Bringing jobs, energy to Sierra Leone or another African land grab?

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Rice farmer in Sierra Leone (Wikimedia)

World Radio Switzerland | Tuesday, 16 February 2010

It’s the largest agricultural investment ever in the West African nation of Sierra Leone—and a Swiss firm is behind it. Addax Bioenergy, based in Geneva, just signed a deal that will allow it to produce 100,000 cubic meters of bioethanol from sugar cane within the next two years alone.

In Sierra Leone, people are enthusiastic and looking forward to more jobs and benefits. This deal also suggests that Switzerland won’t be left behind in the race for productive land on the African continent.

In the last four years, an area the size of Germany has been bought or rented to produce food and fuel in Africa. But not by Africans, nor for Africans, say critics. They worry that virtually no safeguards are in place to prevent such investments from turning into land grabs. Lucas Chambers has the story:

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Original source: WSR
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3 Comments


  1. Mohamed Conteh
    21 Jun 2010

    After the war the only reliable resources that Sierra Leoneans were left with is the land.We shall soon loose this to so called foreign investors whom I refer to as "economic imperialists". In no time we shall be slaves in our own country begging for land from the powerful economic imperialists. It is unacceptable and morrally wrong to utilise the arable land of a country that cannot feed its people to produce bio fuels to feed cars mainly in the west. The land so utilised is "Blood Land"

  2. Abdul Rahman
    17 May 2010

    Sierra Leone is yet again on another path towards its destruction. The production of bioenergy in African countries and its use in western countries raises ethical concerns. Will the costs outweigh the benefits. But who cares?

  3. Jon
    17 Feb 2010

    Only an idiot will believe in such fantasies

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