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New Research Aims to Debunk Misperceptions About Chinese Investment in Ethiopia

Workers at Welele Honey main processing plant in Mekele, Ethiopia, are pictured packaging honey for sale. ZACHARIAS ABUBEKER / AFP

One of the common misperceptions about Chinese investment in Africa is there’s no difference between state-owned and private companies. In many instances, they’re referred to simply as “Chinese” companies without understanding that there are actually substantial differences among the various corporate actors that are now active in Africa.

Nowhere is that more evident than in Ethiopia which has been more successful than almost any other African country in attracting Chinese private sector investment — totaling $570 from 2000 to 2018, according to new research from University of London scholar Weiwei Chen.

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