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A Pair of Chinese Provinces Move to Boost Ties With Kenya, Rwanda

One of the big misperceptions about China’s economic engagement in Africa is that the central government in Beijing and its state-owned enterprises are the only Chinese actors on the continent. A pair of announcements this week highlight the large and growing role that Chinese provinces play in the economic relationship between the two regions.

  • ZHEJIANG PROVINCE: Municipal authorities from the Rwandan capital Kigali signed an urban development deal with counterparts from the port city of Yiwu in Zhejiang. Both Yiwu and Zhejiang are already very active in Rwanda thanks to Alibaba whose HQ is located in the provincial capital Hangzhou. Yiwu is also home to one of China’s largest African expatriate communities. (JOURNAL DU CAMEROUN)
  • SHANDONG PROVINCE: 50 exhibitors from China’s northern Shandong province will attend the upcoming Shandong Export Exhibition in Nairobi from November 26-28. Shandong is a Chinese manufacturing hub so naturally Kenyan investment promotion officials are eager to try and lure some of that production to East Africa. Due to COVID-19, the expo will take place both online and in person. (XINHUA)

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