Entwicklung für die Menschen

NEW YORK – Die Ebola-Epidemie in Westafrika zerstört Leben, dezimiert Gemeinden und verwaist Kinder in einem Tempo, das seit dem Ende des brutalen Bürgerkriegs in der Region vor über zehn Jahren nicht mehr erlebt wurde. In Liberia sind 60% der Märkte geschlossen, in Sierra Leone bekommt nur noch ein Fünftel der 10.000 HIV-Patienten in antiretroviraler Behandlung die entsprechenden Medikamente, und Guineas Regierung berichtet von einer krisenbedingten Finanzierungslücke in Höhe von 220 Millionen US-Dollar. Wird der Ausbruch der Krankheit nicht bald gestoppt, könnten die meisten der wirtschaftlichen und sozialen Erfolge, die seit dem Frieden in Liberia und Sierra Leone und seit dem Beginn des demokratischen Wandels in Guinea erreicht wurden, wieder zunichte gemacht werden.

Alle drei Länder sind weiterhin fragil, gespalten und, wie die aktuelle Krise zeigt, auf einzigartige Weise anfällig für Schocks. Im größeren Kontext betrachtet muss uns die aktuelle Krise in der Region dazu bringen, über die weltweite Unterstützung und Durchführung von Entwicklungshilfe nachzudenken.

Ein wichtiger Grund für die Verletzlichkeit dieser Länder ist der dauerhafte Mangel an Investitionen in ihre Menschen, was dazu geführt hat, dass die Früchte des Wirtschaftswachstum nicht bei den einfachen Bürgern angekommen sind. In der Tat ist die Wirtschaft in Guinea, Liberia und Sierra Leone in den letzten zehn Jahren vor dem Ebola-Ausbruch zwar jährlich im Durchschnitt um 2,8%, 10% bzw. 8% gewachsen, aber im täglichen Leben der Bevölkerung gab es wenig Verbesserungen. Über 65% der ausländischen Direktinvestitionen floss in den Bergbau und die Holzwirtschaft – Branchen, die dafür berüchtigt sind, kaum Arbeitsplätze zu schaffen und Reichtum auf wenige Empfänger zu konzentrieren.

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