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U.S. Internet Freedom Pledge Fails to Get Global South Support

Sixty countries signed a U.S.-led “Declaration of the Future of the Internet” late last week that called for greater online "openness and democracy." But who chose not to join is rapidly becoming the main story. But who chose not to join is rapidly becoming the main story. ...

Iranian Security Service Buys Advanced Video Surveillance Technology From China

One of China's largest video surveillance companies, Tiandy, is reportedly selling large quantities of sophisticated AI-enabled cameras with facial recognition technology to Iran's Revolutionary Guard and other Iranian security services, according to a report published earlier this month by surveillance research group IPVM.

Ethiopia Seeks to Follow China’s Example By Creating Its Own Social Media Apps as Alternatives to Facebook and Twitter

China's nationalist model of cyber sovereignty received another endorsement in Africa on Monday when Ethiopian officials unveiled new ambitions to "replace" U.S.-made social media and communications apps with local versions that can be regulated and censored.

Burkina Faso Launches New Huawei-Powered Smart City Initiative Using Loan From the China Exim Bank

The Burkina Faso government announced an ambitious new plan last week to build a 650-kilometer fiber-optic network that will connect all of the country's major cities to a new Huawei-powered Smart City platform.  Sensitive to the perception that the ...

New CSIS Report Examines Huawei’s Burgeoning Cloud Services Business in Emerging Markets

While so much of the attention about Huawei's role in emerging markets like Africa focuses on the company's 5G technology, the reality is that the Chinese telco equipment giant is now expanding far beyond hardware, to offer a number of new services that are becoming increasingly popular ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Southward Bound

Over the last few months, you may have seen a few changes around these pages. While our focus has always been (and will always be) on Africa, you probably spotted the odd Southeast Asian or Middle Eastern, or Latin American story cropping up.

Soon there will be more of these. In fact, we are gearing up for a major change. From next week, we are officially rebranding to the China-Global ...

Be Wary of All Those “Hyperbolic” Reports Warning of the Dangers of Chinese Technology

The fear that China is going to export digital authoritarianism and repression to Africa is way overblown and oversimplified in Western media reports and think tank analysis cautions Iginio Gagliardone, a media scholar at Wits University in Johannesburg and one of the world's foremost scholars ...

China, Africa and the Internet, Again

The U.S. House of Representatives Foreign Affairs subcommittee on Africa recently discussed African elections and, not surprisingly, the conversation became about China.  The lawmakers latched on to a narrative that the Chinese Communist Party is actively trying to ...

Nigeria’s Not the Only African Country Seeking to Impose Chinese-Style Restrictions on Internet Activity

The Chinese-inspired model of government control over digital communications and internet activity is becoming increasingly popular in a number of African countries. While no African country goes to the lengths that China does in regulating online behavior, states like Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Uganda, and Ethiopia are definitely employing ...

Will COVID-19 Be the End of Africans in Guangzhou? I Think So, and This Is Why.

Migration to China will never be the same after COVID-19. The health crisis and its consequences will severely impact on local, translocal, and transnational forms of migration. Once COVID-19 ceases to be a threat, foreigners in China will face a new regime of mobility characterized by artificial ...

Huawei’s Surveillance Technology Program “Safe Cities” Now Active in 12 African Countries

The Washington, D.C.-based think tank CSIS published a new report today on the global reach of Huawei's "Safe Cities" products that include facial and license-plate recognition, social media monitoring, and other surveillance capabilities.  CSIS researchers Jonathan Hillman and Maesea McCalpin provided a ...
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