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Burkina Faso Launches New Huawei-Powered Smart City Initiative Using Loan From the China Exim Bank

The Burkina Faso government announced an ambitious new plan last week to build a 650-kilometer fiber-optic network that will connect all of the country's major cities to a new Huawei-powered Smart City platform.  Sensitive to the perception that the ...

The Haval Jolion Highlights The Major Inroads Chinese Cars Are Making in the African Auto Market

The popular South African auto review site cars.co.za just couldn't be more effusive about Great Wall Motors' new Haval Jolion SUV. "Should you buy the Jolion," the online review asked rhetorically, "you’d be silly not to." But the ...

Nigeria’s Twitter Ban & China’s Cyber Cultural Products

June’s been an eventful month for China, Africa, and the internet. On June 5th, Nigeria’s government suspended the use of Twitter in the country, indefinitely. The next day, the Foundation for Investigative Journalism reported that the Nigerian government had also reached out to the Cyberspace Administration ...

Nigerian House Representative Endorses Chinese-Style Social Media Regulation

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari is getting support from his ruling party allies in the House of Representatives to further the crackdown on social media and introduce even stricter "Chinese-style" regulations. "In China, social media is being regulated and such a thing ...

The Powerful Symbolism of The Huawei-Built Data Center Deal in Senegal

U.S. and French media were surprisingly quiet about yesterday's inauguration of a new national data center that was built with Chinese financing and equipped by Huawei. The new facility, located in Diamniadio outside of the capital Dakar, marks an important milestone in Africa. This is the first time ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Chinese Companies’ “Eat Bitter” Management Style Just Doesn’t Work in Africa

Forget debt traps, Huawei ‘back-doors’ and vaccine diplomacy. They might be the disputes that define our current polarized moment. But I’m willing to bet they won’t have the staying power of the one – the original – dispute that has haunted Chinese engagement with Africa since the late 1990s: labor.

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Senegal Launches Digital Sovereignty Initiative With New Chinese-Backed Data Center

Senegal is following China's lead in pursuing a new "digital sovereignty" initiative that will require all government data and digital platforms on foreign servers to be stored in a new national data center. "We have to rapidly repatriate all national data hosted out of the country,” 

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 ...

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 ...

Foreign Minister Geoffrey Onyeama Defends Twitter Ban, Denies Knowledge of Talks With China to Build Firewall

Nigerian Foreign Minister Geoffrey Onyeama spoke out in defense of the government's decision last week to ban Twitter, claiming the move was intended to protect the country's sovereignty and national security. The Foreign Minister made the remarks during a press conference that followed closed-door ...

Report: Asian, African Countries Block Access to Social Media More Than Any Other Regions

Nigeria's decision to ban Twitter last week is just the latest example of how access to social media platforms in Africa is narrowing, according to a new report by the Virtual Private Network company Surf Shark. They report that 30 countries across the continent have ...
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