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Illegal Chinese Timber Trade Fuels Insurgency in Mozambique

Officially, Mozambique bans the export of raw timber in an effort to protect what's left of the country's rapidly shrinking forests. But whatever laws are in place are largely disregarded as more than 500,000 tons of timber leave the country each ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Zimbabwe Agreement Could Signal China’s Return to African Rail

TransTech, a subsidiary of China Railway Group, reportedly signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the state-owned National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) that could lead to a recapitalization of the country’s railway network.
Bloomberg reports that the agreement is currently limited to studying the project and producing a feasibility report by the end of June. Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube said: “It is our expectation that in the upcoming Forum for China and Africa taking place ...

Guarding West Africa’s Forests: Exploring Ways to Put an End to Illegal Chinese Timber Trade

Together, the United States and China import $40 billion worth of timber products each year, quite a bit of which is harvested illegally from West Africa's rapidly shrinking forests. But cracking down on this illicit trade is extremely difficult given that ...

How Illegal African Timber Ends Up in Home Depot

At least 1.2 million doors sold to U.S. consumers between 2017 and 2022 at the massive home improvement chain Home Depot came from threatened forests in Equatorial Guinea via China. This is the finding of a new Environmental Investigation Agency report on the trade in okoume, a kind ...

Chinese Company Exports Illegal Timber Worth Millions from DRC Despite Ban: Report

Congo King Baisheng Forestry Development, a Chinese-owned timber company, exported $5 million worth of illegally logged timber in the first six months of 2023 alone, according to a new report by Global Witness. The NGO used satellite imagery to show that the company kept logging in the ...

Undercutting the Amazon? Deregulation in the Wake of South America’s Chinese Investment Boom

By Rebecca Ray As Brazilians head to the polls at the end of this month for a presidential runoff between current President Jair Bolsonaro and former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, one of the many issues on the table is ...

Chinese Demand for Illegal Rosewood Leads to Deforestation in Cameroon

Cameroon is just one of a growing number of African countries that is facing a deforestation crisis due in part to the trade in illegal Rosewood. Large organized crime syndicates are felling vast numbers of these prized trees, smuggling them across ...

“Fishermen Are Suffering, Families Are Starving” Due to Illegal Overfishing by Chinese Trawlers in Sierra Leone, Says Report

Illegal overfishing by Chinese trawlers in Ghana's coastal waters has been well documented, but now stakeholders in other West African countries including Sierra Leone are sounding the alarm. “The Chinese fleet has been taking the profits of the fisheries for 30 ...

Biden-Tshisekedi Meet on Sidelines of G20

DR Congo President Félix Tshisekedi met one-on-one with his U.S. counterpart, Joe Biden, on Friday in the run-up to the G20 summit that took place over the weekend in Rome.  There's been a lot of interest in recent months 

Q&A: How Illegal Chinese Logging Fuels the Islamic Insurgency in Mozambique

This Spring’s crackdown on illegal mining activities in Ghana, including by some Chinese nationals, and the recent high-profile incidents of illicit mining by Chinese companies in the eastern DR Congo have put a spotlight on the issue of unregulated Chinese resource extraction in other ...

The Global Marketplace Versus the Global South

This week The Guardian carried two articles about China’s growing influence in the Pacific Island region. The first, under the headline “Pacific Plunder,” highlights how China imports more wood, fish, and minerals from Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, and elsewhere than any other major ...

25 “Massive” Illegal Chinese Gold Mines Discovered in a Remote Region of Sierra Leone

A group of unknown Chinese entities has reportedly been operating a large-scale illegal gold mining operation in one of the poorest and most remote regions of eastern Sierra Leone, according to an investigative report published in Sunday's edition of the Sierra Leone Telegraph newspaper. ...
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