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New China-Africa Trade Data Shows Mixed Results (And That’s Really Good News, All Things Considered)

A number of countries across Africa this week are reporting trade figures for the first half of the year and they're surprisingly mixed given the enormous disruption brought on by the COVID-19 outbreak. In some cases, a sharp fall in Chinese ...

How COVID-19 is Messing Up Lucrative Africa-Asia Trade Routes

SABC Correspondent Richard Kimber reports from Hong Kong's main cargo terminal on how new quarantine regulations for container vessels is further slowing African trade with China, and Asia as a whole. ...

Chinese Embassy Responds to Kenyan Health Cabinet Secretary’s PPE Ban

A spokeswoman for the Chinese embassy in Nairobi rejected assertions by Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe that Chinese-made masks and other PPE are sub-standard. “All supplies donated by the Chinese government to Kenya have gone through strict quality testing and get a valid certification,” said embassy ...

The UN Economic Commission for Africa Makes Rare Public Appeal to China on Debt Relief

High-level representatives from the African Union (AU) Commission, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) as well as officials from China and various African countries met on Tuesday to discuss the "fight against the pandemic in Africa." ...

The Complicated Geopolitics Behind the G20’s Debt Suspension Program

Africa economist Mark Bohlund made an interesting observation yesterday following the news that both Djibouti and Zambia had been approved by the G20 to take part in the Debt Service Suspension Initiative. The fact that both countries owe little to nothing to one of China's ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

The Different Readings of FOCAC

One of the intriguing results of last week’s FOCAC meeting has been a narrative pushed by key English-language publications that it represents a reduction in Chinese engagement with the continent. Bloomberg set the tone in its initial report which counted the sums mentioned in President Xi Jinping’s speech and came to $40 billion. Comparing it to the $60 billion funding targets of 2015 and 2018, it concluded that the summit represented a pullback from ...

No Evidence, No Problem: Nigerian Media’s Love Affair With the Chinese “Debt Trap” Narrative

Even though scholars from around the world have debunked the charge and there's no evidence to support it, the Chinese debt trap meme is alive and well in some of Nigeria's leading newspapers. The ongoing Chinese loan controversy in Nigeria has ...

Nigeria’s Debt Management Office Tries (Again) to Set the Record Straight About Chinese Loans

For a second time, the Nigerian Debt Management Office (DMO) published easy to understand infographics that attempt to dispel the downright inaccurate information circulating in the press and on social media about the country's loans from China. The DMO ...

The Chinese “Western Media Conspiracy”

When the news broke on Sunday that Kenyan Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe announced that he had decided to ban the import of Chinese-made PPE due to quality concerns, the reaction on Chinese social media was entirely predictable. Right off the bat ...

You Can Actually See Chinese Soft Power Draining Away in Nigeria

China's apparent unwillingness to engage Nigerian civil society in a discussion over the ongoing loan controversy is eroding what's left of Beijing's credibility in the media, politics and among the country's enormous young, online population that gets most of its news from social media. ...

W. Gyude Moore: China or the West? Who Should be Africa’s “Partner of Choice?”

Over the past couple of weeks, W. Gyude Moore, a senior policy fellow at the Center for Global Development in Washington, D.C., has been writing thoughtful essays on Twitter where he reflects on Africa's current positioning wedged between China and the proverbial "west."