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Cape Verde Strategic Studies Group, Inc
was incorporated as a non-profit organization to "further promote scientific, educational, and charitable purposes, all for the public welfare and security of The Republic of Cape Verde and its Diaspora. Its self-declared mission is "to help improve policy and decision making through research and analysis", using its "core values of quality and objectivity." The Group conducts research and engages in advocacy in areas such as social policy, political strategy, economy, science or technology issues, industrial or business policies, health care and national security.

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                                           Cape Verde Today

Business and political leaders in Cape Verde are thinking strategically; they see their country’s future in terms of its international advantages. The goal is to find the right niche markets.

This tiny African island nation, seemingly lost in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, has big ambitions and a pretty fair idea of how to fulfill them. Less than two generations after winning independence from Portugal, and two decades after establishing a multi-party democracy, Cape Verde is often hailed as a beacon in a continent beset by seemingly endless forms of bad government. “Few places... demonstrate the promise of Africa better than Cape Verde,” US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said during a landmark visit to the archipelago last year. “Some places have certain aspects that can be comparable. But no place has put it all together, with good governance, transparency, accountability, the rule of law, a democracy that is delivering for its people, lifting them out of poverty, putting them now in a category of middle-income countries in the world.”

Does Cape Verde have problems, amid the waving palms and idyllic beaches? Of course. The country’s per capita gross domestic product (GDP) is just US$4,000, less than a tenth of the U.S. level. Unemployment, poverty, and inequality are all pretty high. And to make matters worse, there are few natural resources, most land is no good for farming, and some is little better than a desert. So what is there to be optimistic about?

“Cape Verdeans have an open outlook toward the world,” said Prime Minister José Maria Neves. “If the United States does something, then Cape Verdeans will soon ask why they can’t do it as well. This forces any government to do more and more.The attitude of wanting to do more — that is the engine of growth for Cape Verde.” Many Cape Verdeans reckon this global outlook is rooted in their history. The islands were uninhabited until 1462,when Portuguese sailors reaching farther and farther down the Atlantic in their tiny caravels stumbled upon them and founded the first settlement. Quickly the archipelago’s position some 600 kilometers off the west coast of Africa dictated a central but inglorious role for Cape Verde in globalization — as a slave entrepôt on the route to the New World.

Location has always been a dominant factor for Cape Verde, and it remains so today. But now smart young Cape Verdeans with business degrees, not bullwhips, are in charge. They use words like “good governance,” “leverage,” and “public-private partnership.” Some people look at the map, remember that the excellent deep-water harbor at Mindelo used to be an important 19th-century coaling station and a center for Atlantic navigation, and suggest that Cape Verde could become a 21st-century freight hub with container vessels transshipping cargo for delivery up and down the West African coast. 

Maybe, but it’s an idea that has yet to set the shipping world alight. Others see a 21st-century hub, yes, but for modern offshore financial services. And this is where good governance comes in. Cape Verde won praise from the International Monetary Fund in 2009 for its economic management during the crisis. It has graduated from low to middle income status in U.N. tables and is joining the World Trade Organization. Several years of focused government spending have more than doubled average incomes over the last 20 years, in U.S. dollar terms, while increasing life expectancy.

Many of the problems that plague so many African countries — corruption, political instability, and institutional insecurity — have been largely resolved. So what better niche market than offshore banking services, both for West Africans looking for a safe haven that is closer than the Caymans and international investors looking for a foothold into Africa?

The government has been investing heavily — heavily, that is, for a country of just 430,000 people — in ports and airports, including a US$38 million upgrade for the main airport. But the main goal is to promote tourism and inter-island travel and make import-export operations easier.

Prime Minister Neves holds a degree in administration from a top Brazilian business school, and many of the country’s movers and shakers speak pragmatically of incremental, grassroots improvements. Diaspora, fast-forward Textbooks describe Cape Verde as a place with few natural resources, but many Cape Verdeans speak of one resource that the textbooks ignore: their hundreds of thousands of fellow countrymen (and women) who live abroad, mostly in the United States. Many of them have levels of education and first-world business and professional experience that can be invaluable to their native land. One such individual of Cape Verdean decent will return to the islands and started a company that he says can help transform the country.

“The new age of Cape Verde is upon us. It is as bustling and fast-paced as ever, at this time, it is more connected. It is connected to people and prosperity. It is connected to your heart and soul. It is connected to knowledge, national development and the greater global village. It is connected to our future”. - Vincent C. DaSilva

For many years, Cape Verde helped to shape relations between the Old World and New. Initially it did so in ways remembered painfully, as a key slaving entrepôt, then later as an important staging post for more honorable transatlantic navigation. Today the islands once again wish to influence hemispheric relations, in part by leveraging their strategic location but perhaps even more so by emphasizing their emergence as a cultural bridge that blends African, European, and American cultures. In so doing, the country offers itself as a stepping-stone in the middle of the ocean. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made a landmark visit to Cape Verde, at the end of a seven-nation swing through Africa. During her visit, Clinton made it quite clear that she was impressed with what she saw. Chatting with reporters about her pre-trip State Department briefings, Clinton recalled that most African nations had "many more problems than positives. In Cape Verde, there were so many more positives than problems."

The country receives wide praise for the progress it has made since becoming a multiparty democracy in 1991. According to the European Commission, “It has seen economic growth sustained by services (especially tourism) and a marked improvement in standards of governance, both in terms of democracy, human rights, and fundamental freedoms on one hand, and in terms of economic governance on the other.” In 2007, the European Council approved a “special relationship” with the island nation. Closer relations were justified, it said, by the country’s cultural heritage, democratic reforms, good governance, and “natural vocation to serve as a bridge between Europe and the African and American continents, and thus as a transit point for goods and people moving between Europe and the latter.”The European Union (EU) has allocated €51 million to economic development and is cooperating with Cape Verde in its efforts to combat drug trafficking and illegal immigration.

Foreign assistance can work wonders when it’s carefully targeted and wisely spent. In 2005, Cape Verde was selected as one of 19 developing countries to share a US$6.9 billion pool of aid entrusted by the U.S. Congress to a new agency called the Millennium Challenge Corporation, or MCC. As the name suggests, the goal was to steer aid to poor countries that were committed to good governance, economic freedom, and investment in their citizens. Cape Verde was awarded US$110 million for a five-year parcel of projects to capture and conserve rainwater, upgrade agriculture, build the local roads and bridges that farming families need to access markets, schools and hospitals, help reform government bureaucracy, and strengthen microfinance institutions.    

Were is the biggest population of Cape Verdeans? Cape Verde, right? Wrong. In fact, there are as many Cape Verdeans—around 500,000—in New England as there are on all nine inhabited islands, which lie 300 miles west of Senegal, not to mention sizeable groups in Portugal, Angola, Brazil, and the European Union (EU). Despite its remote Atlantic location, small population, and limited resources, with more citizens and descendants abroad than at home, Cape Verde punches above its weight globally, not just in relations with Portuguese-speaking nations and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), but also in partnerships with the United States and EU. See - CV Diaspora
Cape Verdeans overseas represent more than just a presence. They also help maintain national finances, contributing 9 percent of GDP in remittances. Prime Minister José Maria Neves now aims to ensure that all its people are better aware of the nation’s potential, get involved in its development and become advocates for what it has to offer.      
                                                           
Read full text on pdf - Below: A Gateway To And From Africa

Full Text on PDF - Below:

Index

A Gateway To And From Africa 
CV Islands At The Center Of The World


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