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What a Small Electric Substation in Kinshasa Tells Us About Why Developing Countries Often Prefer to Work With China on Infrastructure

China's ambassador to the DR Congo, Zhu Jing, posted one of those anodyne tweets on Sunday about yet another Chinese-financed infrastructure project in Africa nearing completion. These kinds of Chinese infrastructure soft power propaganda messages (aka "Infrastructure Porn") have become so common ...

There’s a Lot at Stake for China in Turkey’s Elections

It looks like Turkey's bitterly contested presidential election will require a run-off in two weeks since neither President Tayyip Erdogan nor his opposition rival Kemal Kilicdaroglu could secure an outright majority in the first round of voting that took place on Sunday.

Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki Kicks Off Four-Day Visit to China, Meeting With Xi Set For This Week

Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki met with Chinese Premier Li Qiang on Monday, the first day of a near-week-long state visit to Beijing. This is the President's first visit to China since 2006 and his first since Eritrea joined the Belt and Road ...

China Exim Bank to Finance Controversial East African Oil Pipeline: Media Reports

The China Exim Bank will reportedly come to the rescue of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline after Standard Chartered Bank withdrew from the project that aims to transport oil from western Uganda to the coast of Tanzania. Ugandan Energy Minister Ruth ...

South African Utility Boss’s Trip to China Sparks Outrage Back Home Where Millions Fume Without Power

The acting CEO of troubled South African state-owned utility Eskom, Calib Cassim, provoked widespread outrage late last week when it was revealed that he led a high-level delegation to China that also included Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan. Civil society ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Zimbabwe Agreement Could Signal China’s Return to African Rail

TransTech, a subsidiary of China Railway Group, reportedly signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the state-owned National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) that could lead to a recapitalization of the country’s railway network.
Bloomberg reports that the agreement is currently limited to studying the project and producing a feasibility report by the end of June. Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube said: “It is our expectation that in the upcoming Forum for China and Africa taking place ...

Chinese Brands Take a Hit as Smartphone Sales Slump in Mideast and African Countries

First-quarter smartphone shipments to countries in the Mideast and Africa slumped to their lowest level in seven years, with some of China's top device makers all losing share. High inflation and weak local currencies are largely to blame for the downturn, according to analysts at the technology ...

China Passes Japan to Become Largest Auto Exporter

A 58% year-on-year surge in exports in the first quarter of the year propelled China past Japan to become the world's largest auto exporting country. Sales to markets in Europe, Southeast Asia, South America and Africa together accounted for 40% of ...