Skip to main content

China-Africa forum strengthens ties

Axios.com, Bill Bishops

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa (l) and Alibaba chairman Jack Ma (r) at Alibaba headquarters one day after the conclusion of 2018 FOCAC. Photo: VCG/VCG via Getty Images

 

Xi and his colleagues spent the last week feting the leaders from 53 of 54 African nations at the Forum of China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) summit.

What's happening: Xi promised another $60 billion in financing to Africa along with eight initiativesfor PRC-Africa cooperation. The $60 billion amount was the same as promised in 2015, but with changes to the composition, as Yun Sun wrote in Brookings Institution note:

[J]udging from the volume and composition of China’s 2018 FOCAC financial pledges to Africa, China’s commitment remains strong, but appears to be more cautious and calculating than its pledges from the past summit.

The concessional side of Chinese financing is being moderated, while China has grown visibly more focused on the commercial and viability aspects. From the traditional model of “resources for infrastructure,” China appears to be morphing toward the next stage: equity investment by a more diverse group of investors supported by state development finance.

Meanwhile, Africa still has major catch-up to do to attract more Chinese investment and to diversify its trade relations with China.

What we're hearing: South African President Cyril Ramaphosa spoke to reporters after the summit, telling them China's relationship with Africa has "now entered a golden age," according to Caixin. Per the report:

“There’s no new colonialism,” Ramaphosa told reporters on Tuesday, echoing Chinese President Xi Jinping, who said on the first day of the summit on Monday that China’s investment in Africa came with no political strings attached.

“We were all engaged in struggle against the colonialists from the Northern Hemisphere,” he said, referring to the long-standing relationship between South Africa’s ruling African National Congress party and the Communist Party of China.

Quick take: Much of Western media coverage about the summit has been critical, but we shouldn't forget that the African leaders have agency. Plus, there doesn't seem to be a better offer/plan for them coming from the West.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Balochistan to establish first medical university

https://www.dawn.com/news/1366135

The Newspaper's Staff CorrespondentOctober 25, 2017QUETTA: The provincial cabinet on Tuesday approved the draft for establishing a medical university in Balochistan.Health minister Mir Rehmat Saleh Baloch made the announcement while speaking at a press conference after a cabinet meeting.“The cabinet has approved the draft of the medical university which would be presented in the current session of the Balochistan Assembly,” he said, adding with the assembly’s approval the Bolan Medical College would be converted into a medical university.Published in Dawn, October 25th, 2017

China’s 'Digital Silk Road': Pitfalls Among High Hopes

https://thediplomat.com/2017/11/chinas-digital-silk-road-pitfalls-among-high-hopes/


Will information and communication technologies help China realize its Digital Silk Road?By Wenyuan WuNovember 03, 2017In his speech at the opening ceremony of China’s 19th Party Congress, President Xi Jinping depicted China as a model of scientific and harmonious development for developing nations. Xi’s China wants to engage the world through commerce but also through environmental protection and technological advancement. This includes Beijing’s efforts to fight climate change with information and communication technologies (ICTs) that it plans to export along its “One Belt One Road” initiative (OBOR). Xi may have ambitious plans, but could China be throwing up obstacles in its own way?In his speech, the Chinese president emphasized the need to modernize the country’s environmental protections. The Chinese state is taking an “ecological civilization” approach to development and diplomacy, with a natio…

Germany’s Siemens sets up Belt and Road office in Beijing

https://gbtimes.com/germanys-siemens-sets-up-belt-and-road-office-in-beijing
Germany’s Siemens sets up Belt and Road office in Beijingby Janne Suokas Mar 23, 2018 15:20 TRADEINVESTMENTBELT AND ROAD INITIATIVEGerman industrial and engineering group Siemens will set up a Belt and Road office in Beijing. surberFlickrCC BY 2.0
German industrial and engineering group Siemens will set up an office in Beijing to boost international cooperation under China’s Belt and Road initiative, the company said on Friday.The move will help strengthen Siemens’ cooperation with Chinese and international companies and expand business opportunities brought about by the Belt and Road initiative, according to the company’s statement.The Belt and Road initiative is China’s ambitious project to boost trade and infrastructure investment in more than 65 countries along the ancient Silk Road trade routes from Asia to Europe and Africa.Siemens said it had already partnered with hundreds of Chinese companies in overse…