Unexpectedly Intriguing!
May 27, 2010

Dakar's African Renaissance Monument Other than weapons, that is!

The statue is the African Renaissance Monument in Dakar, Senegal. The 49 meter (160 feet) tall bronze statue was constructed by North Korea's Mansudae Art Studio to commemorate the former French colony' 50th year of independence. The statue was constructed atop a 100 meter (328 feet) tall hill.

Like the Statue of Liberty in the United States, tourists can go up to the top (inside the man's head) and view the surroundings.

The statue was built for an approximate cost of $29 million U.S. dollars. With an estimated 2009 GDP of $ 22,380,000,000 (adjusted for Purchasing Power Parity), the cost of the statue represents 0.13% of Senegal's total annual economic output. With its 2009 GDP estimated to be $ 40,000,000,000, the cost of the statue also represents 0.07% of North Korea's economic output.

Senegal's GDP per capita is just $1,600, while North Korea's GDP per capita is estimated to be $1,900. That ranks North Korea at 188 out of 227 nations, while placing Senegal just a bit behind in the 195th position.

In 2009, the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) a U.S. government agency, agreed to provide $540 million to support infrastructure improvements within Senegal, such as roads and irrigation projects, over a period of five years. The $29 million North Korean-built statue, while not directly funded through the MCC grant, represents 5.3% of that total planned contribution.

Image Credit: Core 77

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