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Q&A: How Will the G7’s PGII Differ from China’s BRI? An Expert Weighs In

Responses to the G7’s Partnership for Global Infrastructure Investment (PGII) have run the gamut from enthusiastic approval to strident condemnation. However, many have also raised questions about how the initiative will actually work.  While the PGII is currently presented as an ...

U.S. Forms Coalition to Break China’s Hold on Critical Mineral Supply Chains

The United States, along with partner countries in North America, Europe, and Asia unveiled a new Mineral Security Partnership (MSP) pact earlier this month that aims to challenge China's control of supply chains for critical resources like cobalt and rare earths.

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 ...

German Construction Companies Struggle to Find a Way to Compete Against Chinese Rivals in Africa

European leaders have made it very clear in recent weeks that they intend to compete vigorously against Chinese rivals for a larger slice of the African infrastructure construction market. While that may sound nice, in practice it's going to be difficult. ...

More Details on How Germany’s Siemens Outbid Chinese Contractors to Win the Red-to-Med High-Speed Railway in Egypt

This week's news that the German company Siemens outbid Chinese and French contractors to build the new Egyptian high-speed railway that will go from Ain Sukhna on the Red Sea to the Mediterranean port city of Marsa Matruh took some by surprise, given how dominant Chinese ...

Analysis from Cobus van Staden

Great Changes Unseen in a Century (and Frequently Ignored Now)

Big things are happening in the world, but don’t expect me to tell you what they are. 

Like many South Africans, I’ve been a little distracted these days. The country’s notorious electricity situation has worsened to blackouts three times a day. People like me, whose work depends on internet access, migrate across the city every few hours to cafes and other workplaces that still have power. All the time, Johannesburg ...

Automakers Keen to Reduce Reliance on Cobalt-Powered EV Batteries

Rumors are buzzing within the Chinese auto industry that Tesla is trying for the first time to produce a car without a cobalt-powered battery. Tesla is reportedly considering the use of Chinese EV giant BYD's LFP (Lithium iron phosphate) Blade battery. ...

Four Months Later, Chinese Scholars Respond to Critical Lending Report

It took a while but Chinese scholars have finally responded to a groundbreaking report published on March 31st by a group of four U.S. and European think tanks that details the contents of Chinese loan contracts. Huang Meibo and Niu Dongfang, ...

Why Does China Want to Cooperate With Europe in Africa?

What’s in a phone call? Well, when it’s from China’s leader to the presidents of Germany and France then maybe it's something beyond idle chit-chat. And, when it comes on the heels of the G7 summit which Xi Jinping dismissed as international politics of the past, then ...

In What Could Be Bad News From the DR Congo, the Cobalt-Free EV Battery May Happen Much Sooner Than We Thought

The world's leading automakers are making much faster progress than anticipated in moving away from electric vehicle batteries that contain cobalt. VW, Tesla, and the Chinese EV giant BYD (the world's second-largest EV maker) have all either developed new cobalt-free batteries or are in late-stage development.

Leaders From the World’s Major Powers Convene in Two Separate Summits. African Issues Addressed in One… Albeit Just Barely

Two separate international summits took place on Friday. China was a primary actor in one and a prominent theme of the other. And in both the U.S.-Japan summit in Washington and the Franco-German virtual meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping, key Global ...
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