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Tag Archives: loans

[AUDIO] China is challenging the West’s dominance in foreign aid

Quietly, and largely out of sight, China has emerged to become a major player in the foreign aid space, challenging institutions and norms long established by the West. Although China’s international development budgets remain a tightly guarded state secret, new data  indicates Beijing is spending a lot more money on aid programs than almost anyone had imagined. AidData, a research ... Read More »

[PODCAST] Africa needs infrastructure, China wants to build it. So what’s the problem?

Africa faces a severe infrastructure crisis. Roads, ports, airports, hospitals and telecommunications are all needed to generate the economic growth necessary to support a population that is expected to double by 2050. But that kind of investment doesn’t come cheap. It’s estimated that over the next ten years Africa will need to spend around $100 billion a year — an unattainably high figure for ... Read More »

[PODCAST] Chinese debt in Africa: how much is too much?

African countries are once again binging on foreign debt. Across the continent, external debt has risen sharply, by almost 50% since 2010 according to data from the World Bank, to an estimated 416 billion dollars. Unlike 20–30 years ago when Africa turned to the west for cash, today China is the creditor of choice. The Chinese are shelling out massive ... Read More »

[AUDIO] The danger of too much Chinese debt in Africa

The financial implosion in Venezuela is prompting growing concern in Beijing that China may have been too ambitious in its drive to loan billions of dollars to high-risk countries throughout the global south. Persistently low oil prices combined with corrupt, incompetent leadership in Caracas have pushed the country to the brink of economic collapse. The dire situation in Venezuela raises ... Read More »

FOCAC 6: This time it’s different

When Chinese president Xi Jinping arrives in Johannesburg to lead the upcoming Forum on China Africa Cooperation summit, he will be greeted as an old friend by his African counterparts. There will be smiles, the customary toasts to “win-win development” and a projection of confidence from both sides that all is well in China’s engagement strategy in Africa. But all ... Read More »

[AUDIO] Tanzania’s president knows how to play the China card

Tanzanian president Jakaya Kikwete returned from Beijing this week loaded with $17 billion in new loans, investment deals and infrastructure projects. The Tanzanian leader spent 6 days in Beijing where he met with senior Chinese political and business leaders. Kikwete’s lucrative trip highlights the president’s distinctive ability to effectively manage an increasingly complex geopolitical environment among competing demands from the ... Read More »

[AUDIO] Mugabe critic: Zimbabwe’s ‘old friend’ China is bleeding it dry

Harare-based economist and columnist Vince Musewe doesn’t mince words in his criticism of Zimbabwe’s growing financial dependence. Beijing is ‘bleeding Zimbabwe dry’ through loans and Musewe says enough is enough. He is calling on Robert Mugabe’s government to come clean and reveal the secret deals between the two governments, otherwise Musewe warns Zimbabwe will only sink further in to economic ... Read More »

[AUDIO] China’s Second Continent: The Howard French Interview

China may be sincere in its belief that its engagement in Africa is not neo-colonial or imperial in nature but author Howard French argues that may be what ultimately happens if Beijing continues on its current path. In his provocative new book, China’s Second Continent, French travels across the continent to survey Chinese and African opinions about the PRC’s expansive ... Read More »

The Chinese-African honeymoon is over

There is a growing sense among Africans and Chinese alike that their once heady romance is now entering a new, more pragmatic phase. Across Africa, people and politicians are becoming visibly more concerned about the surging trade deficits, massive loan debts, persistent labor rights violations and a changing immigrant demography that may be beyond their control. China, for its part, ... Read More »