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China’s Role in Africa’s Economic Transformation

Over the past 20 years China has played a pivotal, arguably indispensable role in Africa’s economic development. China is by far Africa’s largest bilateral trading partner, a major source of foreign investment and a vital player in helping Africa to close its huge infrastructure deficit. But in recent years, since around 2015, the economic relationship between these two regions has been steadily evolving. Now, with the rise of the Belt and Road, China is no longer as dependent on Africa for the oil, timber and minerals that make up the bulk of Chinese trade and investment on the continent.

Tsinghua University professor Tang Xiaoyang and Overseas Development Institute Research Fellow Linda Calabrese recently published a new paper that explores China’s role in Africa’s economic transformation. They join Eric & Cobus to discuss their findings and share their insights on the current state of China-Africa economic ties amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

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The China-Global South Project is passionately independent, non-partisan and does not advocate for any country, company or culture.


A carefully curated selection of the day’s most important China-Global South stories. Updated 24 hours a day by human editors. No bots, no algorithms.


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