Keywords: globalisation, growth, development, politics, colonialism, institutional weakness, African countries, WTO, World Trade Organisation, unequal development
Globalisation and the politics of unequal development
The failure of the World Trade Organisation's (WTO) ministerial conference in Cancun and the forced resignation of the president of Bolivia, indicate serious concern about globalisation. Those who protest against globalisation feel that the continuing deprivations and inequality in the world are distrustful of globalisation but insist that the concept itself does not have universal applicability. There are conceptual ambiguities, conflicting claims, differences as to how data have been interpreted, and assumptions made in measurement. There are concerns about methods in some studies and lack of clarity about how much power cross-country data sets have for detecting any underlying effects of greater openness or other covariates. This paper argues that given the unequal development in today's world coupled with the institutional and infrastructural weaknesses of developing countries, especially Africa, globalisation will be of no benefit to these countries.