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Southward Bound

Over the last few months, you may have seen a few changes around these pages. While our focus has always been (and will always be) on Africa, you probably spotted the odd Southeast Asian or Middle Eastern, or Latin American story cropping up.

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Q&A: Africa’s Role in China’s Global Military Expansion – Defense Expert Unpacks a Thorny Issue

The head of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, Admiral John Aquilino, on Tuesday added to the growing alarm in Washington DC defense circles about the global reach of China’s military. 

Speaking in front of the House Appropriations defense subcommittee, Aquilino said China is building capacity to seize Taiwan, and: “The PRC also seeks to establish a network of overseas military installations that would extend its reach, allowing support for an increasingly ...

Citing National Security, Kenya (Again) Refuses to Release SGR Contracts With China

Kenya's transportation minister Joseph Njoroge reaffirmed the government's longstanding refusal to make public the $3.9 billion contract with the state-owned China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) to build the Standard Gauge Railway. Njoroge's cited a host of reasons for rejecting the ...

Global Times Isn’t Happy With the FT’s Report on Chinese Lending in Africa

This week's Financial Times story by Africa Editor David Pilling and Greater China Correspondent Kathrin Hille on the slowdown in Chinese infrastructure lending in Africa provoked a largely favorable response among international audiences but almost no reaction from Chinese stakeholders... until today.

African Governments Need to Prepare For a New Era of Chinese Lending That Will be Smaller and More Targeted, Says Analyst

The recent pullback in Chinese lending for African infrastructure development makes sense, given debt sustainability problems in more than a third of the countries across the continent, explained Damilola Akinbami, the Lagos-based head of research at Financial Derivatives Company in an interview on the ...

It’s Difficult to Overstate Just How Much the “Debt Trap” Accusation Irks Chinese Officials

Wu Peng, China's top diplomat for sub-Saharan Africa, on Wednesday posted a tweet that featured a week-old video of Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari defending his decision to borrow from China. Wu didn't include any other reference in ...

Chinese, Nigerian Security Officials Meet to Discuss How to Better Protect Chinese Expats in the Country

High-level Chinese and Nigerian security officials met on Monday in Abuja to discuss how to reduce crime and violence against Chinese nationals residing in Nigeria. Yin Guohai from China's powerful Ministry of Public Security along with Ambassador Cui Jianchun held talks ...

Small-scale Miners in Northeastern DR Congo Protest Against Chinese Mining Companies’ Use of Heavy Machinery

Protests erupted this week in the far northeastern Congolese province of Haut-Uélé where small-scale miners rallied against the growing presence of Chinese mining companies in the region. The marchers, mostly young men, are upset about how Chinese mining companies are using large ...

Hunan Province Approves a Raft of New Measures Aimed at Boosting Trade With Africa

Provincial lawmakers in the southern Chinese province of Hunan approved a set of new measures this week that are designed to boost the province's already sizable trade with Africa.  Members of the Standing Committee of the Thirteenth People's ...