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Imf And World Bank In Africa

            "The problem in Africa is not so much that development has failed as that it never really got started"(Ake 40). World Bank and IMF structural adjustment policies have caused 36 countries in sub-Saharan Africa to make many state owned companies and services privatized, downsized civil services, and cut and restructured health and education expenditures in an area where more than half of the population lives in poverty. What structural adjustment had done, instead, was to establish recession and stagnation in Africa. The money the IMF and the World Bank lend to debtor countries comes with strings attached. These strings come in the form of policy prescriptions called "structural adjustment policies." These policies called SAPs, require debtor governments to open their economies to infiltration by foreign corporations, giving them access to country's workers and environment on discount. Recent protests against the IMF and the World Bank have highlighted the way the institutions put the interests of wealthy corporations in the developed world above the interests of the world's poor majority. Structural adjustment policies mean all around privatization of public utilities and publicly owned industries. They also mean the cutting of government budgets, causing cutbacks in spending on health care and education; as well as focusing resources on growing export crops for industrial countries rather than supporting family farms and growing food for local communities. Structural adjustment programs are a failure. Studies have shown that adjustment programs brought negative effects on growth. The World Bank had been one of the leading supporters of structural adjustment. The IMF when it came to dealing with developing countries, IMF's process has too often focused on narrow macroeconomic objectives at the expense of broader human development. The World Bank and IMF have become immensely powerful institutions in Africa due to the economic crisis that hit the developing world in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

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