The Financial Times takes a hard look ($) at China's drive for resources, markets and influence in Africa. China is a poised to grab an increasing share of all three.
...the continent is... benefiting from the rise in commodity prices driven by Chinese demand.
No wonder that
...the African view of China's fast—growing involvement has been overwhelmingly positive.
But there are other things which make China a natural player in Africa, displacing Europe and the west.
China is widely regarded as a model of modernisation, more responsive to African needs than western partners, able to build dams, roads and bridges more quickly and cheaply and providing consumer products better suited to African pockets.
The positive reception is more than matched by the eagerness of Chinese businesses to leap in.
As latecomers, Chinese companies have been willing to take risks that other investors have shunned and enter countries where others have held back....
In war—ruined Angola, the Chinese have leapt into one of the world's most inhospitable investment environments, offering a $2bn oil—backed credit at a time when western banks and international institutions have been cautious about lending. An agreement between Angola and the International Monetary Fund has been held up, largely because of IMF concerns about how the government manages its oil money. Similar misgivings have prevented the holding of an international donors' conference. 'The Chinese are offering the loan as an alternative to working with the IMF,' says Princeton Lyman, director of Africa policy studies at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington.
A geopolitical power challenge is underway by China in Africa. And it is succeeding.
Hat tip: Ed Lasky
Thomas Lifson 2 24 06