Causes of Poverty in Haiti

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  • CAUSES OF POVERTY IN HAITI
    • Deforestation
      • trees are cut down to make charcoal for/by the poorer people
        • extreme weather conditions cause erosion as there are no trees to protect the ground
          • topsoil eroded
      • Haiti used to have 80% forest cover but now only has 1%
      • extreme weather conditions cause erosion as there are no trees to protect the ground
        • topsoil eroded
    • Recurrence of environmental disasters
      • hurricanes and floods destroy farmland
        • extreme weather events
      • people's lives are taken away and are unable to recover
    • Population growth
      • the population is growing but land available for growing food is decreasing
        • trees are cut down to make charcoal for/by the poorer people
      • Inappropriate aid given
        • aid has been given for an extended amount of time
          • constant emergency
            • Recurrence of environmental disasters
              • hurricanes and floods destroy farmland
                • extreme weather events
              • people's lives are taken away and are unable to recover
          • many have become reliant
            • 25% of population reliant on aid
            • to fix the issue lots of funding is needed over decades rather than just one year
        • to fix the issue lots of funding is needed over decades rather than just one year
      • No stable government
        • with no real government Haiti is unable to come up with a plan for poverty
        • UN Peacekeepers in control rather than local police
        • failed state
        • food riots over availability of food
          • price of food is unstable
      • Trade issues
        • Haiti was pushed towards 'free trade' in 1980's by World Bank etc
          • didn't help farmers as US imports were now cheaper
            • 30 Haitian dollars for one pound of US rice but 60 Haitian dollars for local rice
          • it made food cheaper but more people became jobless
            • food riots over availability of food
              • price of food is unstable
          • No stable government
            • with no real government Haiti is unable to come up with a plan for poverty
            • UN Peacekeepers in control rather than local police
            • failed state
      • Foreign debt
        • Haiti has a total external debt of $1.2 billion
        • the loans Duvalier family, corrupt and oppressive rulers between 1964 and 1986, incurred account for approx., 40% of Haiti's debt
        • considered for the HIPC (Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative) to relieve the debt
      • Foreign Involvement
        • USA and US TNC's
        • high level of poverty has its roots in the slave trade and colonialism
          • Independence did not bring prosperity or peace
          • great slave owning powers mounted an economic blockade against Haiti to enforce payment of the debt
            • crippled the economy
            • USA, France, Spain and  Britain
        • American occupation of Haiti used to secure the island as a location for US companies involved in agriculture and mining
          • before they left they installed a 'puppet government' in Port-au-Prince to look after US business interests
            • development outside the capital was of no importance
            • the arrival of the Duvalier's after the Americans was thought to be a ray of sunshine but turned out to be misery and poverty
              • US supported Duvalier's regime as they were allies
                • before they left they installed a 'puppet government' in Port-au-Prince to look after US business interests
                  • development outside the capital was of no importance
                  • the arrival of the Duvalier's after the Americans was thought to be a ray of sunshine but turned out to be misery and poverty
                    • US supported Duvalier's regime as they were allies
                      • countryside got neglected and rural poverty deepened
                        • foreign grants and World Bank loans were wasted on consumptive lifestyle
                          • countryside got neglected and rural poverty deepened
                    • foreign grants and World Bank loans were wasted on consumptive lifestyle

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