- Title: VARIOUS: Africa reacts to G20 summit meeting in Washington
- Date: 16th November 2008
- Summary: (W3) ABIDJAN, IVORY COAST (NOVEMBER 14, 2008) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF ABIDJAN STREET WITH CARS DRIVING (2 SHOTS) (SOUNDBITE) (French) ABIDJAN RESIDENT, KADER DJE, SAYING: "South Africa is representing South Africa first. Being there for their good, I don't think they will represent really represent Africa. It disappoints me a bit because we can't say if they will talk about African problems. Presently, South Africa is not concerned with the IMF restructuration plans. We, the other African countries, have this problem and unfortunately, we have not been associated." VARIOUS OF ABIDJAN STREET SCENE (2 SHOTS) (SOUNDBITE) (French) ABIDJAN RESIDENT, GUILLAUME HOUMPEHE, SAYING: ''They are the leaders of the world, they have always done this, to share Africa, they don't need the Africans to 'balkanize' Africa. So they know what they are doing. I can say no today, but they are the only who can tell what is happening in their little heads. In other words, the world is big enough and you can not chose 20 countries to go discuss the financial problems of the whole world do you understand? That is also the problem, for the summit to be comprehensive; the smaller countries also have to be invited in order for them to understand the financial realities at home. It is not because they are the smaller countries that can not be involved in the decision making, because the raw material come from there.'' MORE OF STREET SCENE (2 SHOTS)
- Embargoed: 1st December 2008 12:00
- Topics: Economic News
- Reuters ID: LVA7N8RCQMF2CVJ306NEXR0C1FBV
- Story Text: As the G20 summit proceeds in Washington, many Africans doubt the outcome would solve Africa's financial problems, especially as the continent is only represented by South Africa.
As world leaders of the Group of 20 developed and developing countries debate the global financial crisis in Washington, the African continent is asking why are they only represented by one country, South Africa.
The G20 leaders are in Washington to discuss how to jump-start the failing economies and also seek means to impose more government control over banks and lenders.
Africa's biggest economy, South Africa, is attending a two-day summit, alongside 19 of the world's largest national economies. But some are afraid South Africa will not represent the continent as a whole.
"South Africa is representing South Africa first. Being there for their good, I don't think they will represent really represent Africa," Kader Dje from Abidjan told Reuters Television.
"It disappoints me a bit because we can't say if they will talk about African problems," he added.
Guillaume Houmpehe, another resident of the Ivory's Coast biggest city said the world is too big to choose only 20 countries to discuss the financial problems of the whole world.
"The smaller countries also have to be invited in order for them to understand the financial realities at home. It is not because they are the smaller countries that can not be involved in the decision making, because the raw material come from there,'' he said.
Poverty, unemployment and disease have haunted African countries for a long time. As long as these remain the priority of many governments, the present G20 summit could just be another lost chance to tackle the real issues.
"But whether they are meeting or not I don't think it has any thing to do with Africa because even if they make noise about Africa when it comes to implementation we do not see anything," Daniel Okoghuale from Lagos in Nigeria said.
Some African officials argued rich countries have pushed Africa to integrate further into global markets in recent decades to ease access to capital and boost investment and wealth creation. But even so, they are still largely excluded from major decisions affecting the world economy.
Nairobi resident Wilson Mwaniki said Africans should come up with their own solutions and not rely on the rest of the world so much.
"We are the ones who understand our situation better than any other person," he said.
The G20 is a group of finance ministers and central bank governors from 20 economies - 19 of the world's largest national economies plus the European Union. Collectively, the G20 economies comprise 90 percent of global gross national product and two-thirds of the world population.
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