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Awkward Timing as Italy Withdraws from BRI

Italy has announced its formal withdrawal from the Belt and Road Initiative after joining the China-centered infrastructure and investment project in 2019. The timing of the announcement that Rome won't renew its BRI commitment is notable. It came only a day before the ...

Top U.S. and Chinese Diplomats Talk Israel-Hamar War, Bilateral Ties

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken discussed ways to prevent the Israel-Hamas conflict in Gaza from spreading and agreed to build on recent progress in bilateral ties. “The top priority is to cease fire and to ...

G7 Virtual Meeting With Zelensky Turns Focus to Beijing and South China Sea

The G7 on Wednesday issued a clear warning against China’s military buildup in the South China Sea and stressed that member countries will divest and diversify from China when needed to keep their economies healthy. The wars in Ukraine and the Middle ...

China Hasn’t Used Economic Coercion Even As Philippines Ramped Up South China Sea Strategy: Analyst

Concerns that China might use economic coercion against the Philippines, particularly as Manila ramps up its strategy of showcasing Chinese “aggression” in the South China Sea, have not been borne out, a noted analyst on the issue said. The Philippines’ strategy ...

Vietnam’s Biggest Export Market U.S., Import Source China

The U.S. was Vietnam’s biggest export market in the first 11 months of 2023 at $88 billion, down 13% year-on-year. China was second at $56 billion. Meanwhile, China was Vietnam’s largest import market at $100 billion, followed by South Korea at ...

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 ...

Beijing Hosts 8th Lancang-Mekong Foreign Ministers Meeting

Beijing hosted the 8th Lancang-Mekong Cooperation (LMC) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on Thursday, jointly led by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Myanmar’s Deputy Prime Minister U Than Swe. Wang met individually with multiple representatives on Wednesday as they arrived for ...

China-Angola Meeting As Luanda Navigates Great Power Competition

Angola’s Foreign Minister Téte António met with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in Beijing on Wednesday. He also signed a bilateral investment protection measure with Commerce Minister Wang Wentao. China has sometimes struggled to get such formal investment protection guarantees from ...

China Cuts Tariffs for Six African Countries

China’s customs authorities announced that goods from six least-developed African countries will be exempt from tariffs. 98% of imports from Angola, Gambia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, Mali, and Mauritania will be affected. (XINHUA)

Sino-French Collaboration on South African Power Plant

Sungrow Power Supply, a Chinese maker of solar components, will partner with EDF Renewables, a French green power company, on a new combined solar and wind power plant in South Africa. Sungrow will supply liquid-cooled power storage facilities for the project, ...

South Africa’s Ruling Party Praises “Great Progress” In Xinjiang

Senior members of South Africa’s African National Congress praised China’s “remarkable achievements” in alleviating poverty in its Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, saying the country is drawing inspiration from China. The officials took part in an event at the Chinese embassy in Pretoria, which ...