n Africa Conflict Monitor - Workers revolt at privatisation : africa wide - monitoring economies

Volume 2016, Issue 02
  • ISSN : 2311-6943


The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is simply echoing what every economist knows and indeed, what every economics student learns early on: government- owned companies are usually corrupt, always inefficient and are a drain on treasuries of money that can be better used to improve government's legitimate services. Governments should not be in the business of business. Rather, government should count on revenue from tax levies and other traditional sources and a firewall must exist to separate the public and private sector. Government-owned companies are bad for national economies, stifling competition wherever they exist. Such companies are hotbeds for nepotism and patronage as government officials use their influence to seat relatives and cronies on boards of directors or have these unqualified individuals ensconced in lucratively paying, do-nothing positions. The IMF routinely suggests to African governments that they shed public companies with the avidity of snakes shedding unwanted skins, but the warning is received as a pro-forma Jeremiah, and routinely ignored.

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