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2018 | OriginalPaper | Chapter

6. To Brexit and Beyond: Africa and the United Kingdom

Author : Alex Vines

Published in: Africa and the World

Publisher: Springer International Publishing

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Chapter 6 argues that British foreign policy over Africa in the Cold War era seems to be one driven by guilt over colonialism, migration worries, and fears of terrorism, and the looming trade-stress test and interests mainly with South Africa. The Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition and its successor Conservative government have rebooted trade and investment promotion, and have been rebuilding the UK’s diplomatic network in Africa. Britain has been engaged in UN peacekeeping, contributing to deployments in South Sudan and Somalia. It is also engaged in some military capacity-building, but only in selected African countries such as Kenya, Sierra Leone, and Gambia. But with Brexit, the author predicts that there is likely to be greater de-prioritisation of Africa in British policies as the Theresa May administration shifts the goal posts.

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The DFID decided that obvious aid cuts during 2005—the “Year of Africa”—would be too embarrassing, but cuts did occur, such as for middle-income countries like Botswana. The All Party Parliamentary Groups are run by backbench MPs. In 2009 there were 15 APPGs on sub-Saharan African countries or topics (Africa, Angola, Botswana, Ethiopia, Ghana, Madagascar, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Somaliland, South Africa, Sudan, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and the Great Lakes, and genocide prevention).
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To Brexit and Beyond: Africa and the United Kingdom
Alex Vines
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