(c) Christoph Püschner / Zeitenspiegel

Focus on West Africa: New impulses from the (agricultural) economy

Some say that nothing works without the private sector. Others say that the development policy does not work like the free market. This debate is also fuelling new initiatives in West Africa. They range from the business of manure and the trade in domestic rice to the processing of cotton and the direct purchase of cocoa from the region by German manufacturers.

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Uli Reinhardt/Zeitenspiegel

No dirty dealing

Von Marlis Lindecke

Shit Business is Serious Business: A successful cooperation between research and the private sector.

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Uli Reinhardt/Zeitenspiegel

Bitter fruit

By Frank Brunner

Why aren’t bars of chocolate made where cocoa is grown? Author Frank Brunner analyses the industry’s fragile value chain from the plantation to the supermarket

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(c) Christoph Püschner

The price isn’t everything

By Bettina Rühl

In Togo’s capital, Lomé, home-grown rice costs almost twice as much as the imported product from Thailand. Yet there are good reasons for preferring the local product

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Uli Reinhardt/Zeitenspiegel

Enough of being poor

By Marcellin Boguy

In western Africa a new middle class is emerging. Their consumer behaviour is determining the demand for products – home-produced and imported goods, on the internet or at the village market. The people of Ivory Coast in particular are looking to the future with optimism.

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(c) Privat

How much private investment is the agricultural sector able to bear?

By Pedro Morazán

Small farmers in developing countries must modernise their farming methods, but poorly understood reforms could exacerbate poverty instead of alleviating it.

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(c) Christoph Püschner/Zeitenspiegel

Slaves do not produce quality

By Tilman Wörtz

Every child in Germany knows Ritter Sport – but most of the children harvesting cocoa on western African plantations have never even eaten chocolate. Can a chocolate manufacturer change the world? Conversation with Alfred Ritter about the power and powerlessness of a businessman.

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Sustainable Cotton

Interview with Iris Schöninger

Dr Iris Schöninger is a policy adviser in the policy department of Welthungerhilfe in Bonn. For several years she has also been working with the Advisory Committee of the ‘Cotton made in Africa’ initiative.

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(c) Privat

Small Farms, big money

By Agnes Kalibata

Africas economy can only grow sustainably, if also small-scale agriculture is seen as opportunity.

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Uli Reinhardt/Zeitenspiegel

Central market in former rebel territory

By Wilan Paté

The Ivory Coast has survived the civil war and the division of the country, but the central market in the former rebel capital, Bouaké, is recovering only slowly.

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