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Why African Countries in Debt to China Should Pay Close Attention to What’s Happening in Laos

A Chinese state-owned company will take control of the power grid in Laos, one of Asia's poorest countries, in a deal to stave off default of its multi-billion-dollar debts to China. The two sides reached an agreement last week for Electricite du ...

There Are NO Plans for China to Build a New Military Base in Kenya

Seemingly feeding off one another, Kenyan media outlets whipped themselves into a flurry over a rumour that China plans to build a new military base in the country. These stories were predicated on the following statement in the 

NGO Takes Zim Government to Court to Stop Chinese Mining Operations in the Hwange National Park

The Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association announced that it will take legal action to stop Chinese mining operations in the Hwange National Park. Last week, the Zhongxin Mining Group Tongmao Coal Company began mining in two coal concessions that were allocated ...

U.S., Europe Becoming Increasingly Worried Over China’s Dominance of the World’s Cobalt Supply Chain

With ties between China and the U.S. and Europe becoming increasingly strained, there's growing concern in Washington, Brussels, and other European capitals about China's dominance over the supply for strategically vital metals and minerals, especially cobalt. Cobalt is widely used in ...

Pandemic? Pfffff! Chinese Phone Giant Transsion Still Generating Huge 2020 Profits

Transsion, the Shenzhen-based African mobile phone giant, posted surging revenue and profits for the first half of 2020. The ongoing pandemic doesn't appear to have dented demand for its phones and services. Profits for the first six months of the year jumped 33.4% compared to the ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Glimpses of Future China-Africa Engagement

For a while, I’ve been wondering about Chinese peacekeeping in Africa. Specifically, I was wondering where it went as a topic of discussion. A few years ago, every second China-Africa seminar seemed to focus on peacekeeping. Then attention moved to debt, and I assumed that Beijing was cooling on peacekeeping, a trend exacerbated by the pandemic.

Welp, it turns out I was very wrong. Peacekeeping is back, and it’s even ...

Facing the Prospect of Getting Booted Out of the U.S., TikTok Looks to Expand in Africa

The Chinese-owned short-form video platform TikTok appears to be ramping up its staffing in Africa as it faces an uncertain future in the United States.  The company recently posted an ad on LinkedIn to recruit an Influencer Manager ...

China Now the Top Destination for African Students, Says New Report

China is surging ahead of France, the United States and the United Kingdom to become the top destination for African students seeking to study abroad, according to new data from the Beijing-based consultancy Development Reimagined (DR). While Europe as ...

Join a Virtual “Open Day” Tour of Egypt’s New Administrative Capital Hosted by Chinese Construction Company’s Odd Mascot

China State Construction Engineering Corporation (CSCEC) held a virtual "Open Day" (kind of like an open house) for everyone to see how the construction of the new Egyptian administrative capital is coming along. It's an interesting video just ...

Is Debt-for-Equity Chinese for “Debt Trap?”

Tucked away in a remote corner of Southeast Asia, an important experiment is now underway that could have profound implications for how China manages its vast loan portfolio in Africa and in other developing regions. Last week, Laos's state-owned electric power ...

Chinese Energy Engagement in Africa

China plays an indispensable role in Africa's burgeoning energy market as a financier and contractor for much of the new electrical capacity across the continent. China's building large new coal plants in Zimbabwe, solar power facilities in Kenya and Zambia and ...