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The Mystery of China’s Interest-Free Loan Cancelation: Connecting the Dots

Amid China's controversial role in debt crises from Sri Lanka to Zambia and beyond, the recent cancelation of 23 interest-free loans to 17 African countries caused a lot of misunderstanding, not least because the Chinese government has still not published official lists ...

Understanding the Significance of China’s Interest-Free Loans Cancelation

By Oyintarelado Moses and Jyhjong Hwang On August 19, 2022, China announced it would waive 23 interest-free loans (IFLs) with maturity by the end of 2021 for 17 unspecified African countries worth an unspecified total amount. This announcement comes as ...

We Need to Talk About Africa’s Whole Debt Problem – Not Just the Chinese Part

This week I participated in a seminar hosted by the South African Institute for International Affairs comparing the on-the-ground experiences of Chinese-led infrastructure projects in Southeast Asia and Africa (watch the event here). Researchers from opposite ends ...

China, Japan Are Kenya’s Top Infrastructure Financiers This Year

China and Japan are collectively financing half a billion dollars worth of Kenyan infrastructure projects in the current fiscal year, more than any other country, according to new data from the National Treasury in Nairobi.

Angolan Presidential Candidate Eyes Chinese Loans

Adalberto Costa Jr., a candidate in this week’s presidential election in Angola, will launch an audit of the country’s debt to China if he wins. He pledged that any loans not resulting in infrastructure will be renegotiated. 

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 ...

How a Major Shift in Chinese Lending is Backfiring Across the Global South

Chinese lending is increasingly shifting from boosting development to helping indebted countries keep the lights on. This is now adding to debt distress across the developing world. AidData, a research group at the College of William and Mary ...

Kenya’s Foreign Exchange Reserves Fall Due to Repayment of Railway Loans to China

The Kenyan government cut a check for $226 million last week to service its debts to the China Exim Bank for the loans used to build the Standard Gauge Railway. The Kenyan Central Bank singled out the repayment as a reason why the country's foreign exchange reserves ...

Chinese Lending Poses “Serious Danger” to Poor Countries Warns German Chancellor

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz became the latest Western leader to warn about the purported systemic risks to the global economy posed by Chinese lending to developing countries.  Chancellor Scholz addressed the issue at an event in Stuttgart ...

Kenya’s Debt Payments to China Shoot Up as Grace Periods End

Kenya’s debt repayments to China will jump by 135% as grace periods for the repayment of large infrastructure loans come to an end. Kenya will pay $630.7 million to Chinese lenders this financial year, up from $268.2 million last year.

Could China Ease South Africa’s Electricity Woes?

Radio702, a prominent news and talk radio station in South Africa, this week discussed whether China might be able to help the country out of its ongoing electricity crisis. The power issue is back in the headlines as the country’s beleaguered power utility Eskom is ...
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