locus in international affairs in Africa due to the fact that it has been experiencing continued problems of both hunger and poverty. It is one of the nations in Africa that is most dependent on foreign aid from the United States, the United Kingdom and the World Bank. Most importantly, Ethiopia has continuously been receiving on average over $3.5 billion from international donors in the recent periods. This is a representation of over 50% of the nation’s national budget (Bermeo, 2011). Moreover, the development aid has emerged as a vital element towards funding the Ethiopian government through growth as well as transformational plans. However, war and peace have had strong effects on the distribution of foreign aid in Ethiopia. There have been both negative and positive effects of war and peace on the foreign aid distribution in the nation over the recent years. It has appeared that war of Ethiopia against the neighboring country, Eritrea, has had negative impacts on the nation’s economic development (Fleck & Kilby, 2010). This paper explores the effects of both war and peace on foreign aid distribution from industrialized nations to developing nations considering a special case of Ethiopia.

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The war between Eritrea and Ethiopia lasted for two years and forced the Ethiopian government to spend more than $2.9 billion. This is due to the fact that the Ethiopian government was forced to build on ways to mobilize human power, financial as well as material resources in order to assist with the war control. War is a strong hindrance of foreign aid from developing nations, such as the United States. Ethiopian communities have been hugely depending on foreign aid from the United States. However, the war outbreak in Ethiopia rendered it hard for effective distribution of foreign aid to some communities suffering from diseases and poverty (Juselius, Møller & Tarp, 2013). Abundant foreign aid from the United States cannot reach the whole of Ethiopia due to the fact that some sections are blocked by those fighting against the nation hence making it difficult for this aid to reach all people of Ethiopia. These barriers also prevent the United States from conducting businesses or even distributing items that can benefit the people of Ethiopia. For instance, more than $580 million have been dedicated as foreign aid by the United States to help Africa. It is clear that this money would not be evenly distributed to nations struck by war in Africa (Fleck & Kilby, 2010). Most importantly, a variety of food items and other materials have been siphoned by hungry government officials that have personal interests. War leaves a nation in critical conditions, whereby members of the government have corrupt minds and personal interests that leave communities malnourished and without peace. This hinders even the distribution of foreign aid to such nations.

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Peace has been a vital element in the effective distribution of foreign aid from developed nations. Ethiopia is one of the nations that have benefited from foreign aid due to the peaceful incidences in some parts of the country. In this case, foreign aid is effectively distributed since there are only rare cases of corruption in peaceful parts (Cullather, 2012). Foreign aid has also appeared to have played a pivotal role towards development of nations such as Bangladesh or India. An evidence that peace can assist in effective distribution of foreign aid is that of Bangladesh, whereby 100% of the nation’s budget is highly dependent on foreign aid (Bermeo, 2011). Some developing nations have been striving to maintain peace despite the fact that most of their sectors are lowly developed hence facing poverty and low economic development rates. This has forced them to seek on foreign aid that has been allocated to different sectors of their economies.

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Most importantly, the Ethiopian government has played a huge role in distribution of foreign aid to various parts that have been struck by drought and diseases in the nation as well as for the entire economic development. The Ethiopian government has experienced strong and wide-based development over the last decade that has averaged at 10.6% every year as compared to the regional average development rate at 4.9% (Juselius, Møller & Tarp, 2013). The government has attempted to develop both the service and the agricultural sectors that have accounted for its economic development. For the most part of the 20th century, the government of Ethiopia has taken significant steps as it took power, since it has led with ambitious reforms in attempts to initiate democratic system of decentralizing authority and governance (Jackson, 2013). Moreover, the Ethiopian government has developed a five-year development plan referred to as the Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP) that has been geared to foster a wide-based development.

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In this case, the GTP envisions rapid economic growth that has targeted a growth rate of 11% every year. It is also focused towards ensuring the doubling of agricultural production in Ethiopia along with an increased contribution to the industrial sector including textiles, cement, leather products, and sugar production. The government has also been focused on the improvement of its energy sectors through increasing its power generation capacity in the nation. This has created employment for people across the nation hence eradicating poverty levels at an increasing rate (Jackson, 2013). The government has been striving to effectively use the foreign aid to foster the nation’s competitiveness as well as develop employment levels that are aimed at achieving stable and effective macroeconomic development. However, the application of foreign aid has not been fully implemented in all parts of the nation since much of the aid goes to the urban areas and this has neglected some communities in Ethiopia living in the rural areas.

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