Mechanisms of - Generalitat de .Mechanisms of Neo-colonialism Current French and British influence

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  • ICIP WORKING PAPERS:2011/6

    Mechanisms of Neo-colonialismCurrent French and British influence

    in Cameroon and Ghana

    Diana Haag

    GRAN VIA DE LES CORTS CATALANES 658, BAIX08010 BARCELONA (SPAIN)T. +34 93 554 42 70 | F. +34 93 554 42 80ICIP@GENCAT.CAT | WWW.ICIP.CAT

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  • Mechanisms of Neo-colonialismCurrent French and British influence

    in Cameroon and Ghana

    Diana Haag

    Institut Catal Internacional per la PauBarcelona, December 2011

  • Institut Catal Internacional per la PauGran Via de les Corts Catalanes 658, baixos 08010 BarcelonaT. +34 93 554 42 70 | F. +34 93 554 42 80recerca.icip@gencat.cat | http://www.icip.cat

    EditorsJavier Alcalde and Rafael Grasa

    Editorial BoardPablo Aguiar, Laia Balcells, Alfons Barcel, Gema Collantes-Celador, Cateri-na Garcia, Abel Escrib, Tica Font, Antoni Pigrau, Xavier Pons, Alejandro Pozo, Mnica Sabata, Jaume Saura, Josep Maria Terricabras and Lonie Van Tongeren

    Graphic DesignFundaci Tam-Tam

    Typesseting and printingtona, S.L. / gama, sl

    ISSN2013-5793 (online edition)2013-5785 (paper edition)

    DLB-38.039-2009

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    THE AU THOR

    Diana Haag holds a Bachelors degree in Translation and recently completed her Masters in International Relations at the Barcelona Ins titute for International Studies (IBEI). This paper is based on her Masters dissertation, which was supervised by Rafael Grassa, profes-sor of international relations at the Universitat Autnoma de Barcelo-na. She has done considerable travel in Africa and spent a year work-ing on development projects in South Africa. She is currently looking forward to broaden her professional experience in projects in Latin America.

    ABS TRAC T

    Over the past 50 years, the concept of neo-colonialism has become central to the debate of politicians and activists in order to explain on-going dependences of former colonies, yet without a consensus on its exact meaning and its measurement being developed. This working paper aims at operationalising the concept of neo-colonialism in order to enable an approximate measurement of its existence in a given country. To do so, a conceptual framework covering criteria of eco-nomic, political, financial and military influence of the former colonial power on its ex-colony is established and applied to two case studies - Cameroon and Ghana. The paper finds that France does preserve a neo-colonial relationship with Cameroon in all terms, while Britain only maintains economic influence and a slight financial control over Ghana. It more generally identifies a trend towards a multilateralisa-tion and privatisation of the relations and considers the conceptual framework as reasonably functional.

    Key words: Imperialism, Colonies, Politic Dependency, France, Britain, Cameroon, Ghana

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    RESUmEnA lo largo de los ltimos 50 aos, el concepto de neocolonialismo ha ad-quirido una importancia central en los debates entre polticos y activistas sobre las dependencias que todava atenazan a las antiguas colonias. Este working paper tiene el objetivo de operativizar el concepto de neocolonial-ismo para permitirnos medir si este fenmeno tiene presencia en un pas determinado. Con este propsito, se plantea un marco conceptual que in-cluye indicadores sobre la influencia econmica, poltica, financiera y mili-tar de las antiguas potencias coloniales sobre sus excolonias, y que se aplica a Camern y Ghana. El artculo descubre que Francia conserva con Ca me-rn una relacin neocolonial en todos los sentidos, mientras que el Reino Unido solamente mantiene sobre Ghana una influencia econmica y un ligero control financiero. En ge ne ral, este paper identifica una tendencia hacia la multilateralizacin y la privatizacin de las relaciones, y estima que el marco conceptual resulta razonablemente funcional.

    Palabras clave: Imperialismo, Colonias, Dependencia poltica, Francia, Inglaterra, Camern, Ghana

    RESUmAl llarg dels ltims 50 anys, el concepte de neocolonialisme ha adquirit una importncia central en el debats entre poltics i activistes sobre les depend-ncies que encara afecten les antigues colnies. Aquest working paper t lobjectiu doperativitzar el concepte de neocolonialisme per permetrens mesurar si aquest fenomen s present en un pas determinat. Per fer-ho es planteja un marc conceptual que inclou indicadors sobre la influncia econmica, poltica, financera i militar de les antigues potncies colonials sobre les excolnies, i que saplica al Camerun i Ghana. Larticle descobreix que Frana conserva una relaci neocolonial amb el Camerun en tots els sentits, mentre que el Regne Unit noms mant sobre Ghana una influn-cia econmica i un lleuger control financer. En general, aquest paper iden-tifica una tendncia cap a la multilateralitzaci i la privatitzaci de les rela-cions, i estima que el marc conceptual s raonablement funcional.

    Paraules clau: Imperialisme, Colnies, Dependncia poltica, Frana, Anglaterra, Camerun, Ghana

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    COn TEn TS

    InTRODUCTIOn 7

    1. THEORETICAL BACKGROUnD 8 1.1. THE COnCEPT OF nEO-COLOnIALISm 9

    1.2. COnCEPTUAL FRAmEWORK 12

    2. HISTORICAL BACKGROUnD 15 2.1. FRAnCE AnD CAmEROOn 15

    2.2. GHAnA AnD BRITAIn 18

    2.3. FRAnCE AnD BRITAIn 21

    3. THE CURREnT PRESEnCE OF nEO-COLOnIALISm 21 3.1. CAmEROOn 21

    3.1.1. ECOnOmIC InFLUEnCE 22

    3.1.2. POLITICAL InTERFEREnCE 23

    3.1.3. FInAnCIAL DEPEnDEnCE 24

    3.1.4. mILITARY PRESEnCE 26

    3.1.5. OUTCOmE 27

    3.2 GHAnA 28

    3.2.1. ECOnOmIC InFLUEnCE 28

    3.2.2. POLITICAL InTERFEREnCE 29

    3.2.3. FInAnCIAL DEPEnDEnCE 30

    3.2.4. mILITARY PRESEnCE 31

    3.2.5. OUTCOmE 32

    4. PATTERnS OF FREnCH AnD BRITISH InFLUEnCE 33 4.1. DIFFEREnCES 33

    4.2. SImILARITIES 35

    5. COnCLUSIOn 37

    REFEREnCES 39

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    InTRODUCT IOn

    In the 60s, when the majority of African countries achieved inde-pendence, the continents future seemed prosperous in the long term. The newly independent countries disposed over huge reserves of all kind of raw materials, favourable natural and geographical condi-tions and a population looking forward to finally be its own master. However, despite all efforts, 50 years later the continents situation is not significantly better and the Western development aid failed to achieve positive results on a big scale (Nkrumah, 1965). Over the past decades, an increasing number of writers and activists have started to denounce what through Ghanas first president Kwame Nkrumah be-came known as neo-colonialism; the existence of ongoing influence of the former colonial powers, which persists after independence and in many cases is responsible for the excessive exploitation of African resources and inhibits an independent political policy (Martin, 1985).

    Since then, the concept of neo-colonialism has enjoyed much po-litical attention coming to denounce a multitude of different forms of dependence and interference. However, no consensus on its defini-tion and particularly on its measurement has been developed.

    The aim of this dissertation is thus to explore the possibility of ope-rationalising the concept of neo-colonialism academically in order to attempt measuring its presence in different countries at different times. The dissertation departs from the hypothesis that it is possible to create a model which allows measuring the presence of neo-colonia-lism in a given country to a reasonable degree.

    The methodology of the analysis will consist in establishing a concep-tual framework with criteria which, if fulfilled, significantly restrict a coun-trys independence in an economic and political dimension, and in apply-ing it to two case studies. This, in order to analyse and compare the two cases with regard to their current economic, political, financial and mil-itary dependence, as well as to evaluate the functionality of the framework.

    The analysis will focus on the influence of the major former colonial powers in Africa, namely France and Britain. The two chosen cases are

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    Cameroon and Ghana due to their lasting political and economical sta-bility and their similarity in size, location, geography, presence of raw materials, time of independence, size of population and GDP/capita. Moreover, Ghana constitutes an interesting case study as it was the first African country to reach independence and its first president was one of the leading figures in denouncing neo-colonialism. Cameroon on the other hand is among the francophone countries which maintain the closest relations with France, and further constitutes a good exam-ple of the past competition between France and Britain in Africa.

    The study will focus on the current presence of neo-colonialism, an-alysing the period of 2004 until 2011, which corresponds to the past and the current political terms in Ghana (4 year terms) and the cur-rent term in Cameroon (7 year term).

    The dissertation will first provide a brief theoretical background re-viewing the main meaning and evolution of the concept of neo-coloni-alism and establishing the conceptual framework that will serve to analyse the two cases. The second chapter will propose a short histori-cal background of the two countries past. The third part will apply the conceptual framework to the two case studies, providing an analysis of the current neo-colonial practises in Cameroon and Ghana since 2004. Finally, the fourth part will compare the French and the British neo-colonial strategies and provide conclusions about the functiona-lity o