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President Edgar Lungu Just Straight Up Asked Xi Jinping for Zambia’s Debts to be Cancelled

African appeals for Chinese debt relief have until recently been somewhat vague and indirect, at least publicly. Well, that changed when the spokesman for Edgar Lungu released details of Zambian president's call on Monday with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping.  “President ...

Chinese Media Coverage of the Xi-Lungu Call Didn’t Say Anything About Debt Relief But Did Mention the One China Policy

Chinese official news coverage of Monday's call between President Xi Jinping and Zambian leader Edgar Lungu highlighted the stark disparity between the two countries' current political priorities. Neither the Xinhua news agency nor the China Daily ...

China’s Ambassador to Somalia Attempts to Downplay African Debt Concerns

China's Ambassador to Somalia, Qin Jian, is on something of a Twitter tear these past few days. He's posted dozens of short commentaries on everything from Taiwan (not surprising given the recent Somaliland-Taiwan announcement), Somalia's potential for natural resource ...

UN Agency is Upset With Moody’s After the Firm Took Action Against Four African Countries

The United Nations’ Department of Economic and Social Affairs is disappointed with Moody's Investors Services after the global ratings agency put four African countries up for review following their decision to join the G20's debt service suspension initiative (DSSI), according to a report in ...

The Algerian Army is the First Customer for China’s New Shoulder-Mounted HJ-12 Anti-Missile System

In a somewhat surprising move, the Chinese military will not be the first client to get its hands on the new HJ-12 (红箭-12) shoulder-mounted anti-tank missile system produced by the large state-owned weapons contractor NORINCO. That honor will instead go to the Algerian army. It bought an ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

The Overwhelming 2024-Ness of It All

In so many ways, 2024 feels like an inflection point — one of those years that carries within it a future yet unformed.
The U.S. election is of course the most prominent of these trends. If Donald Trump becomes the Rublican nominee, as expected, it will kick off a series of domino effects that could reshape the United States’ relationship with itself, and with it, the whole world.

Get ...

New Book Explains Why You Shouldn’t Focus Only on Hard Metrics to Evaluate China’s Engagement in Africa

A highly-anticipated new book by acclaimed China-Africa scholar Lina Benabdallah went on sale today. "Shaping the Future of Power" details a key difference that distinguishes China's engagement strategy in Africa from that of other countries: its extensive professional and skills-transfer initiatives.  ...

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Zambian President Edgar Lungu might have been surprised to hear that the big takeaway from his call on Monday with Xi Jinping wasn't debt relief or anything to do with COVID-19. In the unlikely event that he opened a copy of the China Daily newspaper on Tuesday ...

Relationships: China’s Competitive Advantage in Africa

To many outside observers, Chinese engagement in Africa is often evaluated based on hard metrics like the amount of trade, the number of immigrants, investment figures. While those data points are no doubt important, Wake Forest University Assistant Professor Lina Benabdallah ...