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The Other Side of Agency

Last week I ran into a friend who’s a media studies scholar. We caught up about our work – she’s busy with a paper about the media representation of face masks. What am I working on? A paper on China’s provision of coal-powered electricity in Africa. Oh, ...

China’a Confusing, Contradictory Environmental Agenda

While scrolling today I came across this great piece by the China expert and former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, laying out the wider implications of China's much-discussed commitment to achieving carbon neutrality by 2060. Rudd points out that ...

Why the Sengwa Coal Plant in Zimbabwe Will Probably be China’s Last Mega Deal in Africa For a Very Long Time

China and Zimbabwe are moving forward with a massive new $3 billion coal power plant in the northern city of Sengwa. When complete, the new plant will generate 2800 megawatts of power and could singlehandedly erase the power deficit that's crippling the country.

China to Finance and Build a Massive New Coal Power Plant in Zimbabwe

The Zimbabwean government announced last month that construction of the new $3 billion Sengwa coal power plant will proceed after years of negotiation. The new 2,800 megawatt plant will be a joint effort between ...

Podcast Transcript: Kenya Tribunal Blocks Chinese-Financed Coal Power Plant

Eric: Hello, and welcome to another edition of China in Africa podcast. I'm Eric Olander and as always, I'm joined by Cobus van Staden, a senior China-Africa researcher at the South African Institute of International Affairs in Johannesburg, ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Sanctions and Anti-Sanctions

For those tracking the development (and high-level normalization) of ‘the new cold war,’ this week has been a doozy. U.S. President Joe Biden departed for the G7 summit in Cornwall with a rare bipartisan win in his pocket. His U.S. Innovation and Competition Act, a $250 billion bill aimed at countering Chinese competition in a number of hi-tech areas like semiconductors and robotics, passed with a 68-32 majority. Some predict that it could ...

Kenya Tribunal Blocks Chinese-Financed Coal Power Plant

Kenya's National Environmental Tribunal ruled this week that the government and its industry-allies failed to submit a proper environmental impact assessment to build a coal power on Lamu island. The $2 billion plant, with more than half of the financing coming from the Industrial ...