Daewoo to Buy Madagascar
March 15, 2009 11:53 AM Subscribe
Korea blog the Marmot's Hole reports on the crisis in Madagascar:
posted by KokuRyu (18 comments total)
9 users marked this as a favorite
Madagascar’s defense minister has resigned after security forces opened fire on anti-government protesters Saturday (in late January), killing 28. More than 100 have been killed since anti-government protests began two weeks ago. And what may have been the impetus for the protests? The final straw for many was the mooted plan to lease one million acres in the south of the country to the Korean firm Daewoo for intensive farming. Malagasy people have deep ties with their land and this was seen by many as a betrayal by their president.
The Financial Times
has been covering this story:
Daewoo Logistics of South Korea has secured farmland in Madagascar to grow food crops for Seoul, in a deal that diplomats and consultants said was the largest of its kind... The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organisation warned this year that the race by some countries to secure farmland overseas risked creating a “neo-colonial” system.
According to a Korean agricultural group: Daewoo Logistics is a subsidiary of the South Korean conglomerate Daewoo Corporation. In November 2008, world media reported that it was securing rights to 1.3 million hectares of farmland in Madagascar -- half the country's arable soils.
Daewoo Logistics: FT is LIES! ALL LIES! Daewoo Logistics — its corporate executives no doubt sitting on the porch of some bungalow in Antananarivo sipping gin-and-tonics and bitching about how the natives can’t fix a proper cup of tea — said the Financial Times got its report on the company’s recent deal for Madagascar’s farm land all wrong.
It’s Not Imperialism! It’s a Uniquely Korean Dream! I feel more convinced than before that Korea needs Daewoo’s success in Madagascar, not only to prove that its model is different from the models of Britain, the United States, the Netherlands, France, Germany and Japan during their colonial pasts, but also that it is setting a new precedent for both African states and outside investors to benefit from.
Some background on the crisis in Madagascar:
The latest, and ongoing, spate of violence has President Marc Ravalomanana
pitted against the charismatic Andry Rajoelina
, former mayor of the capital, Antananarivo. Since the power tussle started on 26 January, more than 100 lives had been lost
. Rajoelina has been able to mobilize his supporters to take to the streets of Antananarivo to demand Ravalomanana's ousting on the grounds of his alleged "autocratic" style of government. UNHCR provides some analysi
s, plus a Q+A to the latest in the Madagascar Crisis.