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  • Author: Luke A. Patey
  • Publication Date: 04-2006
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: There is a clear starting point for engaging Multinational Corporations (MNCs) in war-torn societies: understand the factors that determine the behaviour of these enterprises in the instable and insecure environments in which they operate. It is certainly a worthwhile objective considering the immense influence, whether deliberate or not, MNCs have on many civil wars in the developing world. Just as MNCs can act as sources of economic and social development, they can also factor into the reasoning of contemporary civil war.
  • Topic: Economics, Industrial Policy, War
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Stefano Ponte
  • Publication Date: 10-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: Fish exports are the second largest foreign exchange earner in Uganda. When Uganda's fish export industry started to operate in the late 1980s and early 1990s, one may have thought that fish was being turned into gold. From an export value of just over one million US$ in 1990, the mighty Nile Perch had earned the country over 45 million US$ just six years later. But alchemy proved to be more than the quest of the philosophers' stone to change base metals into gold. From 1997 to 2000, the industry experienced a series of import bans, imposed by the EU on grounds of food safety. Despite claims to the contrary, the EU did not provide scientific proof that fish was actually 'unsafe'. Rather, the poor performance of Uganda's regulatory and monitoring system was used as a justification. The 'system', as the characters of an allegory, has no individual personality and is the embodiment of the moral qualities that 'the consumer' expects from 'responsible operators' in the fish sector. Only by fixing this system of regulations and inspections, and by performing the ritual of laboratory testing did the Ugandan industry regain its status as a 'safe' source of fish. Fish exports now earn almost 90 million US$ to the country. This apparent success story was achieved by a common front comprising government authorities and the processing industry, a high level of private-public collaboration not often seen in East Africa. Yet, important chunks of the regulatory and monitoring system exist only on paper. Furthermore, the system is supposed to achieve a series of contradictory objectives: to facilitate efficient logistics and ensure food safety; to match market demand and take care of sustainability; to implement a top-down food safety monitoring system and a bottom-up fisheries co-management system. This means that at least some food safety-related operations have to be carried out as 'rituals of verification'. Given the importance of microbiological tests and laboratories in the food safety compliance system, alchemic rituals are perhaps a more appropriate metaphor. While the white coats and advanced machinery of present-day alchemists reassure insecure European regulators and consumers, it leaves the Ugandan fish industry in a vulnerable position. In Uganda, fish can now be turned into gold again – but for how long?
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: Uganda, Africa, United States, East Africa
  • Author: Poul Ove Pedersen
  • Publication Date: 04-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: Since the famous ILO report on the informal sector in Kenya was published in 1972 the smallscale enterprises have been recognised to play an important role in the Kenyan economy as in other African countries. However, although often more than half of all the small enterprises are traders. Most small enterprise policies have focussed almost entirely on the small scale producers. The small-scale traders have generally been seen as unproductive activities with no positive role to play in development, a sign of poverty, although they are responsible for a large share of the national distribution system. The paper attempts to look at this paradox and investigate the role of the small scale traders in the small enterprise sector and in the development process.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Third World
  • Political Geography: Kenya, Africa
  • Author: Poul Ove Pedersen
  • Publication Date: 04-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: In spite of its growing importance in the African economies, the informal, small-enterprise sector still plays a dubious and little understood role in development. Due to lack of data it is often treated as if it was unrelated to the rest of the economy. However, a number og large surveys carried out in a number of African countries indicate that structure and development of the small-enterprise sector vary greatly both from country to country and over time, depending in a complex way on the national differences in socio-economic structures and policies.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Industrial Policy
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Patrick O. Alila, Meleckidzedeck Khayesi, Walter Odhiambo, Poul Ove Pederson
  • Publication Date: 02-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The Kenyan transport system is still to a large extent structured by physical infrastructure, legislation and institutions developed during the colonial period, and by import-substitution policies which during the first decades after independence to a large extent allowed the transport system to deteriorate. However, since the late 1980s the structural adjustment policies have led to a renewed interest both from the government and the donors in developing the transport infrastructure. At the same time trade liberalisation, deregulation of domestic trade and privatisation of the parastatals have since the mid-1990s led to a reshaping of both trade and transport which is still ongoing. The so-called logistical revolution, which since the early 1970s has revolutionised transport in the industrialised and industrialising world, has with a delay of two decades also reached Africa. This is resulting in much closer integration of transport into production and trade which tend to shift the focus away from the physical transport infrastructure to the institutional structures and organisations which support and exploit the infrastructures. This paper tries to describe the resulting transformation of the Kenyan transport system.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: Kenya, Africa
  • Author: Ninna Nyberg Sorensen
  • Publication Date: 07-2005
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: Abstract Migration transforms not only the destiny of individual migrants but also the conditions of family members left behind, of local communities and of the wider society. Despite the fact that migratory processes are multidimensional and may generate a wide array of positive as well as negative consequences for development, remittances have lately become the single most emphasized evidence and measuring stick for the ties connecting migrants with their societies of origin.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Gender Issues, Migration
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Emmanuel Kasimbazi
  • Publication Date: 10-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: This study uses Income Tax and Graduated Personal Tax to illustrate how taxpayers' rights and obligations are enforced. Existing literature on tax reform points to the fact that consideration of the rights and obligations of the taxpayers is central to the overall tax reform strategy. In fact, reform processes that do not effectively consider the rights of taxpayers will alienate and create discontent among the citizens. In the last few years, Uganda has taken keen steps to effectively reform its tax legal regime.
  • Topic: Democratization, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: Uganda, Africa
  • Author: Esben Friis-Hansen
  • Publication Date: 07-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The current institutional framework for agricultural services in East and Southern Africa was designed for a state-sponsored supply-driven approach. These institutions demand large field staff levels and are associated with high costs often financed by World Bank loans. These institutions are moreover ill-suited to respond to the demands from clients that are now emerging through development interventions and policies. Farmers are marginally involved with planning the content and means of service provision. Top-down approaches also fail to target agricultural services to women and vulnerable groups. Demand-driven advisory services have evolved over recent years and involve changing the role of extension agents from advisors to facilitators; increasing control by farmers through cost sharing; increasing the use of contracted services; and emphasizing knowledge provision rather then narrow technical advice.
  • Topic: Agriculture, Economics
  • Political Geography: Africa