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The News Feed is a curated selection of the most important China-Africa news edited by CAP’s editors in Asia and Africa.

Dozens of Tanzanian Soybean Companies Get the Go-Ahead to Start Exporting to China

TWEET TRANSLATION: 49 Tanzanian companies have been approved by the China Customs Authority to export soybeans to China. The move opens the door for soybean from Tanzania to be purchased in China.
Chinese customs authorities granted approvals to 49 Tanzanian soybean companies this week to begin exporting their crop to China. While the opening of this new market could prove to be very lucrative for Tanzanian farmers, ...

After Living in China For 6 Years, This Female Entrepreneur Returns Home to Launch Zimbabwe’s First All-Women-Owned E-Scooter Delivery Business

Image via CleanTecnica
After spending years living and working in China as an English teacher at an international school. Elizabeth (last name withheld) returned to her native Zimbabwe inspired by China’s prowess in logistics and widespread use of ...

G20 Suspends Debt Repayments For Another Six Months

The G20 is providing developing countries with yet more breathing room to repay their debts. G20 finance ministers and central bank chiefs met yesterday and announced that it would extend the Debt ...

Worsening Security Conditions in Mozambique Threaten Huge US EXIM Bank Pipeline Deal Meant to Stymie China

File image of Mozambican soldiers on patrol in Mocimboa da Praia. ADRIEN BARBIER / AFP
The U.S. Export-Import Bank disregarded warnings about the worsening security situation in Mozambique and went ahead with a risky $4.7 billion loan for a gas pipeline last year that is now in serious trouble.

U.S. Is Apparently Determined to See if It Can Build a “Belt & Road Alternative.” Biden to Discuss With Suga Next Week in DC.

US President Joe Biden speaking on the anniversary of the start of the Covid-19 pandemic on March 11, 2021; and Japan's Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga attending a press conference in Tokyo on March 5, 2021. Mandel NGAN, Yuichi YAMAZAKI / AFP / POOL
U.S. President Joe Biden appears increasingly determined for the U.S. to rally allies in Europe and Asia to develop a rival to China’s Belt and Road Initiative. The issue will reportedly be on the agenda ...

With an Eye on China, U.S. Appoints Veteran Aid Industry Executive to Lead Vaccine Distribution Effort

Gayle Smith speaks after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced her appointment as the new State Department Coordinator for Global COVID Response and Health Security. ALEXANDER DRAGO / POOL / AFP
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced on Monday that Gayle Smith, a former U.S. Agency for International Development administrator and chief executive of the ONE Campaign to eradicate poverty and preventable disease, ...

China Increases Vaccine Deliveries to Africa According to Latest Distribution Figures

China has significantly expanded the breadth of its vaccine distribution drive in Africa in the past two weeks, according to new government figures (April 4) published by state broadcaster CGTN.

Five Reasons Why Chinese Private Investment is Flowing Into Africa

Almost a decade, China passed the United States to become Africa’s leading source of foreign direct investment. LSE Senior Visiting Fellow Shirley Ze Yu explains why Chinese companies are looking to Africa for ...

Chinese Professor Identifies Three Risks For China in Beijing’s Recent Iran Deal

The recent signing of a 25-year comprehensive strategic partnership agreement between China and Iran sparked considerable debate within China about whether the benefits of a deal with Tehran are worth the considerable risks ...

China’s Recent Iran Deal Should be Seen in a Much Broader Context Urges One of China’s Most Prominent Mideast Scholars

There’s been a lot of discussion over the past week about the implications of the China-Iran comprehensive strategic partnership agreement the two sides signed during Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s recent visit to Tehran. Scholars and ...

Beware of the Chinese Chicken Trope in Zambia

A fascinating on-air skirmish broke out on the FRANCE 24 talk show The Debate last week during a conversation over Chinese investment and influence in Zambia. One of the show’s guests, acclaimed China-Zambia scholar Solange ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

What We’ve Lost in the Fire

This weekend was a rough one for South Africa. On Sunday, the country watched as fires around Table Mountain slowly started creeping downhill, towards the beautiful campus of the University of Cape Town (UCT). Soon it was confirmed that the university’s African Studies library, which housed a unique collection of African film, and one of the biggest repositories of historical documents related to Southern Africa, was on fire. Librarians are still trying ...

The Tesla-fication of Vaccines

175 former heads of state, Nobel Prize winners and other illustrious eminences added their support to the call for the U.S. government to mandate a relaxing of intellectual property laws to allow countries in the Global South to mass-produce vaccines without fear of being sued. One of the more revealing details in this discussion is that the mechanism for countries to use a health emergency to momentarily suspend intellectual property rights already exists ...

Unpacking African Agency

Today the South African Institute of International Affairs is holding a webinar featuring new work focusing on African agency in the face of Chinese power. How much power African actors have to shape their engagement with China is one of the field’s most fundamental questions. It touches not only how China’s growing power is felt on the continent, but also on how much agency Africa has in its other external relationships too. The ...

COVID Complaints and the Issue of Soft Power

As an outfit tracking the Africa-China aspect of COVID-19 since its outbreak, we were aware from early on that the pandemic has laid down a new track in a global geopolitical race. So it’s very interesting to see more commentators in the Global North slowly waking up to the reality that providing the world with vaccines and PPE has been a competition all along, and that China is winning. The resultant ...

What Will it Take to Realize Biden’s Vision of an Alternative BRI?

U.S. President Joe Biden’s commitment to rolling out infrastructure domestically and internationally is setting up a fascinating race with China. 

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Disclose the Debt!

If you’re into curling up with a cup of coffee and an 85-page report on Chinese lending, you can’t go wrong with AidData’s How China Lends: A Rare Look into 100 Debt Contracts with Foreign Governments (PDF). One of the most striking findings in a report full of eye-popping ones is the premium China places on secrecy. Many of the 100 examined loan agreements don’t only keep the terms of the agreement hidden ...

The Shifting Landscape of Chinese Financing to Africa

Today we feature a fascinating discussion with Deborah Brautigam and Kevin Gallagher, two of the world’s foremost experts on Chinese lending to the Global South. The conversation provides a glimpse of an emerging landscape: how Chinese influence will shift, and how those shifts will impact the Global South.Both Brautigam and Gallagher’s reveal that Chinese lenders are increasingly wary about exposure to debt in certain countries. This was already true in ...

Start Imagining a Post-Carbon China, and Africa

Chinese total carbon emissions could peak by 2028, with emissions coming from the electricity sector topping out as early as 2025. This is according to Liu Zhenya, who runs the Global Energy Interconnection Development and Cooperation Organization, a Beijing-based think tank. Liu’s previous job is maybe more notable: he used to head State Grid Corporation of China – the largest utility in the world, which runs 88% of China’s electricity supply. Peaking ...

Anchorage and the New (Old) Cold War

So, the first day of the U.S.-China ministerial meeting underway in Anchorage didn’t go so well. Both sides shredded the rigid protocol that usually guides these occasions to launch extended attacks. The effect was a notably undiplomatic clash between diplomats – one that quickly veered into jabs on domestic policy.While China’s nothing-to-see-here denials of the well-documented mass incarcerations in Xinjiang provided a major target for American diplomats, Chinese delegates took aim ...

Why the Debt Trap Narrative Won’t Die Soon (or Ever)

Recent reports of the debt trap’s death might have been exaggerated. Like a vampire that just won’t die, we keep burying it, but it keeps rising from the coffin. This week we saw reports that Kenyan politicians had to clarify again that the Mombasa port itself hasn’t been put up as collateral for Kenya’s ruinous Standard Gauge Railway loans. Instead, the Port company’s profits might be garnished – a distinction that (again) ...

New CARI Report on Chinese Lending to Africa Doesn’t “Tell the Whole Story” Says Well-Known Chinese Analyst

The China-Africa Research Initiative’s (CARI) latest report on the downturn in Chinese overseas lending to African governments that was published earlier this week was not well-received in some quarters of Beijing. ...

China Tries to Calm U.S. Anxieties About New Pact With Iran

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (R) and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi, pose for a picture after signing an agreement in the capital Tehran, on March 27, 2021. AFP
One of China’s most prominent Iran scholars, Fan Hongda from the Shanghai Institute of International Relations, published a column in the Communist Party-controlled English-language newspaper China Daily that appears intended to try and ...

New Report on Chinese Loans Challenges China’s “Win-Win” Narrative

The release of Wednesday’s groundbreaking report that analyzed 100 Chinese state-backed loans to developing countries over a three-year period sparked considerable international media coverage. 

A Groundbreaking New Report Provides Unprecedented Insights Into Chinese Lending Practices Around the World

A new report provides an unprecedented view into Chinese loan contracts with dozens of governments throughout the Global South. Researchers from AidData, the Kiel Institute, and the Center for Global Development analyzed 100 contracts between ...

Michael Pettis: China’s Dramatic Curtailment in Overseas Lending Shows That Beijing is Learning the Same Lesson Today That Other Creditors Learned Years Ago

Acclaimed China economist, Peking University professor, and Carnegie Senior Fellow Michael Pettis posted a 7-part Twitter thread on Tuesday where he reflected on the new data published by the China-Africa Research ...

Nigerian Minister Blames “Selfish Lawmakers” for Jeoparidizing Chinese Railway Loans

File photo of Nigerian Transportation Minister Rotimi Amaechi. PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP
Nigeria’s outspoken Transportation Minister Rotimi Amaechi accused lawmakers in the House of Representatives of being “selfish” for launching a probe into a 2018 Chinese loan agreement.

CAP Expert Network

Aubrey Hruby

Senior Fellow
Atlantic Council

Paul Nantulya

Research Associate
Africa Center for Strategic Studies

Bridget Boakye

Africans on China

April Zhu

Nairobi-based freelance journalist

Roberto Castillo

Lingnan University

Abdi Latif Dahir

The New York Times

Henri Kouam

Economic Researcher
Nkafu policy

Hannah Ryder

Development Reimagined

Africa Benefitting From China’s Determination to Move Away From Australian Commodity Suppliers

File image of an Australian iron ore mine. Australia's mining exports may become the next targets in the country's worsening trade dispute with China. AMY COOPES / AFP FILES / AFP
China appears willing to pay higher financial and environmental costs if it means ending its dependence on Australian commodities including iron ore and coal. China has been steadily diversifying its sourcing of key commodities that ...

Zimbabwe Takes Delivery of More Than a Million Doses of Chinese-Made Vaccines

Zimbabwe took delivery on Tuesday of a huge shipment of more than a million doses of COVID-19 vaccine that it purchased from China. In making the announcement on Twitter, Chinese ambassador Guo ...

Everyone’s Still Trying to Figure Out If The New China-Iran Agreement is a Big Deal or a Whole Lot of Nothing

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (R) and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi, pose for a picture after signing an agreement in the capital Tehran, on March 27, 2021. AFP
Conservative commentators and media in the United States all seem to think that China’s newly signed 25-year strategic cooperation agreement with Iran is a game-changer and marks the emergence of a new anti-democratic power axis. But ...

New Research Reveals China’s Pulling Back on Loans to Africa

China is steadily pulling back the reins on its lending practices in Africa, according to a new report published on Monday by the China-Africa Research Initiative (CARI) at Johns Hopkins University. Researchers ...

UN Secretary-General Issues Stark Warning on Developing World Debt: Too Little’s Been Done and Now It’s Too Late

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres issued a dark warning on Monday that too little had been done to resolve the burgeoning debt crisis in developing countries what has been so far is “too limited in scope ...

A Proposed Senate Bill Intended to Increase U.S. Exports to Africa Seems to be Far More Focused on Confronting China

U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin published a press release on Monday that touted a new bipartisan bill that aims to increase U.S. exports to Africa. The “Increasing American Jobs through Greater Exports ...


China House Student Fellows,

Various Schools, China

By China House Fellows Zang Yiming, 15, Beijing National Day School; Fan Xia, 17, Yao Hua High School and Yu Kaidi, 17, Nanjing Foreign Language School Xianlin Campus

Since March 13, Kenya discovered its first COVID-19 case in Nairobi. Up till March 11, 2021, the cumulative number of confirmed cases ...

Lauren Ashmore,

27, Leiden University, Netherlands

Paraguay, a landlocked country in South America, rarely makes global news headlines. However, images of protesters on the streets of the capital Asunción quickly circulated in international news this month. Protestors were pictured waving their national tricolour flag and holding anti-government posters with slogans such as ‘We are coming for ...

China House Student Fellows,

Various Schools, China

By China House Student Fellows Qinnan He, Larrissa Leung, Linyi Xia and Xuewen Zhang (Authors listed alphabetically, this research article has been authored equally).

“I’ll share you a girl’s story. She’s 35 now with 9 children after being forced to marry at 14. Her mom and dad died when she ...

China House Student Fellows,

Various Schools, China

Almost 15 years ago, allegations were beginning to emerge that China influences African elections. The case in point was Zambia. China became a hot campaign issue in Zambia’s 2005 elections. The opposition, led by Michael ‘King Cobra’ Sata, never missed an opportunity to lash out at then incumbent, Patrick Mwanawasa, over ...

China House Student Fellows,

Various Schools, China

By China House Student Fellows He Ye, 17, Shenzhen College of International Education Ruining Liu, 17, Capital Normal University High School, Liangjing Yi, 17, Shude High School Dujiangyan Foreign Language Experimental School and Xia Zhao, 18, Northfield Mount Hermon School

In the 2020 Global Gender Gap Report released by the ...

By China House Fellows Jinhao Bai, Yi Cheng, Jiasui Xie, Ruoyu Yan

“If we want to confront the issue of racism, everyone needs to take their share of responsibility. This ‘everyone’ includes you, me, and all the other individuals living in this planet.“

                                                                                         –A Guinean Student in Guangzhou

Across ...

China House Student Fellows,

Various Schools, China

By China House Fellows Andy Zhang, Jie Cang, Ziyu Lin and Yirong Xu

“We don’t want gifts and apologies: We want our dignity…We have fractured this world.” – Kevin, student

“But I thought racism doesn’t exist in China…it wasn’t embarrassing, it was dehumanizing.” – Iris, teacher

Born and raised in ...

China House Student Fellows,

Various Schools, China

By China House Student Fellows Xinjian Lyu, Chenxing Ji, Yuncheng Chi, Shizhen Gu

Guangzhou, one of the most developed cities in China, has become a popular place among foreign immigrants. The majority of immigrants here in Guangzhou are Africans who seek better business opportunities.

According to the data on we-medias, ...

By China House Student Fellows Houming Ling, Lynn Yuhan Pan, Meng Zhao and Zach Ziye Zhang

“The African community in Guangzhou is on edge after widespread accounts were shared on social media of people being left homeless this week, as China’s warnings against imported coronavirus cases stoke anti-foreigner sentiment.”CNN Journalists ...

Human Rights Watch’s Africa Advocacy Director Can’t Understand Why African Leaders Are “Shielding China Over Xinjiang”

Photo from a recent conference in Beijing where ambassadors from Burkina Faso, the Republic of Congo, and Sudan all enthusiastically endorsed China's policies in Xinjiang. Image via @WuPeng_MFAChina.
Human Rights Watch Africa Advocacy Director Carine Kaneza Nantulya is puzzled as to why African governments are not doing anything to confront China on the mass internment of Uyghur minorities in Xinjiang. She ...

Chinese Vaccine Shipments to Africa Pick Up As Beijing Reports 260 Million Doses Delivered Worldwide

Chinese vaccine deliveries to Africa appear to have picked up pace with shipments going to more countries over the past week, according to the latest tracking map produced by CGTN.
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