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It’s Not All Gloomy

The last few weeks have been marked by a pervasive gloominess about Africa's future.  As Zambia was defaulting on its Eurobond debt, the G20 was praising itself effusively for coming up with a debt response unlikely ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

It’s Not All Gloomy

The last few weeks have been marked by a pervasive gloominess about Africa’s future. 

As Zambia was defaulting on its Eurobond debt, the G20 was praising itself effusively for coming up with a debt response unlikely to help anyone. Meanwhile, the depressing talking points kept coming: a lost decade, 25 years of growth down the drain, millions pushed back into extreme poverty. 

These are all realities. However, they might not show the entire ...

With Chinese Loans Coming Due, Ethiopia Moves Forward With Ethio Telecom Privatization Plan

The Ethiopian government is moving forward with plans to sell off a 45% stake of the state-owned Ethio Telecom along with two more telecom licenses even though this may not be the best time to do that given the weak economy and the escalating conflict in the ...

China’s Role in East Africa’s Technology Stack

The technology stack, either in a company or a country, is comprised of the different technology layers that together form a digital communications ecosystem. And in places like East Africa, Chinese technology is indispensable up and down the stack -- everything ...

Wait. Is 11.11 is Actually a Thing in Zambia? Really?

Today is the most important day on the calendar for hundreds of millions of Chinese consumers, who are expected to buy an astonishing $45 billion worth of stuff in just 24 hours. Yes, that almost $2 billion AN HOUR. While Singles Day (named for being the anti-Valentine's ...

What’s Next For Jack Ma’s Philanthropy in Africa Now That He’s in Real Trouble Back Home?

Jack Ma, the founder and former CEO of Alibaba, is in trouble with the government at home. Big trouble. Last week, Chinese regulators pulled the plug at the very last minute on Alibaba's blockbuster $34 billion IPO of its financial unit Ant Group after Ma ...

China’s Cryptocurrency Now Has a Foothold in Places Like Africa With the Introduction of Huawei’s Latest Phone

Huawei unveiled its new Mate 40 smartphone on Friday that for the first time comes preinstalled with a built-in e-wallet that uses China's digital yuan or cryptocurrency. Although the Mate 40 will go on sale in most of Africa's ...

China Dominates Almost Every Layer of East Africa’s Mobile Technology Sector

Chinese technology permeates nearly every level of the East African mobile technology stack with the notable exception of operating systems that are still dominated by Google and Apple, according to a post by Kenya-based technology analyst Michael Kimani. While Kimani focused his analysis on ...

Worrying About Huawei in Africa Misses the Bigger Issue

Say what you want about the marginally effective U.S. campaign against Huawei, they do deserve some credit for keeping the issue of network security at the forefront of the wider discussion about next-generation mobile telecommunications. They're absolutely right to be worried ...

Inspired by China’s Example, Nigeria’s Information Minister Wants to Regulate Social Media

Nigeria's Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, sparked widespread outrage on Tuesday when he called for the government to step in and begin to censor online content. "If we don’t regulate social media, it will destroy us," he told a House committee. "The ...

Nigeria’s Not the Only African Country Seeking to Impose Chinese-Style Restrictions on Internet Activity

The Chinese-inspired model of government control over digital communications and internet activity is becoming increasingly popular in a number of African countries. While no African country goes to the lengths that China does in regulating online behavior, states like Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Uganda, and Ethiopia are definitely employing ...

Egypt is the Newest Front in the U.S.-China Battle Over Huawei and Chinese Tech in Africa

The United States brought its campaign against Huawei to Egypt as part of a global effort to promote Washington's new "Clean Network" initiative that aims to build an alternative to China's dominance in the international telecom networking market. ...
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