Headline August 24, 2016/ ''' AFRICAN STUDENTS : *BULLYING POVERTY* '''



IN A TINY, TINY HUT   -a few hours north of Kigali, Rwanda's capital, just before the land starts lifting steeply towards to the volcanoes of the Virunga mountains-

ALL EX-STUDENTS  -a group of men and women in their mid-20s stand proudly around bins of seed potatoes. The group of who were taught how to run their own businesses by   *TechnoServe* -

An American non-profit, banded together to borrow money to grow high-quality tuber. The profits from this venture were enough to kick-start others. 

*IF ANYTHING explains the poverty in many parts of the  sub-Saharan Africa, it is not and never an unwillingness to work hard*.

Most of the continent's people still sweat to survive tilling fields with medieval tools. Nor is it because of lack of enterprise and optimism:

On the permanently traffic jammed streets of Lagos, Nigeria's main commercial city, hawkers gingerly ease their way between cars trying to sell almost anything from snacks to books, pirated  DVDs and even toilet seats.

Africans are far more likely to be self-employed than people in richer parts of the world, for the simple reason that without social safety nets, many of them must hustle or starve.

Yet for all Africans' energy and ingenuity, the region struggles to produce enough of the  productive and profitable  small  businesses it needs to lift hundreds of millions of people out of poverty.

The World bank reckons that  sub-Saharan Africa has only a quarter as many small businesses as Asia, relative to its population. Members of the OECD, a club of mostly rich countries, have about eight times as many formal small businesses per person.

Part of this is explained by the  poor climate  for enterprise. Indices of entrepreneurial activity place Africa countries far below even sluggish European ones such as Greece or Italy.

The gap grows even wider if you look at the number of big firms Africa produces. Apart from a handful from South Africa and Nigeria, few African companies have grown large enough to expand into markets beyond the continent, or even beyond their hometowns.

Africa has  produced just one of the world's  169  ''unicorns'' , the label given to privately tech  start-ups with a valuation of more than $1 billion.

Africa  Internet  Group, which adapts foreign business models such as e-commerce and mobile cab-hailing to African circumstances.

Yet the paucity of businesses is not due to shortage of opportunities to make money. In fact, given a small nudge new entrepreneurs seem able to make it hand over fist.

Student Emmanuel Bunani used his winnings to rent a plot of land to grow garlic for export. He now pays two people to work his fields and another three to shell and dry the garlic.

He has also come up with a novel way of making sure he gets a good price from the traders he sells to : he has invited them all to a group on WhatsApp, a mobile phone chat service, a gets them to bid against one another when his crop is ready.

On another farm a few hours away, Student Thacienne Ahunkuye a shy 26-year old, looks down at her feet as she explains how a year ago she was unemployed and had sat around for four years doing more or less nothing on her parent's small homestead.

Now she earns some  $300 -$400  a month -in a country with an annual average income of  $700-   from an egg farm she started after getting some training and help in applying for a small loan to buy 250 chicks.

She sells eggs internationally : twice a month a rickety lorry comes up to collect crates of of them to take to the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Yet the success of youngsters such as Mr. Bunani and  Ms Ahunkuye is also puzzling.

If is is really so easy to make money growing garlic or keeping chickens, why aren't more people doing it? And how can more and more students be encouraged to do so.

And all readers,  by the way, look up  Global Entrepreneurship Index :  GEI score quintiles 2016:

.-US (1)
.- Japan [30]
,- Greece [45]
.- Italy [48]
.- Iran [80]
.- Pakistan [109]

The Honour and Serving of the latest  Operational Research on........... *Students and Opportunities*  continues. Thank Ya all for reading and sharing forward and see you on the following ones;

With most respectful dedication to ''All The Great Followers and Followings'' on Twitter. Thank You for your Support.  See Ya all regularly on !WOW!  -the World Students Society and  !E-WOW!  -Ecosystem 2011:

''' Students Entrepreneurs '''

Good Night and God Bless

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


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