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Why the Africa-China Relationship Poses a Climate Challenge to Europe

Thinking about Africa in the context of the climate crisis makes for some cognitive dissonance. On the one hand, the continent’s massive potential for renewable energy, its stocks of critical minerals, and its storehouses of oil, gas, and coal make it a huge “ka-ching” in continental form. ...

Latin America’s Diplomacy: Balancing EU and China With Mercosur

By Alvaro Mendez and Chris Alden The negotiations for the EU-Mercosur Free Trade Agreement (FTA) have spanned over two decades and are now facing renewed delays. This prolonged process is a crucial moment in Latin America's trade policy, especially as Brazilian ...

Ukraine Shows That China is Not Yet Ready to Head an Alternative World Order

By Lukas Fiala, Hugo Jones, and Chris Alden Russia’s steadily escalating war in Ukraine has shocked Europe’s post-Cold War security order to its core.  Over the past week, we saw China’s party-state kicking into gear as ambassadors and spokespersons increasingly

Ghana Government Under Growing Pressure on Illegal Fishing

The European Union is putting pressure on Ghana to tackle illegal fishing in its waters, threatening its access to the lucrative European seafood market. In 2021, the EU issued a so-called yellow card, saying that if Ghana doesn’t improve fisheries management, it could face seafood-related sanctions.

A Visual Comparison of the Issues Address at the Two Sessions Foreign Minister Press Briefing

Africa, the Korean peninsula, and multilateralism are no longer prominent themes in the Foreign Minister's annual press briefing on the sidelines of the Two Sessions forum in Beijing.  The Chinese state-run media outlet CGTN produced a visualization of the topics addressed ...

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 ...

Sino-European Competition for Influence in Africa

It's only been a few weeks since the Europe-Africa summit in Brussels, EU where officials unveiled a huge €150 billion development package for Africa that aimed to convey a two-part message: 1) We're ready to engage Africa and 2) we're not going to cede further ...

Deconstructing Chinese Media Criticism of Western Engagement in Africa

Soon after the conclusion of the Europe-Africa Summit in Brussels last week, Chinese media and scholars began to weigh in with their analysis of the gathering which, not surprisingly, was decidedly negative. All week, there've been a number ...

Surprise Surprise… Europe-Africa Summit Gets Poor Reviews in China

Last week's Europe-Africa summit largely passed unnoticed in China due largely to the fact that it coincided with the final days of the Beijing Winter Olympics and the extensive coverage related to the unfolding crisis in Ukraine. Now, though, some analysis ...

If the EU Really Wants to Challenge China in Africa, It’s Going to Have to Do Better

European leaders were all smiles on Friday at the end of a two-day summit in Brussels with their African counterparts which they hope will reset strained ties. The highlight of the summit was the announcement of a hugely ambitious $170 billion ...

Africa-Europe Summit Begins Amid Hope, Skepticism and a Wary Eye on China

European and African leaders kicked off a two-day summit in Brussels on Thursday amid a sense that ties between these two continents have reached a critical inflection point. European leaders, notably French President Emmanuel Macron, the current rotating president of the ...
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