This week I would like to focus on the DCDC Global Strategic Trends Programme and their analysis concerning Tunisia and North Africa as a whole for the period of 2007-2036. Strategic Trends is “an independent view of the future produced by the Development Concepts and Doctrine Centre (DCDC), a Directorate General within the UK’s Ministry of Defense (MOD).
Concerning North Africa the report states that “the Middle East and to a marginally lesser extent North Africa will remain highly unstable with, between them, massive population growth of 25% by 2010 and 50% by 2020 and poor prospects for employment and diversification from its dependence on a single sector; oil production” To a certain extent Tunisians have been blessed not to have so much oil and thus have avoided “the curse of oil”.
The oil curse exists mainly because money flows directly from Big Oil Companies to the Powerful & Elite, and thus governments have no incentive to develop non-oil sources which creates an environment where in-as a respected economist puts it- “the ruled (but untaxed) have little incentive to hold their rulers accountable” (The Economist, 2005)
Back to the report…
The report goes on to say that “the expectations of growing numbers of young people, many of whom will be confronted by the prospect of endemic unemployment, poor infrastructure and economic stagnation, are unlikely to be met. Their resentment in the face of unrepresentative regimes will find outlets in political militancy…”
We have been first hand witnesses to not only the resentment but also the various outlets which culminated in the Tunisian Revolution. Today more than ever businesses have to seriously think about the way they view Risk Management. According to security wizard George L. Head: “Risk management is the process of planning, organizing, directing, and controlling resources to achieve given objectives when surprisingly good or bad events are possible.”
As we witnessed during January’s revolution, many businesses both local and off shore where not prepared and it was evident that they invested very little in their Risk Management Plan. It is safe to say that now is the time to review one’s plan and learn from the past.
The DCDC Global Strategic Trends Programme
The Economist. (2005). The curse of oil: The paradox of plenty. Retrieved from http://www.economist.com/node/5323394