Despite their political independence, most countries of the so-called Third World still find themselves playing the economic role allotted to them by the former colonial powers, as suppliers of raw material. Gabon, for instance, is not in a position to exploit its own natural resources and is forced to export them to France. This is a real drain on the country. The investment made by a French timber company, for example, does not benefit Gabon in any way. The film analyses how underdevelopment is encouraged and how growth rates in the industrial nations are directly connected to exploitation of the Third World and its consequent impoverishment.
When the film was shown, the West German timber lobby was up in arms. “They made our lives hell”, Troeller recalled: “The television board of governors had to convene. The then Minister for Economic Development, Mr. Egon Bahr, criticized the film publicly, but at the same time ordered 30 prints for his department “.
a film by Gordian Troeller and Marie-Claude Deffarge
in cooperation with François Partant
original title: Verarmungshilfe
camera: Gordian Troeller
sound: Carlos de los Llanos
editor: Ingeburg Forth
This film only exists in a German and in a French version.