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Ruto Decisions Raise Questions About SGR’s Financial Future

Repaying Kenya’s $3.7 billion loan to China for the Standard Gauge Railway is key to Kenya’s broader financial future. However, two decisions by the country’s new President, William Ruto, will make that much harder, raising the danger that the burden could fall on taxpayers. ...

Logistics Shift to Mombasa to Hit SGR Profits 

One of William Ruto's first actions as Kenyan president was to reverse a decision made by his predecessor to force logistics operators to use the Chinese-built Standard Gauge Railway's inland port in Naivasha for logistics and clearance services.  Ruto said the ...

Tanzania is the Latest Focal Point For Railway Construction in the Post-Megaloan Era

The Tanzanian government opened bidding to build the next stage of its new Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) network that will extend to the border with Burundi. Construction companies have been invited to submit proposals to build a 367-kilometer ...

Turns Out China Still Finances Railway Projects in Africa

Until recently, it was widely understood that China had stepped back from lending large amounts of money to African governments for railway projects with questionable prospects of repayment. Apparently, that was an exaggeration. Sudan, according to Bloomberg, secured ...

Tanzania and Zambia to Revive TAZARA Rail Line

The leaders of Tanzania and Zambia have agreed to find the money to refurbish the Chinese-built TAZARA rail line. The line, built at great financial and human cost by China in the early 1970s, is an icon of early Africa-China cooperation. It’s unknown if ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Climate Sweet, Climate Bitter

Last week it was Pakistan, this week South Florida. The climate collapse is like a monstrous four-dimensional version of whack-a-mole. You never know where – or how – it will hit. But the hits keep coming.

With the damaged Nord Stream pipeline (and the Global North’s unmitigated hydrocarbon dependence it represents) bubbling away in the Baltic Sea, U.S. climate czar John Kerry’s high-handed comments to the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment earlier this month ...

Angola Set a New Standard For Infrastructure Contracting With the Lobito Corridor Concession (Which China Lost)

Angola's Ministry of Transport is receiving high praise for the way it handled the bidding for the $333 million concession to re-build and operate the colonial-era Lobito Corridor railway that connects the copper and cobalt belts in Zambia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo ...

The North-South Split in the World’s China Discourse

The discourse coming out of the U.S. and China around the visit of the U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan keeps reminding me of a particular stage direction in Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf:  George: Stop braying!

China, Iran Aim to Boost Trade Through New Railway

A new railway cargo line connecting the southwestern Chinese province of Ningxia with the northern Iranian port city of Anzali is now operational.  The new 8,500-kilometer route is supposedly twice as fast as other overland transport routes and even speedier than an earlier rail link. ...

China’s Top Diplomat for Sub-Saharan Africa Visits Tanzania

Wu Peng, the Director-General for Sub-Saharan Africa in China's Foreign Ministry, continued his African tour with a visit to Tanzania. He tweeted that he met with Tanzania’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation Liberata Mulamula but didn't specify what they discussed. (@WUPENG_MFA) ...

Kenyan Parliament to Investigate Debunked SGR Rumors

A Kenyan parliamentary oversight committee wants to review the controversial contract for the Chinese-built Standard Gauge Railway. But rather than addressing the contract’s opacity, it will again focus on the rumor that it puts up Mombasa port as collateral - a rumor that has been debunked ...
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