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Welcome to the New Era of China-Africa Relations

China's apparent decision to bail on financing the $2.8 billion AKK pipeline in Nigeria is the latest evidence that Beijing's strategy to engage the continent has changed, a lot. This pipeline is now the third major project in Nigeria ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Reading the Smoke

As things slowly settle down in South Africa after the last ruinous week, the debates about who’s really to blame are catching fire. It’s now being called an insurrection attempt, and President Ramaphosa has referred to those responsible for fueling the protests as ‘enemies of democracy.’ One of the problems underlying the current crisis is that he’s both right and wrong. South Africa is indeed, as Ramaphosa called it, a ‘hard-fought-for democracy.’ ...

Tanzania Resumes Talks With China Over the Bagamoyo Port Deal. But Is It Too Late?

Tanzanian President Samia Hassan surprised a lot of people last month when she announced that talks with China had resumed over the controversial Bagamoyo port deal. This is the deal that President Hassan's predecessor, the late John Magufuli, famously halted back ...

When It Comes to China, Africa and Central Asia Actually Have Quite a Bit in Common

It's not obvious, but when it comes to managing ties with China, countries in Central Asia and Africa have a lot more in common with one another than many would first assume.  Both are among ...

The Diplomat’s Shannon Tiezzi on China and the Global South

While China's ties with Europe, the U.S., Japan, and other wealthy northern countries steadily worsen, Beijing is leaning harder on its relations with states in the Global South. The importance of those ties was on full display over the past week ...

DRC Wants to Renegotiate Chinese Mining Deals. It Won’t Be Easy.

DR Congo President Félix Tshisekedi last month traveled to the country's mining heartland in Upper Katanga to personally tell everyone that he's had enough of business as usual and that he plans to renegotiate unfair foreign mining contracts. While he didn't ...

An Update on Chinese Lending in Africa (It’s Not Good News)

This week's launch of the new Lagos to Ibadan Standard Gauge Railway may be the last time for a long while that a big multibillion dollars infrastructure project like this is built in Africa using Chinese loans. Chinese development ...

Chinese Entertainment is Finding New Audiences in Africa

Jackie Chan and Bruce Lee kung fu movies have long been popular in Africa. Now, however, Chinese entertainment content is expanding beyond martial arts to include sports and even soap operas. Chinese television dramas are ...

Chinese Cyber Sovereignty & Nigeria’s #Twitterban

The Nigerian government justified the banning of Twitter on the basis of protecting the country's national interest, security, and sovereignty. Although the move was done for purely domestic political reasons, the government's defense is strikingly similar to the language that China ...

Why Huawei’s Much Ridiculed New OS Could Still Have a Big Impact in Africa

Huawei officially launched HarmonyOS this week, its new mobile operating system. The company was forced to build its own in-house OS after the Trump administration banned it from accessing key U.S. technologies including Alphabet's Android. ...

China Moves Ahead With Vaccine Distribution While COVAX, U.S. Efforts Falter

By now, COVAX, the global vaccine alliance should have shipped almost a quarter of a billion doses to the world's poorest countries. That hasn't happened. In fact, the alliance has distributed just 72 million jabs, a tiny fraction of what's needed. ...

Uganda Wants to Make It Big in China’s Booming Coffee Market

Uganda, like many African countries, suffers from an enormous trade deficit with China. Last year, according to UN figures, Uganda exported just $40 million worth of goods to China but imported more than $1.3 billion in return. The government in Kampala ...
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