Running Head: GLOBALIZATION POSITIVELY INFLUENCES AFRICA Globalization Positively Influences Africa Holly Berggren University of South Florida Abstract In this paper I will discuss the benefits of globalization upon Africa by analyzing and giving examples of the results of the international movement of ideas and people. Some points I will address that support the idea that globalization is a good thing for Africa are: Internationally recognized medicines and methods of prevention for diseases have especially helped the women of Africa due to the high rate of mortality in pregnant females and their infected offspring.
Increased exports in South Africa and the opening up to foreign banks have accelerated the economic growth of South Africa creating more job opportunity for skilled workers. I will also establish that globalization is not a new concept in Africa due to its involvement in slave trade and colonial presence therein. Proverb: “You take what is good and leave the residue” (as cited in Kwame). The effects of globalization are all encompassing due to the very definition of the term. Globalization can be defined as the opening up of economies that leads to an exchange of goods, technologies, services, capital, and ideas.
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There is a certain level of loss that comes with the gains of globalization in this ‘in with the new, out with the old’ society in which we live. Africa is at a fragile position as it has been left behind the rapidly growing Western world in modernity. No country can hide from globalization as it is the natural progression of our species. Advancements in technology and communication cannot be reversed. Though Africa can learn from the wisdom of her past, it would be a mistake to allow old methods or traditions to become a hindrance in the evolution of Africa as a successful member in our global society.
One positive aspect of globalization is its impact on women’s health in Africa and worldwide. The World Health Organization (WHO) reported that less money is spent on healthcare for females than males worldwide. Globalization helps to bridge that gap by new technologies, methods, and medicine that make their way to Africa through international efforts. This is much needed in Africa as the two deadliest diseases, malaria and HIV/AIDS are epidemic therein. An example of new methods in treatment for malaria is insecticide-treated nets that are cost-effective and cut malaria deaths by 20%.
Also, the risk of catching malaria during pregnancy can be prevented with an anti malarial drug. To ensure the use of these malaria treatments UNICEF is working with WHO, the World Bank, the Global Fund for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. In 2003, UNICEF provided more than 5 million insecticide-treated nets for 25 countries in Africa (Bellamy, 2004). Along with the medicinal and methodical improvements in disease treatment, archaic African rituals such as female genital circumcision have been globally criticized and therefore are being altered (Kwame).
In the case of South Africa, economic growth has been a direct result of its entering the World Trade Organization in 1994. This made it easier to import and export agriculture, making South Africa a player in the international market. South Africa has become more financially independent through the opening of foreign banks within the country, market development, introduction of new financial instruments, and a Bank rate that is more cohesive to the international market.
Manufactured exports have risen in South Africa since the signing of the GATT and the entrance in the WTO. The job market for the highly skilled in South Africa is increasing. This is an incentive for talented and well educated Africans to remain in Africa and build upon it. In turn this could create a larger job market for the lower or unskilled workers as the market continues to grow in manufacturing (Pretorius 2002). Globalization may be a recent term, but it is certainly not a new concept to Africans.
In the sense that it is a convergence of diverse peoples and trade, Africa has participated (maybe against her will at times) in the international slave trade, colonial rule, and the post-colonial trading in the modern market. Colonial rule enforced education of the colonial languages such as French and English. These languages remain a central part of African education thereby aiding in the communication with overseas business (Kwame). To conclude embracing globalization brings about a more liberal financial atmosphere and greater worldly knowledge.
The onset of global ideas and technologies should not be taken lightly by ignoring the transformation that is occurring. If Africa cannot let go to certain rituals and traditions that may get in the way of modernity than she will have a very difficult time overcoming her serious issues of disease, economy, and cultural evolution. Africa seems to be at a stand still while some countries are clearly pushing forward there are attachments that stand in their way.
More than animal sacrifices will have to be made if Africa really wishes to join the global party. Bibliography Pretorius, A. (September 2002). The Impact of Globalisation on the Labour Market in South Africa. Retrieved April 12, 2008 from www. commerce. uct. ac. za Kwame, Y. The Impact of Globalization on African Culture. Retrieved April 12, 2008 From www. tips. org. za Bellamy, C. (November 2004). Globalization and Infectious Diseases in Women. Emergence Infect Disease, Volume 10. Retrieved April 12, 2008 from www. cdc. gov