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BHU 2102 CLIMATOLOGY
ECT 304 SUBJECT METHODS - GEOGRAPHY
EGE 112 Development of Geographical Thought
EGE 212 GEOGRAPHY OF EAST AFRICA
EGE 222 BIOGEOGRAPHY
EGE 311 PHYSICAL GEOGRAPHY III
EGE 312 GEOGRAPHY OF AFRICA
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EGE 312 GEOGRAPHY OF AFRICA
MOUNT KENYA UNIVERSITY
EGE 312: GEOGRAPHY OF AFRICA
Facilitator Dr. Kennedy Obiero 0722551343
This course presents the dynamics of Africa’s spatial characteristics that cover both the physical and human realm. Areas to be covered will help ton understand the background of current physical, political and economic landscapes and their implications for Development of the continent.
Expected Learning Outcomes
By the end of the course, the student should be able to:
(a) Describe Africa’s environment, resource structure, problems of economic development, physical and human resources and their implications on development.
(b) Discuss the human aspects of African Geography with reference to cultural genesis, territorial organization and constraints to development.
Section A – Physical Realm
Introduction to Africa; Location and size, the contemporary map of Africa.
Section B – Human Realm
¾ Linguistic groups
¾ Agriculture and land use systems
¾ Transport and communication
¾ Regional Integration and Conflicts
Lectures, Q and A sessions, Tutorials, Group and class discussions and E-Learning
Instructional Materials and Equipment
Chalkboard/whiteboard, hand outs, maps, diagrams, websites
Teaching /learning approaches
- Q & A session
- Group & individual assignments and presentation
Group/individual assignments 15 %
Sit-in CAT 15 %
Final exam 70%
1. Best A.G. and De Blij, H.A. (1977) African Survey Wiley and Sons.
2. Clare, I. et. al. (2008). An Advanced Geography of Africa. London: Hulton.
3. Lionel W. L. (2009). A Geography of Africa. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
4. Maurice, S. (2008). Foundations of Geography. Bk3, JKF.
5. Pritchard J.M. (2006). Africa, A Study of Advanced students. London: Longman.
6. World Bank (1989) Sub-Saharan Africa: from crisis to sustainable Growth. Washington D.C.: World Bank.
7. White, Richard (1998). Africa in focus; a Physical, Human and Economic Geography. London: Macmillan.
8. Martin N. Phyllis and O’Leary Patrick (eds) (1987). Africa. Hong Kong: Macmillan.
Some Materials on Topics not covered in class due to the circumstances I explained in our last interaction
SOILS IN AFRICA
oil is one of the resources in East Africa and refers to the thin mantle covering the earth’s surface and acts as a medium for plant growth.
- It is a resource that has caused conflicts in Kenya and even in other parts of the world e.g., the Middle East.
- Soil is mostly formed from weathering/breakdown of rocks.
- Soil types in East Africa reflect the major geological formations in East Africa.
- Soil scientistists are known as pedologists. They approximate that it takes 1000 years for 3 cm of soils to form but it takes a few weeks or less to destroy the 3 cm due to human activities.
Factors influencing Soil Formation in East Africa
- Jenny (1940), an Americal pedologist came up with an equation to explain soil formation.
- The equation is expressed as:
S = f(c,p,v,r)T
S = Soil formation
F = function of
C = Climate
P = Parent material
V = Vegetation
R = Relief/Topography
T = Time
- According to Jenny, there are a number of factors influencing the formation of soils in East Africa.
- Each of the factors gives encouraging results in some regions while it may fail in others.
– Climate is the most influential of the factors of soil formation.
- Climate influences the type of weathering as high temperatures cause physical weathering while high rainfall is responsible for different types of chemical weathering.
- Areas of high rainfall and temperature have deep soils while areas deficient in rainfall have shallow stony soils.
- Most of Uganda has deep and fertile soils due to wet climate. Most of Northern and Northeastern Kenya is rocky due to moisture deficiency.
– Geological processes in East Africa has brought a variety of parent material. The nature of parent material influence soil characteristics. In areas with volcanic rocks, volcanic soils are formed such as in the Central Highlands of Kenya.
- Volcanic lava is responsible for the formation of clay soils (vertisols) always subject to waterlogging.
– Vegetation cover reduces the rate of erosion. Vegetation increases the amount of OM (organic material) which gives the soils a black-brown colour.
- There is a relationship between vegetation and soil biota.
- Soils in the Savanna region have high nitrogen due to the presence of Nitrogen fixing bacteria.
- Steep slopes have shallow soils due to erosion that removes whatever soil layer that is formed.
- Central Kena highlands, southern highlands of Tanzania and the western highlands of Uganda have experienced high rates of natural soil erosion reducing soil fertility.
- Low lying areas are affected by flooding and leaching.
– The length of time influences soil characteristics in East Africa. Areas of recent volcanic activity have young soils.
– This brief description indicates that soil forming factors are highly interdependent.
- At any particular time two or more factors may be influencing soil formation but one will be dominant.
- Africa has a rich linguistic background due to its interaction with the outside world over the centuries.
- Remember Historians through their rich archeological knowledge claim that Africa is the cradle of human kind. That the garden of eden may have perhaps been in Africa on a soft note. If Africa is the cradle of human kind, home for the first man, then we cannot dispute that the Garden of Eden, home for the first man was in Africa.
- Linguistic groups in Africa include:
– The Bantus, Nilotes and Kushites spread in most parts of the continent of Africa right from South Africa, Central Africa, West Africa and East Africa. For North Africa, external influence has a lot of effects.
– This is another main group who came to Africa initially as traders, later under armed conquest to control the rich gold and ivory trade, proceeding as slave traders while others spread Islam through Jihads. Mainly found in coastal regions where some of them have intermingled with local people like in East Africa ‘Swahili’.
– This is another major group that came to Africa through voyages of Exploration and Discovery, spread of Christianity and colonialism from countries in Europe including Britain, Portugal, Spain, France, German, Belgium among others. They ruled Africa for sometime and were ejected out in the wave for independence. A number of them still remained in Africa.
– Mainly Chinese as traders and now doing a lot of projects. The Japanese and Indians have their presence felt.
Scramble and Partition for Africa
- This involved the struggle to control Africa and its resources to develop Europe. The process was initially unsystematic through military intervention and those with strong military controlling a large part of Africa (Scramble). The second part was systematic through treaties among African States and European powers (Partition).
Causes of Scramble and Partition of Africa
- The scramble and partition of Africa was multi-faced i.e. it had multiple causes some of which related to the continent of Africa while others were mainly inherent among European countries.
- The factors can be divided into:
– these were meant to strengthen the economic base of European countries.
- The economic factors include:
Need for raw materials
– These were for industries in Europe that had under through the industrial revolution. Tropical climate in Africa favoured a variety of crops just as was in Latin America. The crops included;
sugarcane, cotton, coffee, tea, cocoa, palm oil
among others. Large lands were alienated by Europeans for plantations of agriculture.
Market for European goods
– Africa provided a virgin market for European goods from European industries. The goods include; textiles, sweets, some machinery among others. African colonies provided outlet for European goods.
– Africa provided cheap labour especially after slave trade was abolished. The labour was used in the plantations. Cheap wages would be paid.
Presence of minerals
– Africa was rich in a variety of minerals such as gold, diamond, and copper among others. More territory meant more minerals.
Respect among European nations
– The larger the territory, the more the respect.
– Nations defeated in wars fought in Europe came to Africa to regain their prestige. German and France are among such countries during the Franco-Prussian Wars. It was easier to win war in Africa.
– Some African kings invited Europeans to support them against other African kings giving Europeans a foothold in Africa.
The Missionary Factor
– The need to spread Christianity and replace African traditional religion largely thought to barbaric was also a driving factor. Pacification by Christianity was followed by the colonialist. ‘The flag followed the cross’. Missionaries prepared the way for colonialist.
Need to bring peace to Africa
– a continent ravaged by tribal wars and disease.
Need to spread Western Education
– The educated Africans were supposed to serve the interests of the Europeans. This was however later used in the struggle for independence.
– That sex was cheap/free in Africa.
The Economics of Colonialism
- Africa was brought into the global capitalist economy in survival for the fittest. Economic competition and survival.
- Metropolitan economies grew where capital cities and towns thrived with modern monetary economy – more people, goods and services, industries, business and trade, among others. Rural economies largely remained agricultural.
- Export economy was largely of agricultural raw materials from agriculture and minerals. This was a source of foreign exchange.
- Imports largely industrial goods were expensive and this was the genesis of Africa’s trade and economic problems – deficits, debts among others.
- African economies were largely in the hands of foreign companies such as AGIP, BAT, Coca Cola, Standard Chartered, Barclays just to mention few.
- The companies’ repatriated profits back home largely developing the western capitals at the expense of African countries.
- Banking and financial sector discouraged African entrepreneurs by denying them credit facilities as they did not have collateral.
Political Map of Africa
- Though part of the political map of Africa has been influenced by the present of physical features, a large part of the maps had its seeds in colonialism.
- In pre-colonial Africa, political boundaries were largely non-existent.
- There were migrations both voluntary and non-voluntary caused by a avriet of factors including disease and tribal wars.
- Colonialism divided Africa into spheres of influence among the European Nations. These later became the African countries as we have them today.
- At the dawn of independence for the African countries, the spheres became African Countries – independent Nations with colonial borders and their own flags replacing colonial flags.
- Post independence saw civil wars and further subdivision of countries established during colonialism leading to the revision of Africa’s political map the case of South Sudan is the best.
Colonialism and Africa’s Political Map
- Colonialism divided Africa into political regions or countries slightly before 1960.
- Colonial influence was felt in; East Africa, West Africa, North Africa,, Central Africa and South Africa.
- Division of Africa was based on the following criteria.
Countries free from colonialism
- - They never experienced colonialism.
- - Ethiopia and Sierra Leone are in this category.
Countries still under colonialism by 1960
- According to colonial rule, each country had its own special colour and flag. This is evidenced by the current colours on African countries in our Atlases.
- The colonialists who dominated Africa before 1960 were; British, French, Portuguese, Italians, Spaniards and the German.
- By 1968, all African countries were free from colonialism
- Each country had its own colour, flag, government, policies and political trends, constitution/law among others.
NB – The shade of Africa also dependent on physical features e.g., lakes, mountains, among others.
Question – Account for the shape of Africa’s political map.
- There is a general consensus that life (human beings) started in Africa. Early creatures that evolved through stages into human beings or modern man lived in the African continent.
- It was in Africa that life began.
- Human numbers has been a major concern among many professionals – economists, politicians, agriculturalists, geographers, demographers among others.
- Population size influence food consumption, labour forces, voting power, per capita income, among other aspects of the economy.
Population Size and Distribution in Africa
- A concern by human beings has been population increase in terms of numbers.
(a) Beginning Industrial Revolution – 800 million people
(b) 1750-1900 – 1600 million (population doubled)
(c) 1964 – 3200 million
(d) End of 20th century – 6.5 billion (Population explosion).
- Generally population distribution in Africa ia unevenly distributed
- This is accounted for by a number of physical/environmental factors as well as human factors.
- The earth’s life provides environmental riches or resources which determine whether or not a region or spot is inhabited or not.
- The degree to which a region is populated depends on the way the natural conditions are arranged.
- People tend to move to zones having conducive environment.
- A number of physical and human factors determine polulation distribution and density over the African continent
– Rainfall and temperature are the key elements.
- Densely populated areas have high rainfall greater than 1000mm with cool temperatures of between 15 and 30oC.
- These have high potential for agriculture.
- Areas of low rainfall are sparsely populated and are peopled mainly by pastoralists.
- Due to high population in high potential areas, marginal areas are recipients of a large number of population from over-populated high potential areas.
high altitude areas have low temperatures and are not suitable for human habitation (2000 m and above).
- Atmospheric constituents particularly oxygen are inadequate making life difficult/imposible.
- Steep slope constrain movement of people and machinery.
- Construction of transport networks is difficult.
- Densely populated areas are those with gentle slopes 1300-2000 m.
- Cool highlands with fertile soils have high population.
– High population concentrate in areas with fertile soils for example volcanic and alluvial well drained soils.
- These are favourable for a variety of agricultural activities.
- Sandy soils of northern, north eastern, northern and central Africa have sparse population. They are not suitable for agriculture.
- Clay in Sudan plains are not attractive to human settlements as poorly drained areas are usually waterlogged.
– Places with minerals have dense population nucleated settlements. Diamonds in parts of South Africa and East Africa have attracted high population.
Pests and diseases
– Parts of Africa favour a variety of pests mainly tse-tse fly and mosquitoes that cause trypanosomiasis and malaria respectively. East Africa’s Mkiombo woodlands and Lambwe Valley are sparsely populated because of the tse tse fly. Population in Africa is also ravaged by HIV/AIDs.
e.g. Nairobi attract large populations due to business, employment and administrative functions.
such as Mombasa, Dar es Salaam and Durban attract high populations
have large population due to job opportunities.
– people prefer relatively secure areas. People prefer to stay in camps until their security is guaranteed.
Presence of infrastructural facilities
– schools, roads, hospitals and electricity among others attract high population.
- Distribution of population according to age and sex.
- A population pyramid is used to show age and sex studies.
- Age composition of people/population.
- Distribution of people according to age.
- Influenced by;
- Fertility(Number of children)
- Mortality of life expectancy
- Broadly population distributed in three age groups.
- <15 year olds-Young people and children
- 16 to 64-Middle aged
- >64-Year lds
Draw the respective pyramid
- The pyramid is broad at the base meaning the majority population is <15 years of age.
(a) Non-productive – do not do paying work/job.
(b) Dependants – school going children
(c) Mainly teenagers
(d) Dominant groups indicate high birth rates
16 – 64 Years
(a) Represent the working, reproductive and productive population
(b) They support under 20 years and above 60 years of the population
(c) They decrease in productivity as they approach retirement
(a) Small group of people due to high mortality rates
(b) This due to low life expectancy rates (life expectancy low because of HIV/AIDS, wars/violence among others)
(c) Are dependants – supported by 16 to 64
(d) Affected by disease due to low immunity
(e) Expensive in terms of pensions as they are retirees
(f) Some live in welfare homes as there is little care at home.
Sex Composition in Africa
- This is the ratio of male to female in a population
- For unknown reasons the number of males at birth exceed female births
- However, mortality of males throughout life exceeds that of female world wide.
- Number of females is higher throughout life most of the time.
Problems Associated with a Large Population
- Africa’s population has continued to show an upward trend.
- This bring an imbalance between human population and resources particularly food
- Problems of high population include:
exerting pressure on existing resources. Sustainable use of the resources is impossible.
– as land is cultivated continuously to produce food to feed the population. The land is vulnerable to erosion and exhaustion.
Clogging of irrigation channels
by silt due to upstream land degradation.
Accelerated soil erosion
due to removal of tree cover. This also reduces OM. Reduced infiltration and increased surface runoff.
due to reduced transpiration. Destruction of forests generate harsh climate – dry climate.
Increased demand for fuel wood and timber
. Majority of the population depend on firewood for cooking.
– high population calls for higher demand and supply. Water quantity and quality decline.
– job opportunities do not match the increased labour supply.
There is inadequate social and economic infrastructure
– pressure on available facilities; schools, housing, hospitals, among others. Cape Town, Addis Ababa, Nairobi, Lagos among other major cities in Africa experiencing housing problems.
- This may be caused due to natural change or migration.
- It is the balance between births and deaths that determine natural population change.
- Natural increase occurs when there are more births and deaths.
- Natural decrease takes place when there are more deaths than births.
- Decline in mortality/death rate in Africa due to:
(a) Extensive vaccination – measles, small-pox, polio among others.
(b) Expansion in medical facilities
(c) Improved living standards in terms of food, housing and sanitation
(d) Improved primary health care and community based rural health projects.
Since 2002, there has been major decline in birth rates
(a) Increased use of contraceptives
(b) Acceptance of family planning
(c) Increased literacy levels
(d) Increase in cost of living.
- Before 1960,high fertility levels
(a) Early start and late continuation of reproductive life – early marriages
(b) Improved nutrition
(c) Low level i-Future of contraceptives
(d) Adolescent facility
(e) Sex prevalence of children-pretence boy to girl
- Movement of people from one place to another
- Voluntary and Involuntary
- Temporal and Permanent
- External and Internal
- Intervnet migration in Africa
Migrations dealt push and pull factors
- Factor forcing people out of a place
- Limited agricultural land-witchcrafts
- Food insecurity
- Under employment and Un employment
- Low wages
- Hard rural conditions
-Factors that attract people
- Attractions of urban life
- Better employment opportunities
Better education facility
- Better standards of living
- Q-Discuss effects of migration
- (a)Sending areas
- (b)Receiving areas
AGRICULTURE IN AFRICA
Agricultural is one of the oldest forms of economic activities since the creation of the earth. Remember of the sons of Isaac i.e., Esau was to till the land for a living. Agriculture provides food for the world's growing population. For some economies such as Kenya, Agriculture is the main stay or backbone of the economy. Remember, 'a hungry person is worse than a person who has taken opium'. So we must do all that is possible to provide food for the growing population. We cannot be proud of our independence if we cannot feed our population, if we are always begging for food.
Agriculture involves both the cultivation of crops and rearing of domestic animals for both food and commercial value. This means we have both subsistence and commercial farming in Africa.
Major areas in relation to agriculture include:
(a) Accounting for the spatial and temporal variation of agricultural activities
(b) Types of agriculture in Africa
(c) A critical evaluation of the role of agriculture in the economy of Africa
(d) What might be of interest to you.
Factors influencing the spatio-temporal characteristics of agriculture in Africa
The variation of agriculture in Africais affected by both natural and human (nthropogenic factors). Some of these factor are discussed in the following section.
(1) Natural Factors
These are also known as environmental factors. For these factors, human being have little control over them. They are very crucial and they include:
- Climate is the key factor especially rainfall in terms of amount, reliability and spatial variability. Areas with large amount of rainfall that comes at the time it is expected (reliable) and well distributed encourages agricultural activities both cultivation of crops and rearing of animals. A variety of crops can be cultivated. Rainfall is responsible for increasing soil moisture and soil moisture is a crucial ingredient in photosynthesis where carbohydrates areanufactured. The movement of manufcture food substances in the plant is possible in solution. With a large amount of rainfall, there are high rates of evapotranspiration and rapid biomass accumulation. Favourable temperature are also crucial and warm temperatures encourages plant growth.
Relief and Topography
- flat areas favour mechanized agriculture though sometimes they may be vulnerable to flooding and can also be waterlogged. gentle slopes are good for farming because they are well drained.
- this is the thin mantle covering the earth's surface. Soils provide the nutrients such as Nitrogen, potassium, calcium among other required for plant growth. Volcanic soils on the slopes of Mt. Meru, Mt. Kenya, Mt. Elgon, Mt. Camerron and others support the growing a variety of crops. In relation to the soil factor menthion soil texture, soil composition, soil acidity, soil structute among others.
(iv) Pests and diseases
- Crops and animals are vulnerable to pests and diseases. Black berry disease for instance affects coffee while trypanosomiasis affect animals. Most the pests and diseases are favoured by warm humid conditions. These increase the cost of agricultural output making agriculture an expensive venture. READ MORE
(2) Socio-cultural factors
- These are also known as anthropogenic/human related factors. They include:
People's culture in Africa
- The people's cultural influences their agricultural activities. The Maasai of Kenya and Tanzania derive a lot of pride in large herds of animals and therefore they would be seen rearing livestock in large numbers. Status and prestige of the Maasai depends on the number of cattle owned. This discourages from even selling the animals. Quantity is the order of the day and not quality.
(ii) Religious factors
- different religions have different attitudes to crops and animals. Muslims in Africa do not engage in pig farming as pigs are thought to be unclean according to Islam. Some religions encourage people to be vegetarians and the implication of this discouraging slaughter or even rearing of animals.
(iii) Land tenure
- this refers to the system of land ownership. It is divided into three: tenancy, owner occupier and communal ownership. In tenancy
INDUSTRY IN AFRICA (INTRODUCTION)
- Africa is not yet an industrialized continent compared to other continents.
- Africa cannot be compared to Russia, Europe and America.
- However, there are some pockets of industry in Africa for example – Egypt, South Africa among others.
Categories of Industries in Africa
– also known as extractive involving extraction of raw materials from the environment e.g., farming, fishing, forestry and mining.
– involving manufacture of primary products e.g., crude oil refining, food processing, vehicle assembly, cement manufacturing among others.
– involving service sectors e.g., health, education, tourism, trade, insurance, transport.
– provide information and expertise.
Factors controlling industrial Location
– industries using bulky and perishable raw materials must locate near the source of raw materials such as sugarcane refining and milk processing respectively.
– industries producing perishable products needs to locate near market areas for example bakeries and confectionaries locate in major markets due to readily available market.
– transport networks are critical in the transportation of raw materials to industry and transportation of finished goods to market including external markets involving export by sea or air.
– some industries are labour intensive requiring large number of manual units of largely manual labour. Some other industries are capital intensive requiring largely machinery. Labour intensive industries locate in populous areas while capital intensive locate anywhere where provided other factors are favourable.
Availability of capital
– cash and credit to pay for labour and machinery among other costs.
–allow investment and also create goodwill.
– electricity, natural gas, firewood among others. Energy drives all sectors of economy including industry.
Role of industry in the Economy of Africa
- As one of the sectors for economic development, industry has an effect on:
for skilled, semi-skilled and manual labour generating income for those involved. However many Africans are largely unskilled and semi-skilled meaning they are lowly remunerated.
Industry provides market
for agricultural goods mainly raw materials for agro-based industries as well as food for the labourforce in industry.
Industry supplies inputs
for agriculture e.g. pesticides, fertilizers among other agrochemicals.
– this through export of industrial products
Development of infrastructure such as roads, electricity among others
Challenges to Industrialization in Africa
- Africa still has
a limited number of industries
especially heavy industries.
– Investment capital for industry among African actual and potential entrepreneurs limited.
African industries largely agro-based
and there are limited heavy industries such as iron and steel industries.
Many industries in Africa are foreign owned
leading to repatriation of profits abroad. The Europeans, Asians individually, through companies or multinationals control industrial capital and ownership.
industries cause pollution to the natural environment water, air, noise, light among other forms of pollution.
YOU ARE ADVICED TO READ MORE ON YOUR OWN.
TRADE IN AFRICA
- Trade involves exchange of goods and services on a local or international scale.
- It arises from the fact that no country is self sufficient or reliant.
- Some countries have comparative advantage in the production of goods and services. They can cheaply produce a commodity.
- The principle of complementarity also applies in the sense that some countries have demand while others have supply.
- This complementarity and comparative advantage creates conditions for exchange.
Some Terms Associated with Trade
(a) Bilateral trade – trade between two countries
(b) Multi-lateral trade – trade among many countries
(c) Visible export – Export of physical goods e.g., tea, coffee.
(d) Invisible exports – Export of labour/services
(e) Balance of trade – This is the difference between the value of imports and exports.
- If the value of imports is high than exports, a country experiences a trade deficit. This is unfavourable terms of trade and is mostly the case in Africa. Favourable terms exist when value of exports is high than imports. Rarely the case in most African countries.
Question – Account for the unfavourable trade between Africa and Asian countries.
Importance of trade in Africa
Helps in the importation of goods, services, medicine among other vital commodities.
Helps consumers to buy from the cheapest source.
Earns foreign exchanges to countries exporting goods/services or both.
Allows exchange of factors of production i.e. capital, labour, law materials and entrepreneurship.
It is a vehicle for the exchange of technical skills and education.
It provides a market for surplus production among countries.
Creates international competition in production of goods and services.
Creates interdependence (mutual interdependence), international peace and cooperation.
Limitations of International Trade
(a) There is limited trade among African countries due to similarity of goods and services.
(b) Africa export raw materials either in raw form or semi-processed with little value added thus earning limited foreign exchange.
(c) Africans have low purchasing power has many do not have well paying jobs.
(d) Cash crop economies have colonial orientation making Africa produce raw materials for European industries.
(e) Industry limits production of food crops for local consumption threatening food security in Africa.
(f) Most of the African economies are subsistence with production largely for local consumption.
(g) High production costs – making it difficult to produce quality goods for high export earnings.
(h) Vagaries of weather reduce production of agricultural exports.
Foreign Trade and Development in Africa
It allows for investment in expensive long term low return investment e.g., education, dams, electricity, fibre optic cable, roads, etc.
Eables countries to earn foreign exchange
Trade deficits characterize African trade (debt burden in Africa partly due to unfavourable foreign trade).
Creates taste/demand for exotic goods some of which are very expensive
Money earned from foreign trade may be misappropriated by leaders – invested in personal accounts abroad enriching individuals instead of citizens. Leaders rich with foreign accounts.
Depreciation of local currencies makes exports cheap and imports very expensive.
TO BE CONTINUED
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