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Lifting Africa's Debt Sentence
A summit of financial ministers from the G-8 announced on Saturday that 18 of the world's poorest nations, most of which are in sub-Saharan Africa, will be relieved of their debt burdens. The beneficiaries – deemed to have satisfactory governments and economic structures – were selected via an intensive vetting system. The agreement has sparked opposition on both sides of the African aid question. Some feel that the qualifying conditions for relief were too strict, that other countries deserved to be included. But more prevalent is the opinion that the conditions were not stringent enough. Many fear that poor leadership and corruption will lead African countries to waste the money freed up from debt payments. In that vein, several wealthy countries are increasingly focusing on free trade rather than traditional aid packages. – YaleGlobal