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China and the Future of Energy in Africa

China's played a pivotal role in financing a sizable portion of African energy infrastructure in recent years. But now amid the economic crisis brought on by COVID-19 and a sharp downturn in Chinese support for energy projects in Africa and elsewhere ...

COVID-19 Crisis Sparks New Drive in Africa to Reduce Dependency on Chinese Imports and Boost Local Manufacturing

The disruption to global trade due to the COVID-19 outbreak and high levels of dependency on imported Chinese goods are prompting policymakers in a growing number of African countries to develop new initiatives that aim to boost local manufacturing. Uganda Wants ...

See What Happens When You Start to Talk Openly and Honestly About Chinese Debt?

Last week the Nigerian Debt Management Office (DMO) published a refreshingly simple and transparent summary of the country's borrowing from China that included detailed information on how much the country owes, the terms and what the money's being used for. This is not something we've ...

“At Long Last, We Now Know How Much Poor Country Governments Owe China”

The team at the China-Africa Research Initiative at Johns Hopkins University in Washington, D.C, has been poring through the treasure trove of information contained in the World Bank's newly released International Debt Statistics database. "For decades, researchers have ...

Africa Practice: Africa is Not Facing a Debt Crisis but Some African Countries Certainly Are

The London-based consultancy Africa Practice published a new infographic on Twitter that highlights the wide disparities between different countries' debt-to-GDP ratio across the continent. 

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Cobalt Clarifies Everything

We’re at one of those moments when everyone suddenly remembers that Africa exists. Right through the pandemic, the debt crisis, and climate talks, the continent and its needs were seemingly invisible.

But nothing sharpens the eye like an upcoming FOCAC summit. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s African visit was marked by determination to avoid the Trump administration’s almost Freudian compulsion to blurt out ‘China!’ when talking about African issues. Instead, Blinken ...

South Africa FM: Debt is the Hippo Eating the Next Generation’s Inheritance

South African Finance Minister Tito Mboweni issued a dire warning to the parliament on Wednesday about the country's debt crisis. With South Africa's debt-to-GDP levels breaking new records this year and forecast to grow to 82% in the next few months, Minister Mboweni compared the debt ...

Mike Pompeo Accuses China of Issuing “Empty Promises and Misleading Propaganda” in Africa

The United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo issued a blistering critique of China's COVID-19 diplomacy in Africa. In a press statement issued on Wednesday, Secretary Pompeo denounced Chinese Xi Jinping for failing to provide "real transparency and accountability for the PRC’s role in ...