Ties between African countries and China are complex. Understanding this matters


Yu-Shan Wu, University of the Witwatersrand; Chris Alden, London School of Economics and Political Science, and Cobus van Staden, South African Institute of International Affairs

The complex relationship between Africa and China has become even
more complicated this year. Initially, 2018 was set to reaffirm the bond
through the latest Forum on China-Africa Cooperation summit held in
Beijing in September. The summit delivered its usual pageant of African leaders, side deals, and the announcement of a USD$60 billion financing package. The year also saw the recurrence of misgivings about the relationship.

The most explicit theme of this conversation was debt. Donald Trump’s
US administration added fuel to smouldering anxiety, and China found
itself having to defend its lending to Africa…

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