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DRC President Inaugurates New Chinese-Built Hydropower Plant

Congolese President Félix Tshisekedi opened the floodgates of the new Busanga hydropower station on the Lualaba River in southern Lualaba province's copper/cobalt belt. There's a certain irony in Tshisekdi inaugurating this particular project given that it's part of the massive $6 billion ...

A Chinese-Backed Solar Project in Lesotho Highlights Beijing’s New “Small is Beautiful” Infrastructure Development Strategy in Africa

Some 71 kilometers south of Lesotho’s capital Maseru, the new Mafeteng Solar Power Plant Project generates some 30MW of electricity that could easily power 30,000 homes running household appliances like a fridge, a TV, an electric cooker and a number of lights while also supporting some ...

How Chinese Construction Giant Sinohydro Benefits From Sanctions and Power Shortages in Zimbabwe

Sanctioned and isolated by the West, Zimbabwe’s economy has taken a beating for more than two decades but in that period, a number of Chinese companies have stuck it out and become favorites winning contracts for big-ticket projects. Chinese state-owned Sinohydro ...

Zimbabwe Pushing Chinese Steel Giant’s Plans to Exclusively Import Electricity From Mozambique

Chinese giant Tsingshang’s Zimbabwe subsidiary, Dinson Iron and Steel Company (Disco), will start importing electricity from Mozambique’s Mphanda Nkuwa hydroelectric power project once complete. This follows a plan, supported by the Zimbabwean government, to have Disco exclusively import power for the ...

Chinese-funded, Constructed Sakaï Solar Plant Powers up Central Africa Republic

The Central African Republic (CAR)’s first photovoltaic power plant is now operational following the successful launch of operation of the Sakaï Solar Power Plant last week. In the CAR, power cuts sometimes last 16 hours a day, badly hitting the ...

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 ...

Chinese-Funded, Constructed Dams Prioritized in Zimbabwe’s Irrigation and Energy Plan

Zimbabwe is accelerating the construction of 12 large dams to irrigate at least 350,000 hectares by 2025 and generate hydropower while also providing potable water. The acceleration plan is meant to increase land acreage under irrigation with farmers in Zimbabwe ...

Chinese-Built Cross-Frontier Hydro System Inaugurated in Mali

This weekend saw the inauguration of the Gouina Hydroelectric dam and Malinguina hydropower station in Mali. Funded by the China Exim Bank and built by PowerChina, the facilities form part of a transfrontier hydroelectric system linking Mali, Senegal, and Mauritania.  ...