Soviet Economic Aid to Sub-Saharan Africa: Politics in Command
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SOVIET ECONOMIC AID TO SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA; POLITICS IN COMMAND
wd ui Ihr iHFwnllnn nf Mnnnraiulum. ipprnvnl lor pubJKaiionucti IUS6 by (he Ch.lrman of theInicllignice Council
The Economic Aid Program:imited
Advisory and Educational
Academic Scholarships: Moscow's Favorite African
The African Perspective. Assistance or
The Balance Sheet: Moscow's
Implications for the United
ANNEX: The Early Years
We believe thai over ihe nexl five years Moscow will allot most of its African economic aid to self-proclaimed Marxist-Leninist states-such as Angola. Ethiopia, andenough going to other "socialist-oriented" countries (particularly Cuinca and Mali) to protect Soviet economic and political equities. Historically,ercent of Moscow's African aid pledges have gone to Marxist client and socialist countries. These states are also Moscow's principal military aid recipients in Africa. In our view. Soviei economic assistance willseful supplement to Soviet military assistance. Moscow's principal tool for expanding and entrenching Soviet interests in Africa (military commitments outstrip economic pledges byo ll
Despite the seriously deteriorating economic conditions in most of these recipient stales, Soviet economic aid has been relatively6 billion in economic aid pledged by the Soviets9 is by no quantitative measure competitive with Western programs, which have delivered-on more0 billion in food, technical services, and project assistance. Moscow has failed to come to the aidignificant way even of Ethiopia, its principal African client, during the country's ongoing food crisis.
Despite the small size or Soviet economic aid, these programs nonetheless are often high-profile influence builders and containfew real costs sinceercent arc credits. The programs are very useful instruments for both short- and long-term advancement of Soviei interests, promoting bilateral economic ties and dependence on Soviet advisers and equipment. They alsoover foractivities and, through the scholarshipruly long-term seeding" effort for future subversion In addition, much of Soviet economic aid carries tangible economic returns to the USSR, supplying important commodities and some hard currency payments for often inferior Soviet goods and services.
For example, economic aid has given the Soviets political or financial rewards at low cost by:
Increasing access lo African governments and societiesprovision of Soviet advisers, doctors, and teachers incountries.4 Moscow maintainedechnicians
Thti MPn nw-
nhir* ind enMulU ptialU SovietnnUnc* u, Mrtt* and lupponreeionil *xuk
on the continent. In Soviet client states, such as Angola and Ethiopia, the USSR has achieved direct access to domestic policymakers, allowing it to influence day-to-day operations of the economy and to formulate development plans.
Adding Soviet-trained personnel to the ranks of African elites through academic scholarships. Since the, more0 students from almost every state in Africa have attended Soviet universities. We estimate that Moscow still recruits up to one-third of its African scholarship holders without theof their home governments.
Obtaining sources of strategic and other commodities. Moscow imports substantial amounts of bauxiteoviet-aided project in Guinea that underwrites at least one-fourth of Soviet domestic alumina production. The Soviet Union also supports its fishing catchillion tons annually from African coastal waters under fisheries agreements withtates.
Generating hard currency and opening new markets for Soviet products Less thanercent of Moscow's African aid has consisted of grants. The remainder has been in the form of credits that are repayable overoearsercent interest, often in hard currency. Payments for Soviet technicians also bring in hard currency earnings to Moscow. In addition, equipment sales to Africa have increased tenfold over the last decade to more0 million annually, and Moscow is projected to earn2 billion in hard currency for equipment to the Ajaokuta steel mill inredunlikely ever to produce steel profitably.
On the other hand, economic aid has not produced unalloyed benefits for Moscow:
the wake of an increasingly desperate economicAfricans have become more vocal in their criticism of the
. small size and poor quality of Soviet aid.
Most African governments are wary of the poliiical andcontent of the Soviet academic program and attempt to limit student exposure to it.
There is little evidence that Soviet proselytizing has been successfularge number of African students- Soviet education and training tend to generate an aversion to the Soviet system among most African students.
Moscow's economic aid program is not designed to provide help to struggling African nations but to enhance Moscow's own economic and poliiical standing. The Soviet Union will continue to try to maximize
the political impact of its small effort by relying heavily on academic scholarships and technical assistance. We believe low-cost exchanges mil dominate the program and account for the bulk of Soviet aid to most Afriiran aid recipients.
In our view, Moscow's future economic assistance to nonsocialist African states will largely be limited to situations that offerfor concrete economic or political returns. The Soviet Union will be alert for chances to invest in oil-producingasin countries that produce strategic minerals. Moscow will also be prepared to offer economic assistance to help it establish closer relations withountry that is attractive to the Soviet Union because of its extensive mineral resources, potentially compatible leadership, and proximity to South Africa.
Nevertheless, we doubt that large new economic aid agreements with African states are in the offing, except possibly to Moscow's closest and most beset clients, or toreakthrough in Soviet relationstrategically important country, such as Zimbabwe. The USSR will remain unwilling to commit sizable resources for uncertain political payoffs. For their part, African leaders are aware of the ineffectiveness and niggardliness of Soviet economic aid and will almost certainly continue to look first to the West for required assistance. We believeleaders will also continue to apply for Soviet economic aid, regardless of its drawbacks.
Moscow's failure to provide adequate economic support to its African clients has several implications for the United States-
In most cases, will not discourage its major aid recipients from seeking Western assistance so long as these states remain politically aligned with the Soviet Union and dependent on Soviet military assistance.
leaders of major Soviet clientexample, the Marxist regimes in Angola andunlikely tothemselves ideologically from Moscow over the issue of economic aid because of their dependence on Soviet and Cuban military and security assistance, but the deficiencies in Soviet economic aid could provide the United States with some limited opportunities to enhance its influence with socialist African states disillusioned with the USSR. For example, states lhat once looked predominantly to Moscow for aid such as Benin, Cape Verde. Congo. Guinea-Bissau, Guinea. Madagascar. Mali, and Mozambique have already begun to distance themselves in varying degrees from the Soviet Union.
To free sucli countries of their Soviet entanglements. Western countries would have to supplant Moscow's military supplier and advisory role, in addition to pouring billions of dollars annually into their economies. We believe, however, that the Marxist client states would be reluctant to fully replace Soviet with Western assistance even ifhoice.
Thte paper analyze* Ihe main Irends in Soviet economic assistance' lo Sub-Saharan Africa andthe most likely course of such aid over the neat five years* As in other areas, the African economic program has been used largely to support political allies and promote Soviet trade flows, rather than to foster the orderly development of African economies Soviet economic aid to Africa has included theof goods and technical services on credit ot free of charge, as well as an extensive scholarship program thai provides free academic and technical training to African students Although the Kremlin has placed increasing emphasis on its military program in Africa since Ihcaid commitments have outstripped economic pledges bysee figureeconomic aid continues to be useful for its recipients, given Africa's senous economic needs and the high visibility attached lo foreign economic assistance protects.]^
2 Moscow's basic objectives In Africa are similar to longstanding Soviei goals elsewhere in (he Third World:
To erode Western and Chinese influence and substitute its own.
To promote Ihe creation nf VlanW regimes closely allied with the USSH and to protect those regimes, especially from interna) opposition
To gain access lo air and naval facilities
To obtain selected strategic raw materials lor the USSR and its allies aod loapability over the long lerm to disrupt vital Western access to strategic raw materials
USSR: Economic and Miliiary Aid to Snb-Saharan
Million US S
USSR: Economic and Mililary Agreements With Sub-Saharan Africa by Major
nhe USSR's African economic aid recipients fall into several gioups of varying interest to Moscow:
Most important are the self-proclaimedstates lhat are major recipients of Soviet mililaryEthiopia, andSoviet relationship dates from the. These countries have absorbedercent of Moscow's economic aid commitments
lo Africancluding almost all of thef-paymrnts assistance Moscow has doled out lo ihe continent These ties are politiesnd strategically motivated, providing few ot the economic returns lhat the USSR usually socks from Us aid commlimcnls In return for military and economic assistance. Moscow has extractedsuch as access lo port and air facilities in Ethiopia and Angola through deliveries to tne Nigerian steel plant.aid effort compares with0 billion in assistance delivered lo Africa bv Western countries and multilateral organizations over the same period (see figure 4X| ]
The second group Includes socialist andsocialist states such as Congo. Ghana. Guinea, Madagascar, Mali. Somalia, and Tanzania Some of these were Moscow's first African aidin thend have, in some cases, distanced themselves from Motcow The USSR continues as the dominant mililary supplier for most of these counlries and continues to dispense some economic aid In an attempt to protect its political and economic equities Smaller states that fall into this category include Benin, Cape Verde. Equatorial Guinea, Guinea Bissau. Sao Tome and Principe, and Seychelles The Soviets have not provided ihem significant economic aid, although many of these count ties developed Soviet military ties before independence and srill count on Soviet arms
Nonsocialist countries selected largely for their ability to meel specific Soviet economicare the third group of African aidThe USSR expects tangible economicfrom its investment in these countries, such as the hard currency Nigeria is paving as partillion deal signed9 for theof the Aiaokuta steel mill The Nigerian venture,hc exception in Africa Consequently, the few Soviet aid offers lo other nonsoclalbl states have been along the lines of the small, but profitable,illion fisheries agreement with Sieira leone. j
The Economic Aid Program;imited Effort
ver Dearly three decades, the USSR hasonly6 billion in economic aid lo Sub-Saharan Africa, IS percent ofillion into Ihe non-Communist developing world-Only aboutillion of the aid extended has been drawn down, about ihe same ratio as in other areas Disbursements over lime have averaged less0 millionthan one-twentiethercent of Sovietin the past four years ihey have increased00 million annually
osl African stiles cannol effectively usr and are nut able to support Ihe huge processing and manufacturing completes and giant hvdtopower schemes lhat have iraoMronally been ibe USSR's aid Specialties Because uf this inability of Africanlo absorb mosl Soviet aid, the sectoral distribution of Moscow's aid to Africa has deviated somewhat from Soviet programs in other areas (see figurehereas the Soviets previously had not made much agricultural assistance available to Alrican countries. Mokow has recently begun to engage in large-scale agricultural development programs ^
ectoral distribution of Soviet assistance shows lhat;
Heavy industry, power, and multipurposehave absorbed onlyercent of the alloca-Hons to Africa.
Budgetary support and bosic needs proiects have accounted lorercent of the pledges to Africa.
USSR: Seciorial Distribution of Economic
Aericullural assistance ha* reached an unpreee-deniedercent of Soviei assistance to Africa, largely because of new Soviet credits to Ethiopia
. for agricultural development.Q
spite of the relatively high proportion of budgetary and public services aid in the African procram. Moscow has provided almost no relief aid. particularly food, to African countries- The Soviet
suffers parlieularly in comparison with the US elforl: inoscow has on average provided less thanillion annually for relief assistance compared with0 million average in food aid that the United States has delivered annually to Africa (secoscow has failed to come lo the aidignificant way of even Ethiopia. Its principal African client, during the country's ongoing food crisis. Even with the world's altcntion focused on Ethiopia's severe economic crisis, tlie USSR provided only SS million in food and medical assistance last year, compared0 million from Western sources. Wc do not foresee any substantialin the Soviet relief aid performance through the end of lhedecade.Q
small amount of economic assistanceto most African states has served to limitto use the program for clandestine and subver-
United Stales and USSRi Food Aid Disbursements to Sub-Saharan Africa
live purposesow of only-orenCommittee lot Foreign Economicmission* in Africa administering aidwould be the economic entities used forgathering and KCB cover. The Soviet'seducational aid programs, discussed separately,Moscow, however, with much greaterfor clandestine activities.
oviet economic aid has not been provided on generous term* Lcfli thanercent of African aid has consisted of grants (seelthough grants haveomewhat more importantillion) over the past five year* Much of ihis has been taken up by price subsidies on crude oil lo Ethiopia and has not burdened the Soviet economy. The remainder of the aid has been in tlie form of credits that are repayable overoearsercent interest, often in hard currency. Inalmost half of Western assistance has come in the form of grants, while most Western credits arc repay, able overearsercent interest In most cases. Moscow does not provide turnkey services iincluding funding of local coats and rnawgernent of all phases of i: const ruction) that African states need lo assure successful implementnd operation of protects
oscow may find the lerms of it, African aid program easing by uV-fault. however, as maiorseek debt relief for their increaMngly Irouhted eccaiomies and request extended periods forUntil now. however, the burden for African stales has been manageable Scheduled economic aid repayments to the Soviet Union from Africageria) totalillion annually; only Ethiopia lias rescheduled. Nigeria, which currently is0 million annually, may be forced to seekin tbe neat few years
e Economic Impact In tbe early days of tcidei>endence, African stales thai had adopted socialist systems eipected Soviet assistance to replace funding thai they had formerly received fromears of limited assistance have conditioned mosl African countries lo the realities of Soviet aid.f" |
oe Moscow's major clients, which haveeconomies and deteraorating infrastructure, the lack of Soviet support ts more difficult to rrxnocile Whtle orienting Iheir economic, political, and military structures along Soviet lines, ihese countries expected the USSR toajor contribution to Iheir considerable economic needs Soviet leaden, however.
have balked al adding extra burdens lo theireconomy. [
n Angola. Ethiopia. Mozambique, andfour counlries In which the USSR has concen Iraled its efforts in recentSoviet economic aid program has failed to attest their economicand in some cases has exacerbated these difficulties;
In Angnla. many officials believe lhat nearlyeats of Soviet economic aid has been an utimlti gated failure Industrial production lags farprewar levels, and only the Western-run oil industry operatesrofit Food and consumer goods shortages have become endemic, buthas flatly refused to provide emergency food assistance for war-lorn southern Angola.Angolan payment! for Soviet military assistanceubstantial share of its pelru-leum earnings.
vear economic relation ship wilh Ihe USSR, growth rates have been cut in half and per capita incomes have dropped lo among ihe lowest in Africa Although drought and insurgency have crippled the economy, the regime's Soviet-style economic policies have
couiaced corrective rot amies: resettlevi tat ion. and low producer prices haveagricultural production, and theof industry and uncertainly over the future of the private sector have discouraged investment and impeded industrial output.
In Mozambique, ihe economic crisis has reached almost unmanageableationwide insurgency lias accelerated ihe economic decline originally caused by the inability of Communist counlries to replace Portuguese technicians and markets. Industry has collapsed (output hasbyercent in the last fivexport earnings fell0 millioncbl climbed3 billion, and reserves now stand atillion.
Finally. Nigeria's Aiaokuta steel mill, which has absorbedercent of the USSR's extensions to Africa and is Moscow's showcase project on the continent, is Africa's biggestratheraccordingigerianrepoit. The protect willf the nation's lolal Investment budget this year, it will ultimately cost al leastillion in hard currency, it will require annuallo import raw materials to produce steel, and it is already technologically obsolete. Other nxpott industries that use steel will produce uncompetitive goods because of ihe high cost of sleel inputs
Ihe Record oo Multilateral Aid
The USSR Ins staved away Irom multilateral eco-riuink- programs in which iU iniluence would beThe USSR does not contrihule lo niianintions sue* as the IBRD, regional development banks, or special funds such as the International Fund lorDevelopment; Moscow's only multilateral aid commilment is lessiOion annually, which it gives lo UN development agencies Western counlries provide over S2ear of development assistance to Ihe United Nalions alone and almostillion In all multilateral institutions The USSR's low interest In aid and humanitarian organizationsreflected in the Soviet Staffmg pattern al the United Nations No Snviel nationals work for 'he UN High Commissioner lot Refugees, the Food and Agricultural Organization.Fund forelvpment. ot tlie World Bank aroup Only two Soviets work for UNICEF and Sis lor ihe UN Development Program, tliekey UN aid agencies| |
Moscow, however, has managed to use idto the Uniied Nations and regular UNpursue political ends, particularly in AfricaNations Environmental Program and tlieCenter for Human Settlementsaboutovids in Nairobi
IThroiich the dlorl* ol its UN
employee* in Nairobi. Moscow has secured' iheTariMnian engineers in the USSR undct aand hasoviet official in eliarcc ofprotect in Seychelles-
oscow's most widespread form ot assistancehas been personnel exchanges. Themaintainedechnicians on4 and accepts several thousand newannually for undergraduate and graduateSoviet institutions. More thanfricanparticipated in Soviei exchange programsarid cxperls, compared with onlyhatSoviet project
echnical assistanceey element of the Suviel aid program in Africa, although it has never reached the levels in other areas (see tablehile African stales account for almost half of the LUCs that receive Soviet technical assistance, onlyourth of Soviets employed abroad are in Africa. In many African stales. Moscow provides some services free of charge, in contrast-to its practice of charging hard currency in wealthier LDCs. Angola, Ethiopia, and Mozambique host almost half of the Soviet technicians in Africa. Nigeria, whose hard currency arrangements resemble those Moscow maintains with Arab clients, accounts for another third [
hrough ils services program, Moscow has on occasion achieved direct access to domesticin several socialist stales: this access helps it lo influence the day-to-day opcralHin of the economy and to forrnuiale short- and long-term trade and economic development plans High-level Soviet ad vis-
" ' av.
were attached lo economic planning ministries in Ghana. Cuinea, and Mali in the heyday of Soviet programs innd are present now in Angola. Congo, and Ethiopia. We believe Moscow alsouses CKES missions in LIX* as cover for KGB offkemP
oviet doctors and teachers, who ofien are provided under bilateral agreements and through UNESCO at little or no cost, offer Moscow another means ol expanding its presence and influence in Africa.edical pervonntl ace Inountries, and Soviet instructors inch at universities, secondary schools, language institutes, and party khoots iuountries Soviet teachers all over Africa apparently have ample opportunity lo pursue illegal or subversive activities, and African governments are generallyto detect and espel these personnel | |
Academic SchoUnhiBt: Moteowi Favorite African Frotram. The USSR's principal economic effort In Africa has come In the form of academic sehnlaiships.ore0 African students have traveled to Ihe USSR,hird of all Third World students educated at Soviet institutions (see tableAcademic training is the USSR's only eootwmic access to about half of the countries that accept scholarships, academic ties arc Moscow's only direct link with five African stales thai have not recognized the USSR and ihree others where Moscow does not maintain an embassy
The academiche rrxm conc*-xiional of Soviet anl programs Scholarships cover most livingiitson. andansport athat make Ihcm very attractive to the majority of African students denied tlie oppoitunily to sludy in Ihe West. We estimale that the USSRilbon annually lo train
oscowm ichoUnhip piogiamong term investment. By providing academic training and exposure lo Soviei political, cultural, and socialthe USSR hopes to forge lasting tics to persons who may eventually obtain Influential positions in their home countries According to Wesiernoviet academicot comparableuality Western one.ractical one. equip ping African graduates with the basic professional and technical skills that often enable them to qualify for elite positions at home. Nevertheless, for many Sovict-Iraincd personnel, progress has been slow relative lo that of better trained alumni of Western Institutions In addition, despite Soviet emphasis on the educational program, African graduates of Western institutions still vastlyose from Soviet universities.
n lecent years, the USSR has recruitedthrough bilateral agreements withThese official scholarships areoo the African side bv ministriesand univeralin and by Sovietcenters, friendship societies, and frontWhile Moscow has Utile influence overof students in countries lhat maintainover government sponsored candidates,is mil able lo impose as own criteria onsanctioned students recruited through
Academic Sludcob From Sub-Saharan Africa in IhnS4
ere rounded to
ih- nearer* 5ol the nni-.li
We estimate that Moscow still recruits upof its African sdwlarship holders withoutof their home governmentshas occurred in countries such asCoast, Lesotho, and Malawi that have noagreements with the USSR. The Sovietin Ouagadougou has screened and selectedfrom both Builcina and Ivory Coast forin tbe USSR: accepted students travelto Moscow via Mali. Extralegal recruitmentin states such as Chad and Zaire, wherewants to attract more students outsideatcords or where it wishes lo maintainLit mmleiizat ions
was also the gateway to the USSR for
TairTin students who oppose the Mobutu regime
o help maintain contact wilh African students alter graduation. Moscow flies selected graduates back lo the USSR for conferences in iheir fields ofThe Soviets abo organize alumni groups that olfer special benefits for mcmbers.n
ear* KCB /nto/remen/ighlyed nature of Soviet educational programs dVmaiids
nrgroim. ollteuny CaUnf "Students Croup for Studv-am the Soviei Way ofourse load lhat
hi tli it i
Hussian Language and History of the Soviet Union (first years
huiosodih of Mariitm (second and third vean) Polilical Ivconowy (tinmi and fourlli ycarsj
In any case, there Is little evidence that Soviei proselytizing lias lieen succeufularge number of African students According tu numerous student ir-ports, enotf African graduates of Soviet indHuluiu do not return home with pro Soviet views orillingness to work for Moscow Instead, eiptmirc to Soviet education generatrs In moU iluilenta an ateinoc
lo the Soviet svsteen The spartan livine eondrtions make Ie* converts lo ihe Soviei way of life: returning
students complain of heavvhanded KCB surveillance.
racial discrimination, (poordition* travel
restriction, miariablc wraibct. and imiiiptijIi- Ind
active KCB involvement in allthe time the student appliescholarship to beyondA wide variety of reports from students and informants corroborates our view that the KCBmonitors, and manipulates African students to serve the USSR's ends:
heelieved to be planning toclandestine capability In Africa bv establishimilanguage centers in Addis Ababa.and Luanda to teach Russian toThe most gifted will receive scholarshipsin the USSR Moscow abo hopes to offerlanguage course* in African secondary schools totraining costs and to Identify candidates forcenters, where heavy closes of Staninnwill be part of the curriculum
he African Pertvective: Asiiilanee or Std> oerrion. Many African countries are becoming more sensitive lo Soviet training programs Africanrecognize that Soviet training eiposes students lo heavy doses of* propaganda and ideology They attempt to limit this eiposurcestricting the number of student scholarthips available undct btlal-eralcreening candidates carefully and rejecting Ibose who appear susceptible lo Communist overtures,estricting government positions available to returners African students from some countries are carefully monitored by Iheir embassies during Iheir stays in the USSR and In some cases are placed on security service watch lists on their return homeast resort, several African governments, such as Burkina. Cameroon, Central African Republic, and Liberia, rankled by persistent Sovietof agreed selection procedures, have at some point canceled their educational exchange agreements with Ihe USSR.I-
htonethdess, while African governments are wary of the polilical and subversive content of the Soviet academic program, few can afford to pass up all-expense-paid scholarships when educationalabroad arc so scarce. Indeed. Africans go to Ihe USSRreference for training in the West
and the uw-iieness lhat thev may encounteron (heir return, simply because the Sovietsonly opportunityigher education
African countries lackingand managerial caper tne generally welcomethat Soviet advisers perform Whileeputation of being aloof andtheir personal dealings with Africans, we haveof rromplainls concerning theirSoviet economic advisers aie rarelyfor unsatisfactory performance orOn the other hand,hoice,most Africans prefer Western technicalbecause they view Western iethnology asadvanced than that of the Fast.j "j
The Balance Sheet; Moscow's Perspective
using its economic aid program tostructures in some states, to increasedependence, and to convert selected Af rscaraSoviet brand of socialum. the USSR has beenreap some financial and political rewards at low
Increasing access to African governments and societies through the novation of Soviet advisers, doctors, and teachers inountries, in Angola. Ethiopia, andiminishing degree Mcuam-hiiiue the USSR is heavily involved withplanning and development
dding Soviet-trained personnel to the ranks of ihe African elite through academic scholarship oilers Former Soviet students have gainedpcwlions in Marxist and socialist stales, and head .ip opposition in >venseals, hi MM moderate African countries. In Ethiopia, for example. Chairman Mcuglslu relies heavily on Soviet- trained personnel, and Soviet influence and anti-US sentimeni have increasedin ihe Foreign Affairs Ministry with Ihe reported appointment ofoviet-trained students into high-level positions Several Soviet graduates have attained Cabinet-level positions in such countries as Congo. Cuinca. and Zambia, and large numbers of Soviet-trained personnel have readied supervisory or professional inuJ-ttons in goverruTsenl and Industry in at leasttales Opposition movements in countries such as Botswana and Senegal include Soviet-educated personnel, and many officials of the African National Congress have received academicfn tho ussr.
Obtaining sources of tmpurtanl commodities-Moscow Imports substanlial amounts of bauxiteoviet-aided proieel in Guinea Ihaiat least one-fourth of Soviet domestic alumina reduction and supports its fishing catchillion ions annually from African coastal waters under fisheries agreements withtates Soviet geologists have also surveyed minerals and metals inlrican countries as part of their credit program and have been able to identify countiies where Soviei minerals or metals pro) CCts could be piolitable
Generating hard currency and opening new mar kets for Soviet products. Overall, equipment sales to Africa have increased tenfold over the last decade lo more0 million annually, and Moscowearnillion in hard currency lor equipment lo the. Aiaokuta slcel mill in
xer the next five years, the Soviets appear lo be in for rough saittirg as
Africans become moreheir criticism of Moscow's old
The economies of major Soviet aid recipients crumble even as mostarge proportion of their hard currency earnings lo boy Soviet military niutpment.
Tlie Soviet economic model is increasingly disced.
African leaders seek to counter the subversive potential in seemingly benign Soviet offers of ScbrHarshapa and Other training Q
ettm Aid. The continued absence of Soviet aid in ihe wake of an increasingly desperate economic environment hits forced both socialist and nonsocialist countries to rely more heavily on Ihe West for much-needed financial support. Even Moscow's most fa-voted aidEthiopia, andsought Western development and relief aid to stimulate their economies These three countries collectively received alillion dollars inassistanceo keep their economies going
oscow, however, docs not necessarilyof its clients turning to ihe West; and Moscow, in fact, has sometimes counseled Its African allies lo seek more Western aid because it is unable orto rescue iheir economies. In Ethiopia, ihe USSR has encouraged Mengislu lo maintain Western aid ties, and the Soviets endorsed his plans In ihe eaio
estern doners conference in Addis Ababamoie Kid. Similarly. Moscow hasfrom nationalising its oil industry, fearingof thr- US-run industry with letsmanagers mightot* of revenue(or military raiments and create rlrrnandsSoviets for oil industry aid
espite criticism of Soviet economic aidwe believe that most African governments will continue to accept Moscow's offers of assistanceof the parlous stale of their economies African leaders realize that their economic needs are so great that no single rlnnor can fulfil! them, and they see hi lie contradiction in accepting assistance from both the West and Ihe Soviet Bloc Indeed, some value mixed ties because Ihcsc strengthen their nonaligried creden-lials More impoitant, the leaders of Soviet client states will continue lo place greatei importance on Soviet miliiary and security assistance, and they ihus are unlikely to distance themselves from Moscow over the issue of economy aid Irsdeed, allbough many offieiafa in countries such as Mozambique. Artgota. aad Ethio-pta are critical ofconomic programs, they also beliese thai the "Western colonial espioitaiion" of their countries was Ihe original cause of Iheirproblcmsf
o Ihe pail. Soviet leadership changes haveramatic Impact oneconomic aid pohes After Stalin's death, the flamboyant Khrudrcheva program Ihal featured Urge commitmentsew recipients designed to establish Moscowajor actoi in the Third WotJd Many of these agreements were never fulfilled Following Khiuslv chevj fall, the more conservative Brezhnev-Kosygin regime made ma (or revisions in tbe program thai deeply cut assistance to Afnca The Soviets became more cauuous in allocating fund, ro Urge protects; the stability ol the recipient and the viability of the ixroject weie max* criteria!
Soviei View* on Client fcconomie Interocrion With the Weil
soviet araoetsuc wntmg on (be nnnoieiciof torOlrtistates-the llteoretnl categoryhich all ol thesr African cheoTsthe rolr ol Westetn aid in Ihe*akowl lhat vrveral differeW sehnobought exisl on this uiur.
A few Soviet theorists have argued lhat economic liiieraetlon wilh the Wesl will inevllably promote neoeolonialrtl dependenrt ard tlie eventual Mibai gallon of socialist-oneiiiW Ualrs ind ihus have adroraled the cSuninet.on of lien nilh the lali* of production ind riehangr" as soon ai nosubk-
-Al least one Soviet iheorist ha. advocated an approach thai has cnertoiwi nf Lenin's "New Economic Policy" of. This wouldbasing national drirlopenrni on agricultural growth andeft ritreinlsl" policies of nationalization, forced tnduariaUzalion. and de-tachnew from Wesiern aedide The-oold preseanabb uieore socubfll wnse umpre.tied tuneheg the crrat.cn of an adequate rece-irnic base
ost recent discussion lus been dominated byihat trading with and aecepliiig aid fromM an unavetdaUe isrccsuts forslatescompie.in new of Xleaeo-'s frequenton the tree, ri Sow* ggggaaggfcwarned thai this could
lead to gains Innfluence lor the West at thr eapense of the fcmeli. while othersr eued confidence lhat. as long as propercontrol was maintained by tbe Third World government, the country', socialist orientation would not be in leopards
one of Ihe more "wide open" retalaans theory, anduide In official views and
The younger and more dynamic Gorbachev probably will have the time and the political clout to reshape the Soviet aid program if he deem* ItNevertheless, in our view, given Gorbachev's docnestic economic considerations,nlikeb that the pattern of Soviet rxvjnomic assistance to Africa will change dramatically The program is heavily focused on Marxist stales that cannot be aUi.donrd furand strategic reasons Although Ihe Kiemlin would no doubt like to minimize the amount of assistance provided these countries, it does not want to give the impression that it ts letting its Marxist allies down, and we cannot rule out major rtr^eronomic commitments to its closest African auiesQ
lthough military assistance will lake the lead in Sen let dealings with these embattled states, these countries will bring increasing pressure on Moscow to expand llnancial support to prop up their economies.
While maior new commitments are possible. Moscow will he reluctant to go above0 million annual level ofxtended lo Angola. Ethiopia, and Mozambique combined. Consequently, we believe in most cases Moscow will nol discourage elforts lo secure Wesiern assistance so long as these stales remain politically aligned with the Soviet Union andon Soviet military assistance
lscwhere in Africa. Moscow has Mileexpand its program. The USSR will provideto other socialist countries where it haspolitical equities to protect In Congo.Mali, and Tanzania, Moscow will probablycredits in areas of special interest for thesuch as fishing, mining, and in vitalizingprotects. Guinea, which furnishes Moscowtransport landing rights and port accessto bauxite, will receive enough assistanceMoscow's credibility wilh tlie newthe past iwo years. Guinea hat receivedin Soviet credits, its first subiianrial aidUSSR in moreecade Smalleras Benin. Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau, andcan expect only token Soviet support
oscow's economic assistance to nonsocialist African slates will probably be limited to situations lhat guarantee concrete economic or political returns We do not foresee opportunities foi ihe USSR lo conclude development contraclt on Ihe scale ofAfaokula steel mill, but Moscow will be alert for chances to invest in ventures in oil-producing stales such at Cameroon. Gabon, and Nigeria that can afford to pay for Soviet assistance Iheho interested in development cootrads in countries that produce Urategic minerals For example, the USSR recently offered credits to Zaire forlso interested in improving its relationship withountiy that isto the Soviet Union because of its extensive mineral resources, potenlially compatible poliiical leadership, and proximily lo South Africa.
verall, we doubt that Urgeonomic aidwith African stales are in the offing, except possibly to Moscow's closest and most beset ckSeots, or in an attempt toreakthrough in
Soviet relationstrategically importjntas Zimbabwe The USSR will remain unwillingsizable resources for uncertain politicalFor their purl, many African leaders arc awareineferiest and niggardliness of Sovietaid programs and are likely to look first tofor required assistance. Nonetheless, weAfrican leaders will continue to artv-ptaid, regardless of its
aining political access and influence willthe overriding obsective of the Soviet lidin Africa The USSR's recent performance in Ethiopia underscores tlie intent of the program. It is not designed lo provide help to struggling African nations. IhiI to enhance Moscow's own economic and political standing. The Kremlin will try tohe poliiical impact of its small effort by relying heavily on academic scholarships and technical anil-lance These low-cost exchanges will dominate the prngiam and comprise the bulk of Soviet aid to most of the USSR's African aid recipients. | |
Imph'cotiom for the United States
he leaders of major Soviet clientexample. Ihe Marxist legimcs in Angola andunlikely lo distance themselves ideologically from Moscow over the issue uf economic aid bceaiise of iheir dependence on Soviet and Cuban mililary and security assistance, hut the deficiencies in Sovietaid could provide the United States wilh some limited oppnrlunities to enhance its influence wilh socialist African Males disdlusioned wtth the USSR For example, states that once looked predominantly to Moscow for aid such as Benin. Cape Verde. Congo. Cuinea-Busau, Guinea. Madagascar. Mali, andhave already begun to distance themselves in varying degrees from live Soviet Union] |
o lice Mich countries of iheir SovietWestern countries would have tomilitary supplier and advisory role InIn pouring billions of dollars annually intoWe believe, however, that thestate* would be reluctant to fulls replaceWestern assistance even if given a
Eorly Yeors Revisited
1 The USSR bunched ib economic aid proeiam in Africa during diewave ol decolonization in thehen opportunities arose lor Moscow lo establish ties with newly irsdcpcndent courttries eager to break with former colonial powers. From its first agreement with Guineand conlinuing into the, economic aid served at the USSR's principal inurnment to gam influence with emerging African nates. Moscow extended0 million In economic assistance to Sub-Saharan Africa9ndillion in militaryattern that corrMponded with African desires to reorganize their economies along socialist lines and to break their economic dependence on the West In the early yean. Moscow focused on radicalhana, Cuinea. and Mali, which some Soviet theorists deemed likely to follow the "norbcaptlalisl path ofhese 'revolutionary democracies"more than half of the USSR's ecotsomJc com-mitmenl) to Africa through the
he sense of euphoria generated bv rapidchange, however, led to exaggerated expectations mi both stiles concerning the rule of Soviet aidatalyst for African economic development andoundation for Soviet influence on tbe continent Moscow expected polilical dividends to flowfrom economic assistance and overlooked the intricacies of providing meaningful development pro grams for countries whose economic futures depended on significant inputs of funding, modern agiotcchno-logy, top-quality expertise, and guaranteed export markets. The USSR's assistance was often irsappropri-aie and wasteful. Moscow assigned rconomic aid haphazardly with little concern for its viability,large umbrella credits toide range of agricultural, industrial, geological, and prestigesuch as sladiumt and hotels Few projects weie properly appraised before they were started, many were subject to long delays or never completed. Soviet miscalculation! were exacerbated bv Africa's weak economic infrastructure, made worse by thewithdrawal of colonial administrators anda shortage of local stilled workers and manageis. stagnation of Western markets, and politicalThe overthrow of friendly regimes In Chana and Mali in theemonstrated ibe programs failure to guarantee political control for htcacow.f^
y the. the Soviet bureaucracy was questioning lite utility of economic aid to the Third World The (all of KhiuuVhev andore conservative aid policyhc elimination of umbrella credits, tnoie care in studying protect feasibility,ore preciseofto African needs and Soviet interesU Tbc new pragmatic aid approachoviet retrenchment in Africa.verage annual commitments fell byercent toear for (he succeeding decade, and Africa's share in total Soviet assistance packages declined even more. Tbe Kiemlin's only significant aid agreement over the nextears wasining peofect in Guinea, which securedseal supplyillion torn of bauxite annually. | |
itheconomic aid hadistant second place as the USSR rapidly concluded more easily implemented military transfer agreements to gain favor with new Marxist regimes In Angola. Ethiopia, and Mozambique. For these states combined, military aid offers averaged almostillion per year5hile econniriic extensions averaged lessillion annually. During, however, the Soviets stepped up their commitment* in response to increasing prestuies from these states.| |
USSR; Economic Aid Extended to Sub-Saharan Africa, by Recipient and Year
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