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DOUBLE EPISODE: Andy Mok Reflects on FOCAC Plus a Discussion About Bad China-Africa Journalism

With the end of the year fast approaching and time running out to get everything into the last remaining shows of the season, we're bringing you a special double episode this week. First, join us ...

Nigeria’s Debt Crossed the $90 Billion Threshold… But Not Because of Chinese Loans

Nigeria's total debt, both external and domestic, edged up by 4% to $92.6 billion as of the end of September according to the latest data from the Debt Management Office (DMO).  The DMO said the increase was due largely ...

Nigeria’s Controversial Transport Minister Will Likely Run For President Touting the Success of New Chinese-Built Railways

Nigeria's high-profile and rather controversial transportation minister Rotimi Amaechi is under mounting pressure from political allies to run for president in the upcoming election scheduled for 2023. And if he does run, there are indications he's going to put ...

The U.S. and China Are Squabbling Over a Chinese-Financed Railway. This Time It’s in Vietnam, Not Kenya

U.S. and Chinese state-backed media outlets are once again exchanging fire over a Chinese-backed railway project in the Global South... but this time it's not the Standard Gauge Railway in Kenya, instead, it's Hanoi's brand new subway in Vietnam that is at the center of yet another ...

The New U.S. Strategy for the Indo-Pacific Region Sounds a Lot Like Washington’s New Approach to Africa

Secretary of State Antony Blinken doesn't want developing countries to feel they have to choose between the U.S. and China. He also wants to discourage these countries from building costly low-quality infrastructure and vowed that Washington will now be more committed to their region. ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

China’s African Debt Experiment

The Financial Times today published a deep dive into the issue of Chinese lending to African countries and what struck me was how it crystallizes some of the underlying issues that aren’t necessarily made clear in the debt debate.

In the first place, it shows that Africa’s need for financing far outstrips both the available financing options and the continent’s current ability to repay them. The Calvinist logic that underlies much of ...

BRI Scholar Reflects on U.S.-China Competition For Influence in ASEAN and the Critical Role of Railways

The new $6 billion, 1,000-kilometer China-Laos railway that opened a couple of weeks ago is widely seen as the most visible evidence of Beijing's push to expand its presence in Southeast Asia. The railway's debut came just before U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited the region ...

The ‘China Building a Military Base in Equatorial Guinea’ Narrative is Fast Becoming Normalized… No Evidence Needed

The unsubstantiated claim by the U.S. military that China is considering Equatorial Guinea as the location of its next military base in Africa is widely gaining traction among U.S. and European journalists, scholars, and analysts despite the fact that there is still no evidence to verify the ...

South African Foreign Policy Too Much of a “Mess” For China to Exert Significant Influence Analyst Tells Sky News Australia

An interesting exchange took place on a recent episode of the Global Focus program on Sky News Australia where host Chris Pyne wanted to know from fellow Australian author and Africa scholar Jamie Miller whether China is exerting undue economic and political influence in South Africa. 

What Does ‘African Agency’ Actually Look Like? We’ll See…

The moral panic in Uganda about a possible Chinese seizure of the Entebbe airport as a result of a loan default is a rare example of a trend that’s both trivial and serious. In the former sense, the panic is based on misreporting. The loan is still ...