PanAfrican Journal of Governance and Development (Aug 2023)

The Effects of Neocolonialism on Africa’s Development

  • Obikwelu Ifeanyi John,
  • Gérard-Marie Messina,
  • Odumegwu, Andy Chukwuemeka

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 4, no. 2
pp. 3 – 35


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This article examines the effects of neocolonialism on Africa’s development and explores potential strategies to counter its negative impact. The legacy of colonialism has cast a long shadow over the continent, with neocolonial practices posing significant obstacles to sustained socio-economic growth and self-determination. This study aims to extensively understand neocolonialism’s multifaceted impacts on Africa’s economic growth and development by employing a qualitative approach and analyzing secondary data sources. The analysis highlights the intricate dynamics of neocolonial control in Africa, including economic dominance, political interference, cultural subjugation, and power imbalances. Moreover, it sheds light on the role of foreign aid and trade, multinational corporations, and international financial institutions in perpetuating neocolonial practices. These means and mechanisms enable the former colonial powers to exert indirect influence over Africa’s economic and political landscape, impeding genuine progress. Findings reveal that Africa’s nominal and flag independence following decolonization has not translated into genuine autonomy and self-sufficiency. Instead, the continent continues to face economic dependence, corruption, and stunted development due to neocolonial exploitation. The exploitation of Africa’s vast natural and human resources, unequal trade relationships, and support for authoritarian regimes have all contributed to the continent’s ongoing struggles. To address these challenges, the article proposes tentative strategies and solutions. These include promoting fair trade practices, empowering African nations to regain control over their resources and economies, promoting regional integration and cooperation, strengthening governance and institutions, and fostering a more equitable global economic order. Africa can achieve genuine economic growth, social progress, and self-determination by countering neocolonial practices and fostering sustainable development. Acknowledging the complex web of neocolonial dynamics is crucial for formulating effective strategies and policies to dismantle neocolonial structures and promote sustainable development.