Follow CGSP on Social Media

Listen to the CGSP Podcast

New Research Reveals China’s Pulling Back on Loans to Africa

China is steadily pulling back the reins on its lending practices in Africa, according to a new report published on Monday by the China-Africa Research Initiative (CARI) at Johns Hopkins University. Researchers Deborah Brautigam and Kevin Acker found that Chinese loans to African public sector borrowers fell again in 2019 to $7.7 billion, down 30% from the year before. And that is a significant decrease when measured against the $28 billion that China lent in 2016.

CARI’s new figures about what’s happening in Africa echo similar findings made by researchers at Boston University’s Global Development Policy Center last year that showed an equally dramatic plunge in total lending by China’s two policy banks, the China Development Bank and the China Exim Bank. In that case, lending amounts went from $75 billion in 2016 to just $4 billion in 2019

  • Get a daily email packed with the latest China-Africa news and analysis.
  • Read exclusive insights on the key trends shaping China-Africa relations.
  • Full access to the News Feed that provides daily updates on Chinese engagement in Africa and throughout the Global South.

China, Africa and the Global South... find out what’s happening.

Subscribe today for unlimited access.

What is The China-Global South Project?


The China-Global South Project is passionately independent, non-partisan and does not advocate for any country, company or culture.


A carefully curated selection of the day’s most important China-Global South stories. Updated 24 hours a day by human editors. No bots, no algorithms.


Diverse, often unconventional insights from scholars, analysts, journalists and a variety of stakeholders in the China-Global South discourse.


A unique professional network of China-Africa scholars, analysts, journalists and other practioners from around the world.