Editorial: The Chadian experiment

The Chadian experiment is faltering. Landlocked, poor, and fractiously governed, Chad was supposed to refute the paradox economists call “the resource curse.” It was supposed to show that oil development, subject to proper control, can relieve chronic poverty. It might yet do so. But the challenge grows.The experiment began well enough. With help from the World Bank, the 670-mile pipeline that carries crude from Doba basin fields of southern Chad across Cameroon to the port of Kribi started up in 2003. The next year, Chad’s gross domestic product grew 31%. According to resource-curse theory, much of the wealth should have disappeared through corruption. But the World Ban...

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