Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Videos

As promised, before I left the land of high speed internet (Canada) these videos were put onto youtube.

I didnt realize how poor the quality of a youtube video was until now.

Oh well, enjoy.

Me on the back of a motorbike with Chiko - we're entering the town of Kabompo

The neighbour's little boy is dancing up a storm one morning.

Here we get stuck on a desert plain on our way to visit some beekeepers.

Chiko and I are preparing to cross the kabompo river - I find out I'm getting in with the bike.

Evans and Seleyi are standing in the middle of swarming bees at the factory.

All is well in Mwinilunga.  The rains are heavy and the honey season is almost over.

My guest blogger will be writing very soon.


Megan Putnam said...

Ah, Mark these vids are great!

Can't wait to read what Chris has to say.

Also wondering if you're going to post some thoughts on Canada's decision to move their foreign aid away from some African countries including Zambia and toward others in the Americas and Middle East.

How can this change be used to encourage entrepreneurship of local Zambians and/or hinder development?

Take care

Mark Hemsworth said...


You were asking about this decision on where to direct foreign aid.

I believe the biggest impact we can have in Canada is to expose the government for making decisions (big decisions) behind closed doors. Transparency should be paramount, and why isn’t the opposition whistle blowing on this one, especially all the bill c-293 folks. Some countries weren’t even told! Imagine if you are creating a budget for a country and a large part of your income was cancelled and no one bothered to tell you! What is this, grade school?

When I look at the list of countries I feel its too obvious that the reasoning was political. Columbia, west bank, Caribbean….come on, these are American hot spots and everyone knows it.

Some say they weren’t getting much money anyway, however, I would like to see the funding to each of the countries that were cut but not just last year, I’d like to see it over the past 15 years. Are they naturally phasing out, or is it a Conservative Party decision made in the last 3 years?

Canadian aid in Zambia and Malawi is fairly ineffective from what I’ve seen and heard… which doesn’t mean we should cancel it for that country, but rather work hard to improve it.

Paul Collier suggests (for land-locked countries) that we work hard at making good neighbours for the LDC (lesser developed countries) because this way we can see progress. I think he states that "no landlocked country has ever developed without having a good neighbour." (this also makes me wonder if EWB’s efforts wouldn’t be better in other countries? Sure Ghana makes sense, but the other 3 – Burkina, Zambia, Malawi are all landlocked and without a wealthy neighbour)

But Megan, I'm not sure if I get your actual question regarding entrepreneurs. I see the decision as having almost no effect at all. Actually, to answer properly, I would need to know how much of the aid money was directed towards development vs. humanitarian aid, and then how much of the portion (on the development side) was promoting value chains.

Hope all is well, don’t forget to give me an update on the chapter.


Frank said...

How very nice of the canadian govt. I thought Canadians had investments in Zambia. Honestly what would Toronto listed First Quantum Minerals be without the Kansanshi mine in Northwestern Zambia and its 20% shareholding in Mopani copper mines. These investments constitute more than 60% of FQM assets and earnings. I guess this counts for nothing.