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Why Is China In Africa ??.....

You may be forgiven if “the
final frontier”
was to mirror the title of a Hollywood blockbuster or you
could also be mistaken; that “the final frontier” could not be reflective of a
continent; usually dubbed the darkest place on earth.





The truth is that Africa is the next New frontier of mineral exploration. With
major stakeholders battling, wilding and conniving their charm against a
complex network of shady deals to outwit the cool, smart and calculative moves
of the Chinese.



Africa strategic importance can not be underplayed nor it value cheapened. It’s
geographical positioning and untapped mineral wealth makes it a unique selling
proposition to any investor. The trading ability of any multinational company
is dependant on contracts signed and memorandum of understandings reached
between hosts and investing governments.







African leaders and their
advisers have finally awakened,
realising what the new type of
globalise politics is all about. Who are the new major players and what choices
have to be made? Africa finds it’s self in a very unique position to be able to
choose among multiple investors all bidding for the same job. This increases
the value of Africa’s currency ensuring that the best deals are signed.
Africa’s choice will be at the expense of western governments and their
respective multinational companies. A liberalised continent is voting with its
feet and changing suppliers, manufacturers and investors all at the same time.
This is ground breaking and truly unprecedented.





He who pays the piper will always call the tune. Who ever controls Africa’s
minerals resources, builds infrastructure, provide cheap products for African
markets and loans to support government initiatives, will always have an
influence over Africa’s affairs.



Most developed nations are not sure how to respond to Africa. Europeans who
taken a hard line on the African countries, risk having their contracts
cancelled and deals renegotiated. This has resulted in a significant shift in
mindset. The USA and Europe have changed long term hardened position against
the Sudan and Lybia in exchange for mineral contracts. The French softer line
with Guinea’s military junta and desperate efforts by Nicholas Sakosi to
mending the rift with the Angolan’s, after a billion dollar military deal that
went sour. It’s all change in the name of and fear of loosing Billion Dollar
contracts. Especially as the Chinese are always lurking in the shadows; to snap
up contracts that are being renegotiated. African governments are using this
unique opportunity to negotiate hard with Europe and the USA for rates and
terms that benefit their communities.





Chinas influence in Africa is steadily growing. China will soon have to gently
start to coax African governments to adopt more proactive and economic fiscal
processes. China will have to ensure that leaders whom it have signed mineral
agreements with stay in power. Maintaining China’s dominant position and over
all control; whilst freezing the West governments out of Africa.





China sees its current business relationship with Africa as strictly an
exchange of ideas and expertise in structural development as a pretext to
access and to precious minerals. China has to realise that most countries in
Africa are fragile states by definition and the condition that lead to their
fragility are still apparent. Poverty inequality and lack of good governance
are the solitary reason for conflict and instability. China’s current formula
of quiet diplomacy and neutral position on most sensitive matter relating to
the African continent can only be acceptable in the short term. This strategy
will become problematic in the medium to long term. When African government
change and new leaders adopt a negative stance to what had previously been
approved.






China’s legacy in Africa may
be kinder in its favour.



Less so for other industrialised
nations; whose influences have not always been in Africa’s best interest.
Western Aid models have increased government dependency levels to exceed 70 %
of national budgets. Where as poverty levels of 80% are far higher than it was
50 years ago.





China must be mindful that with great power comes great responsibility. China’s
human rights record has always been open to question. It remains to be seen how
if at all it can shrug off its appalling record and start to use it’s influence
and question African governments that fall short of international acceptable
standards. Chinese companies operating on the African continent have got to
ensure that they adhere to local and international working standards. There has
been unrest in both Ethiopia and Sudan where workers have demonstrated seeking
better standard of pay, personal conditions and above all safety levels of
working.

Sierra Leone, Ghana and Uganda are a growing
list of countries that have now joined the exclusive club of nations striking
it rich with off shore oil. Quantities found exceeding what Gadafi Libya
currently has in reserve. Provided these countries are managed properly, with a
constant supply of cash injection worth Billions. They do have the potential to
develop, evolve and transform beyond all recognition.



Civil Society responsibility is now paramount in calling for better
transparency. They must question the terms of China’s contractual arrangements
with respective governments. Whilst seeking better terms for workers and
greater accountability of government ministries.
...
Product Id: 100131
Posted By: Viewpointafrica Monitoring Team
Country: Kenya
Category: Politics
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