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Kenya’s New Transport Secretary Criticizes Previous Government’s Deals with China

This week’s confirmation hearing for Kenya’s new Transport Secretary included some revealing details about prominent Chinese projects like the recently inaugurated Nairobi Expressway. Kipchumba Murkomen reacted to widespread complaints about the tolls charged to use the road, a key part of its ...

Kenya Wants to Stretch Rail Loan Repayment Window to 50 Years

Kenya hopes to renegotiate the loan for its Chinese-built Standard Gauge Railway to be repayable over fifty years, the country’s incoming Transport Secretary, Kipchumba Murkomen, said during his confirmation hearing this week.  “We are choked by loans,” he ...

Chinese Embassy Calls for Retreat from Nigeria’s Kaduna State

The Chinese embassy in Nigeria called for Chinese citizens to leave Kaduna state due to ongoing criminal attacks and kidnappings. This is only the latest such warning from the embassy, and Chinese diplomats have also met with Nigerian security officials to ...

Chinese National Convicted of Illegal Mining in Nigeria

A Nigerian court sentenced a Chinese national to five years in jail (with the option of a fine of 1 million naira (about $2,300) for illegal mining. Gang Deng, who works for a Chinese mining company, was caught with 25 tons of unlicensed lepidolite, a mineral used ...

China is Now Zimbabwe’s Biggest Investor

Over the past three years, China invested over $2 billion in Zimbabwe and is now the Southern African country’s largest foreign investor.  This was the main takeaway of a symposium on the economic benefits of Zimbabwe-China relations, which took place in ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Misadventures in the Skin Trade

This week I spent a few days in Cape Town, in time for a minor, if telling, crisis in international agricultural trade. A ship crammed with 19,000 (mostly still living) cows was stuck in Cape Town harbor, en route from Brazil to the Middle East.
As South African animal welfare authorities scrambled to inspect the horrors on board, the city was enveloped in a powerful farmyard funk. The entire episode can ...

Chinese Building of Cambodia’s Ream Naval Base Speeds Up

The Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative (AMTI), a U.S. think tank affiliated with the Center for Strategic and International Studies, published satellite images appearing to show rapid progress in the Chinese-constructed Ream naval base in Cambodia, with land being cleared and construction underway. ...