Guardian: Is aid for trade an effective tool for reducing poverty? – Since the World Trade Organization launched its aid for trade initiative in 2005, an estimated $200bn of development funding has been mobilized for it. Two NGOs, Traidcraft and the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development, have commissioned a study of British and European aid for trade assistance to assess the impacts of these projects on poor people. The assumption underlying aid for trade is that more trade brings greater national wealth, and everyone, including poor people, will benefit. (Elizabeth Blunt)
CSM: Foreign correspondents in Africa still struggle to tell the whole story – Western journalists were rightly criticized for the overall level of coverage surrounding the Kenyan elections, however it is a case in what seems to be the rule rather than the exception when it comes to how Western reporters will tell stories from the African continent. Western journalists in Africa continue to fail to tell the whole story of humanity at work, while American reporting on tragedies that took place in the US tends to better illustrate the dignity and heroism of the victims. (Tom Murphy)
FT: Africa takes lead in mobile revolution – In most African countries the road, rail and port infrastructure is in need of heavy upgrading if their economies are to become more competitive. But the speed with which the continent has built telephony networks and embraced mobile has taught the world much about Africa’s potential. Mobile phone subscriptions have risen from 90m to 475m in sub-Saharan Africa in seven years, changing not only the nature of communication but the state of banking, commerce and investment on the continent. (Katrina Manson)
AllAfrica: Norway Tops UN Development Rankings While Niger Is Placed Last – Norway, Australia and the United States lead this year’s Human Development Index (HDI) rankings, the annual UN measure of progress in human well-being. Niger, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Mozambique are at the bottom. The HDI figures combine measures of life expectancy, literacy, school enrollment and GDP per capita. The report emphasized the unprecedented growth of developing countries, which is propelling millions out of poverty and reshaping the global system.