By Tim Akano
“…In solitude, the mind gains strength and learns to lean upon itself. On the other side of the storm is the strength that comes from having navigated through it. Raise your sail and begin…”
– Laurence Sterne, the Novelist (1713-1768)
Life is unpredictable and you never know what is coming next. Don’t ever get too comfortable. Always be ready for change. https://lessonslearnedinlife.com/_
It’s called the brave new world.
When the wind of change blows, says the Chinese proverb, some people build walls while others build windmills.
What does our future hold in 2021?
What lies at the other side of the pandemic coin?
Is it more breakdown or a breakthrough?
What is the place of choice and wants in arriving at this decision?
What can we leverage in these crises to leapfrog, using the law of random opportunity?
We could not change 2020…
…neither can we change the future.
But, how best can we prepare for what awaits humanity in 2021?
How will the pandemic shape the coming year?
Who blinks first in the on-going clash of civilizations between the East and the West?
How will the current economic, technological, religious, and cultural revolutions pan out?
Will the November US Presidential election metamorphose into another pandemic with global ripple effects?
Is the traditional banking system entering its winter season against the backdrop of blockchain disruption and cryptocurrency?
Unarguably, uncertainty is an uncomfortable position, but certainty in itself, is an absurdity.
Certainty begets boredom, uncertainty and resilience live together. They co-inhabit and fuel the adrenalin of creativity and give birth to uncommon ingenuity.
But how does this affect Africa?
By any reckoning, Africa is the ‘’Ball’’ and the 54 African Presidents are the ‘’Ball Boys’’.
The two Football clubs (The Red Devil F.C & The Yellow Scorpion F.C.) that play in the world’s Champions league final are the same, year after year, likewise the players, spectators, the referee, and linesmen.
United Nations (UN) is the referee while IMF, World Bank, WTO, WHO are the linesmen.
The rules are 3
1. Kick Africa,
2. Keep kicking it hard and,
3. Use African Presidents and elites for the role of ‘’ball boys’’ who throw the ball back to the field of play anytime it gets out of play.
The Red Devil F.C. consists of the US (Captain/Striker: No.10), UK, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Netherlands, Belgium, Canada, and the goalkeeper, Russia. On the bench are: Sweden, Australia, Israel.
Whereas, the Yellow Scorpion F.C is made up of China (Captain/Striker: No.9), Japan, India, South Korea, Thailand, Pakistan, Turkey, Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia. The goalkeeper is Saudi Arabia. On the bench are Brazil, Iran, and Lebanon.
Throughout the slavery, colonization and neo-colonization era, Africa has been the ‘’ball’’.
So, so sad!
It is a great mystery that the ‘’ball’’ remains intact and still bouncing despite the ruthlessness of the French, the British, Belgian, Portuguese, Dutch, Arabs, Americans, and of recent, the Chinese (China in particular with 70% possession in this on-going live!) toward Africa.
What remains is for China to swallow the entire ball…maybe, it’s saner to say, take ownership of the “ball” but whatever you choose, the process seems to have begun.
Zambia will soon become the 24th Chinese Province as China prepares to take over the Zambia National Electricity company (ZESCO) in addition to the Zambia Broadcasting company (ZNBC), which it currently controls. On top of this, China enjoys enormous veto power on Zambia Police. The China Road and Belt Initiatives look like a veritable road to second slavery for Africans.
Most African countries have signed away their sovereignty and independence to China as collateral for the $145 billion they collectively borrowed from China under some dubious terms and conditions.
Aside Zambia, Kenya, Nigeria, Angola, Ethiopia are all heavily debt-trapped. One can safely conclude that technically speaking, China owns Africa.
As we speak, up to 60% of the mineral resources mining licenses in Africa are in the hands of the Chinese miners and they are also grabbing thousands of hectares of Africa’s arable land for keeps.
Where is China debt taking Africa to?
Are there no alternatives to finance Africa’s infrastructure deficit outside of China’s hot loan?
Should Africa be struggling to become one of the linesmen in WTO, when it is not going to change Africa position as the ball?
What are the unspoken of the trade and loan deals with China?
What is so irresistible about China’s loans that government officials would fight Parliament to have it approved?
At this juncture, Africa will definitely need another type of The USA 4 Africa musical concert that held on March 7th, 1985 where Michael Jackson, Lionel Richie and 44 other music stars sang: ‘’WE ARE THE WORLD, WE ARE THE CHILDREN’’…. that sold over 20 million copies and raised over $60 million to help poor African countries.
The level of poverty in Africa that moved Lionel Richie and his colleagues to tears in 1985 was a tip of the iceberg compared with what is happening in Africa today under the Chinese watch.
China 4 Africa musical concert is urgently needed. The objective of which is to wake up Africa from its slumber and draw global attention to the hopelessness of Africa situation.
Africa is no longer the world, but the ‘’ball’’.
Africans are no longer the children of the world but the ‘’ball boys of the world.
Therefore, you will permit me to re-write the lyrics like this:
We Are The Ball…
We are the Ball,
African elites are the Ball Boys,
We are the ones that China and France are kicking around
The way children kick cans on the street,
Who make China, India economy boom,
Who make French, American, British economy boom
So, let’s start crying aloud
For the world to hear
There’s a choice we’re making
We’re digging our own future graves
It’s true we’re making brighter days for China and France
While African leaders sell their continent for a penny
We are the Ball, African leaders are the Ball Boys…!!!_
Sadly enough, as economic crisis gets worse in the developed world, the looting of Africa through sundry means by the imperialist powers will only accelerate in 2021 and beyond.
Going forward, Africa should handover the development of those infrastructure that China is financing to African private business ventures for execution.
Africa’s secret power is the Africans in diaspora. With an investment of $50k each by three million Africans in diaspora, a sum of $150 billion can be raised to finance the 2063 Africa’s transformation agenda without mortgaging the future of the yet unborn generations.
De-globalization is on the way in 2021 as globalization is put on the reverse gear. According to the IMF, in 1990, Chinese economy accounted for just 2% of the global economy compared with the US 23%. As at July 2020, both the US and China account for 16% each of the global economy – America’s contraction is China’s expansion.
Yuan or the Greenback – You’ve got a decision to make!
The first implication of the current 16% apiece global market share between China and the US is that in a multi-polar economic world order, there will be less strict rule enforcement and constant volatility and instability- it will be a jungle where the fittest nations survive. Secondly, the world will witness currency clash and the rise of regionalization. Euro will clash with British Pound Sterling as US Dollar clash with Chinese Yuan.
On the 22nd of July 2020, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) released a guideline stating that national banks can now hold cryptocurrency and provide safekeeping services for customers.
Similarly, on July 28th, J.P. Morgan Chase in the US approved that Bitcoin (BTC) will now be accepted as a store of value of assets by the bank. Two months ago, China launched Yuan cryptocurrency that has cut off Chinese banks and US dollar from the payments loop of the 1.4 billion Chinese market.
The system is currently being experimented in 4 of the 23 Chinese provinces with millions of Chinese subscribers. It will become fully operational country-wide in 2022 and will be backed up with the 20,000 tons of gold reserve in China vault and 11 million Bitcoin held by the Chinese miners which is equivalent to 50% of the available Bitcoin worldwide.
Where is the financial system headed in 2021?
My prediction for 2021 is that US Dollar will suffer some irreversible loss to the Yuan crypto currency. And by 2025, the year of ‘Made-in-China’, the American Dollars would have gone the way of its predecessor: the British Pound Sterling!
In this circumstance, Africa needs to launch its own pan-Africa currency to power the Africa Free Trade Continental Trade Agreement (AfCTA) by 2021, for Africa not to be a slave again in the emerging digital currency regime.
It’s no longer news that digital currency is here to stay. But are you ready?
The organizers of Event 201 that took place on the 18th of October 2019 in New York saw tomorrow with 100% accuracy regarding the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak and the lockdown that followed. Event 201 was run by the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security in partnership with the World Economic Forum and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Given the perfect accuracy of what happened afterwards, it is safe to conclude that:
1. It is either the likes of Bill Gates and founder of WEF, Professor Klaus Schwab were part of the examiners that set the C-19 pandemic examinations papers or;
2. They were privileged students who saw the questions before the examination day or;
3. They are simply wizards from another planet.
Two months after their New York meeting, the pandemic broke out exactly the way they had earlier predicted in their ‘’tabletop exercise’’ that simulated a series of dramatic, scenario-based pandemic.
The next World Economic Forum (WEF) taking place in Switzerland in January 21st 2021 is the barometer of the direction of the world economy in 2021 and beyond.
Suffice to submit that 2020/2021 are ‘transition years’ when all problems will come to a head!
Economic contraction will continue in 2021. For instance. in the outgoing year as at July 31st, France economy shrank by 14%, Spain 19%, Germany 10%, Italy 15% and the biggest loser is the US whose GDP dropped by 32.9%. For the United States, this is the deepest contraction since 1947 when government began keeping records. No less than 54 million out of the total 152 million workers in America had filed for unemployment benefits, while 30 million Americans claimed they don’t have food to eat. Also, 15% of all restaurants in the US are shutting down according to National Restaurants Association.
1. The broken global supply chain will lead to acute food shortages in 2021.
2. There will be more instability, civil unrest and conflict at the international stage.
3. According to IMF, “after economic reset, a new One World economic system will happen which will gradually graduate into a global government…”
4. The world is reverting to factory reset in 2021 where medical tyranny, immunity passports, and regional digital currency will go live and become mainstream as trade and personal privacy become history.
5. Another important variable in 2021 is the deployment of Artificial Intelligence (Ai). Ai will democratize access to services, information and convenience. It will be used more by the Financial Institutions, Retail, Travels and Hospitality and Health services to automate customer service agents and diagnostic treatment system. IDC forecasts that Ai investment will hit $98 billion between 2021 and 2023. Ai will produce new set of millionaires, even though some ‘’eggs will have to be broken to make the omelette’.
6. Depending on what happens in America during and after the November presidential election, the possibility of a total collapse of the world economy is greater than 50%. If it happens, there will certainly be stagflation, prices of necessities will go through the roof, joblessness will skyrocket.
Unfortunately, we can’t change the future, but we can prepare for it.
A great unravelling of the world has begun. To survive the severe economic meltdown that lies ahead of humanity in 2021 will require a ‘’bullet-proof vest’’.
_Before economic sunshine, more downpours are on the horizons…_
Those who should know said it might take the world up to the Q1, 2022 for the world economy to be back at where it was in December 31st 2019 before the pandemic!
The Boys Scout motto is the answer:
How should you prepare?
First, be more attentive to your environment. Environment remains your best friend! The environment will speak to you and show you the ‘’new cracks’’ on the wall, the line of least resistance from where you can re-enter the new world.
Second, a chain is no stronger than its weakest link. Therefore, you need to rejig your network with a view to leveraging the wisdom of a more resilient team.
Three, since the global supply chain is broken, what will work for survival is a decentralized economy. Communities will have to come together to build a self-reliant ecosystem with less dependence on the mainstream economy.
In one word….
Plan to grow some of your food requirements, if you can, or be part of a community that will guarantee that.
Since education is now free, this should be optimally leveraged for individual’s professional and career re-invention.
Four, the Novelist, Laurence Sterne is right: “in solitude, the mind gains strength and learns to lean upon itself.” The lockdown period is to purify, renew and strengthen our spirit.
Five and finally, what counts is not what you look at presently, but what you see on the horizons.
It is not what you look at that matters, (I.e. what is) it is what you see!
Imagination supersedes knowledge.
Welcome to the brave new world.
The chances are nine to ten that 2021 will be another transition year. Therefore, be prepared by thinking perpendicularly and expanding your perspective.
You are anxious and concerned about the future?
Interesting times are coming. Those times will demand that you become fresh in your thinking, be open-minded and willing to adapt.
These are coping kits, in managing nations, businesses, families and for personal growth, for what’s coming next!
Are you still anxious? I say…
*Tim Akano, THISDAY Life Lessons Advisor, can be reached at [email protected] *please tag the subject of your email: What’s Coming Next?