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Over the past 20 years China has played a pivotal, arguably indispensable role in Africa's economic development. China is by far Africa's largest bilateral trading partner, a major source of foreign investment and a vital player in helping Africa to close its huge infrastructure deficit. But in recent years, since around 2015, the economic relation…
 
Combatting fake news, misinformation and outright propaganda is one of the foremost challenges confronting policymakers in Africa and elsewhere around the world. Some of that misleading information is distributed organically while other memes are intentionally deployed by governments to influence local populations. Two researchers in South Africa a…
 
This week on the Caixin-Sinica Business Brief: Chinese President Xi Jinping announces that China will “actively consider” joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership; China’s national legislature approves an amended copyright law that increases maximum penalties for copyright infringement tenfold; and the Malay…
 
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 from the internet cables that deliver connectivity to the networks that route all of th…
 
There's an emerging consensus in Washington, D.C. that a future Biden foreign policy towards Africa is probably going to look a lot like the policies enacted by the Obama administration. Two aspects of this new/old approach stand out from what the U.S. is currently doing on the continent: LESS FOCUS ON CHINA: While confronting China around the worl…
 
After a tumultuous 3.5 years, a wide array of African stakeholders are hoping for a "reset" in Washington's ties with the continent following the election of President-elect Joe Biden. Specifically, they're hoping the United States will re-engage multilateral institutions like the WHO and the WTO, resume its traditional leadership role in internati…
 
African residents living in China today are either students or traders, according to widely-held perceptions. With more than 80,000 African students studying in China every year and tens of thousands of people from across the continent doing business in port cities like Guangzhou and Yiwu, it's not surprising that a lot of people see it that way. B…
 
This week on the Caixin-Sinica Business Brief: In a sign that may signal warming business relations between China and the U.S., China’s Foran Energy Group has signed a first-term, five-year deal with an American liquefied natural gas producer; continuing a six-month expansion, China’s domestic manufacturing rises to the highest levels since January…
 
Since its inception in 2013, Chinese government officials have insisted that the Belt and Road is solely an economic initiative and does not have any military motivations. But the BRI's civil-military distinction is no longer as clear cut as it used to be. President Xi Jinping himself called for a strong BRI security system to protect China's overs…
 
This week on the Caixin-Sinica Business Brief: China unveils its 14th Five-Year Plan, which details a goal of GDP per capita levels similar to those of Spain, South Korea, and Italy; a Caixin exclusive reveals that China may be getting ready to scrap a key element of the way it sets the daily reference rate for the yuan; and China signs more debt-f…
 
Africa's economic landscape today looks bleak. Debt levels, unemployment rates and bankruptcies are all on the rise across much of the continent. And it doesn't look like there's going to be much help from the international community to weather the worst financial crisis in a generation. Both Chinese and private creditors aren't giving borrowers a …
 
Amid the shutdowns in both Asia and Africa due to the COVID-19 outbreak there've been serious disruptions to the illegal wildlife trade between the two continents. But even though it's been harder to get African wildlife products to markets in China, Vietnam and elsewhere in Asia, the pace of killing has actually gone up by some estimates. Park ran…
 
This week on the Caixin-Sinica Business Brief: Sweden bans Chinese telecommunications giants Huawei and ZTE Corp. from its 5G network; China’s central bank announces its digital currency will be able to be used without an internet connection; and one of China’s largest fast-food chains rolls out artificial meat options made from seaweed proteins. I…
 
The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is a central theme of China's foreign policy, particularly in developing regions like Africa where it's linked to billions of dollars of infrastructure development. But when you ask Chinese officials "what exactly is the BRI?" no one really seems to have a definitive answer. It's a development agenda, a foreign po…
 
The small, impoverished land-locked Southeast Asian nation of Laos is a focal point of China's ambitious Belt and Road Initiative and also emerging a case study in how Beijing is handling a burgeoning debt crisis in the country. Just as in a number of African countries, Laos is increasingly unable to repay the massive infrastructure loans that it b…
 
This week on the Caixin-Sinica Business Brief: China reports 4.9% economic growth in the third quarter; President Xí Jìnpíng 习近平 made remarks on the 40th anniversary of the establishment of the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone; the Shenzhen Stock Exchange admits to a 32-minute technical error in its trading system; and budget household goods retailer…
 
Even before the current economic crisis brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic there were widespread concerns about Chinese lending practices in Africa. The U.S. and other critics contend that Beijing is employing a predatory lending strategy where it intentionally loads up poor countries with unsustainable amounts of debt. When they invariably can't …
 
Last May, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced that Beijing would make any future COVID-19 vaccine available to Africa and other developing regions as a "global public good." He didn't explain, though, what that actually meant. Since that speech to the World Health Assembly, there've been very few details as to how China plans to distribute a C19…
 
This week on the Caixin-Sinica Business Brief: Shenzhen will provide approximately $1.5 million of coupons to residents to test the digital yuan, China’s virtual currency; coverage of the 2020 NBA finals returns to television in China; and SMIC, China’s largest chipmaker, finds itself caught in the U.S.-China tech war with new export restrictions. …
 
Last month, China released its first-ever white paper on its participation in United Nations Peacekeeping Operations (PKOs) around the world. The lengthy document provided an overview of China's 30-year history in contributing to PKOs and featured some new insights on Beijing's ambitions to become an even larger player in the UN's Department of Pea…
 
Back in 2007, China led an ambitious program to eradicate malaria in the Comoros Islands, a small island nation off the coast of Mozambique in southeastern Africa. And, for the most part, they were successful but it wasn't easy and, not surprisingly, the Chinese medical teams leading the effort encountered a lot of challenges. Experts today are now…
 
The debt crisis in Zambia got a lot worse this week after bondholders refused the government's request for a 6-month repayment delay. Those private creditors said they're frustrated by the government's lack of transparency about the total amount of debt and how much is truly owed to China. In Angola, investors are equally worried about the governme…
 
There've been major developments over the past week in the African debt crisis. It appears that Angola and China reached a consensus on how to restructure the estimated $20 billion of loans that Luanda owes Beijing. This deal then paved the way for the IMF to come in with its own financial package for Angola. Meantime, Zambia announced that it will…
 
This week on the Caixin-Sinica Business Brief: The proposed ban on TikTok downloads has been blocked by a U.S. judge, revenues for Chinese travel agency Trip.com fall 64 percent year-on-year as international travel remains low due to pandemic concerns, and Xi Jinping says China aims to be carbon neutral by 2060. In addition, we speak with Caixin Gl…
 
The presence of China's distant fishing fleet in African waters is increasingly becoming a contentious domestic political issues in a number of countries, particularly in West Africa. At a campaign rally in September, Ghanaian vice presidential candidate Naana Jane Opoku-Agyemang told supporters that if elected this December her administration ban …
 
This week on the Caixin-Sinica Business Brief: The fate of WeChat in the United States remains in limbo, Washington further tightens the screws on Huawei, and Trump approves a TikTok-Oracle deal. In addition, we speak with Caixin Global managing editor Doug Young, about the makeup of the board of TikTok Global.…
 
On this special 500th episode of the China in Africa Podcast, Eric & Cobus join Kaiser Kuo and Jeremy Goldkorn on the popular Sinica podcast to reflect on the past ten years of China-Africa relations. JOIN THE DISCUSSION: Facebook: www.facebook.com/ChinaAfricaProject Twitter: @eolander | @stadenesque | @KaiserKuo |@goldkorn SUBSCRIBE TO THE CAP'S D…
 
China's importing a lot more African agricultural products these days. Zambian blueberries were recently approved to enter the China market, Namibian beef shipments started this year, Ghanaian cocoa is now traded through a new exchange in Hunan province and, after more than a year of delays, the first shipments of Kenyan avocados to China has arriv…
 
This week on the Caixin-Sinica Business Brief: The American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai releases its latest survey, China allows increased foreign ownership of virtual private network (VPN) services, China Electronics Corp. launches cloud services, Tokyo-based SBI Group considers leaving Hong Kong, and a six-month investigation into the harsh w…
 
Two-way China-Africa trade fell sharply in the first half of the year to $82 billion, down 20% from the same time last year. Trade between the two regions has been severely disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing lockdowns. But now that the Chinese economy is getting back up to speed and a growing number of African countries are re-openi…
 
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