Is China good or bad for Africa?
October 29th, 2012
05:14 PM ET

Is China good or bad for Africa?

By Peter Eigen, Special to CNN

Editor’s note: Peter Eigen is a member of the Africa Progress Panel, chaired by Kofi Annan. He is the founder and chair of the Advisory Council, Transparency International, and chairman of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative. The views expressed are the author’s own.

China’s growing presence in Africa is one of the region’s biggest stories, but even seasoned analysts cannot decide whether this booming relationship is good or bad for Africa.

Critics say Chinese strategy is entirely self-promotional, aimed at maintaining access to Africa’s precious mineral resources even when that means propping up odious governments. China’s supporters say the Asian superpower is strictly neutral and business-oriented, preferring to generate economic growth not a dangerous dependency on aid.

China has certainly been contributing to Africa’s economic growth, both in terms of trade and with building infrastructure. All over the continent, it has built roads, railways, ports, airports, and more, filling a critical gap that western donors have been shy to provide and unblocking major bottlenecks to growth.

The rehabilitated 840-mile Benguela railway line, for example, now connects Angola’s Atlantic coast with the Democratic Republic of Congo and Zambia. And Chinese-financed roads have cut journey times from Ethiopia’s hinterland to the strategic port of Djibouti, facilitating livestock exports.

Meanwhile, bilateral trade between Africa and China continues to grow at an extraordinary pace, reaching $160 billion in 2011 from just $ 9 billion in 2000.

More from CNN: Is West losing out to China in Africa?

But some 90 percent of Sino-African trade is still based around natural resources – oil, ores, and minerals. And exports of natural resources by themselves do not help Africa to develop as we can see from the examples of Nigeria and Angola, Sub-Saharan Africa’s two largest oil exporters.

First, oil and mining are not labor intensive industries. So while natural resources may create impressive headline growth figures, they do not necessarily translate into widespread job creation.

Second, as we saw in the Netherlands in the 1960s and Norway today, large oil and mineral reserves can distort the local currency, pushing up prices of other exports, such as agricultural products, and making them much harder to sell overseas.

Third, without careful management, oil and mineral revenues have often fuelled corruption which has a severely negative impact on a country’s development. It’s notable, for example, that China is not yet one of the supporting countries for the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), an initiative to promote transparency and accountability in the governance of natural resources.

Away from the oil and mining industries, critics of China say they don’t see much evidence of China advocating for Africa on global issues either.

Climate change and better access to overseas markets are two such issues. But at the Africa Progress Panel we see little evidence of China pushing hard for improved market access for African products in non-African markets. Indeed, South African and other manufacturers have frequently complained about the crushing competition from Chinese textiles. Nor do we see China pushing for any meaningful breakthroughs in climate negotiations that would favor African nations.

More heavily publicized, Chinese use of its veto in the U.N. Security Council to inhibit international action on Darfur has made a mockery of China’s supposedly “neutral” stance.

So what else could Africa and China do so that Africa benefits more from its growing relationship with China?

For a start, African countries could diversify their economies as much as possible away from supplying unprocessed natural resources to China. This will make them less dependent on the vagaries of both the Chinese economy and the ups and downs of global commodity prices. Trade with China may have helped insulate Africa from the full impact of the 2008 financial crisis, but Africa still looks vulnerable to China’s economic slowdown. Meanwhile, African nations should also prepare for the day when they no longer have natural resources to sell. At the Africa Progress Panel, we talk about transforming natural resource wealth into human capital, by investing revenues into health and education.

Second, African countries need to encourage Chinese investment into more labor intensive sectors. Africa’s population is growing faster than anywhere else in the world, and job creation is a top priority. If Africa cannot create jobs to keep up with the growth of its workforce, then we can expect to see a large and growing population of frustrated, jobless youth.

As China’s relationship with Africa shifts from being essentially government-to-government to business-to-business, some analysts see enormous potential in the manufacturing industry, especially for clothing and textiles. Rising Chinese wages in this sector may lead Chinese manufacturers to export jobs to African countries where labor prices are lower.

One example of how this might work is Zambia, where some 300 Chinese companies now employ around 25,000 people. Ethiopia’s shoemaking sector has also benefitted from Chinese investment that has created jobs and exports.

For the most part, however, and despite the scale of investment, linkages between Chinese investment and local economies remains weak.

Third, African countries could negotiate better terms with Chinese investors, including quality control and better linkages with local economies. African governments could urge China to improve market access for African goods overseas, for example in trade fora such as the World Trade Organization. The IMF estimates the average import tariff faced by low-income countries in Africa in the BRICS at 13 percent – around three times the level in the United States and the European Union (which also operate a range of non-tariff barriers).

On quality, observers describe shoddy workmanship in a range of Chinese investments from crumbling walls in a Chinese-built hospital in Angola, enormous potholes in Ghanaian and Zambian roads, and a leaking roof in the African Union’s new $ 200 million headquarters opened in January.

Fairly or unfairly, many in Africa complain that Chinese projects do not employ enough Africans or do enough to transfer skills and technology. The reality is that this will vary from project to project. When a country is emerging from a decade or two of civil war, its labor force may not have sufficient capacity to work on technical projects. But at the Africa Progress Panel we view job creation as a priority issue for Africa’s development. Skills development has a major role to play in this respect.

And when Africans are employed, working conditions are sometimes substandard. Human Rights Watch reports dangerous work conditions in Zambian mines. And pay disputes at a copper mine also in Zambia led to two Chinese managers shooting at miners in 2010, then the death of a Chinese manager this August.

Fifth, Africa could keep working to make itself as attractive a business environment as possible. At the Africa Progress Panel, we consider further regional economic integration to be a priority. Africa’s population will one day represent the world’s largest consumer market. If they can get increased market access by investing in a single country, Chinese businesses will want to invest much more.

Analysts see more Chinese businesses coming to Africa, meaning that the Africa-China relationship is diversifying away from simply government-to-government relationships. This makes it harder to characterize the relationship as either good or bad. However we view it, China’s growing presence in Africa is part of a rapidly changing reality that presents enormous opportunity.

Post by:
Topics: Africa • China

soundoff (331 Responses)
  1. 100 % ETHIO

    Is China good for most African Countries?

    Sure. We are all watching the proof.

    Africa never asked to built NUCLEAR BOMB, nor any kinds of heavy weapons.

    Africa is the only Continent, that has all kinds of necessarily Natural resources. But, Africa does not have the challenged skills and creativity to use its hidden and visible resources, mindfully.

    Therefore, China filled-up those gaps, between the resources and the necessarily knowledges and skills, although American drones and Satellites keep scaring them and causes destructions on their daily activities, in Africa.

    In most Western Countries, Africans are discouraged not to take Courses and trainings, that are the most necessarily to use African natural resources. In some case, the courses are not available, purposely to make Africans remain uneducated.
    I witnessed TOTAL CONTROL against people from my background, here in America. These has been done, and still happening by local and foreign Agents, whose aims are to damaged the good brains of Africans, everywhere, mostly by using varies types of CHEMICAL AGENTS/MIND-CONTROLS.

    There are no questions about it.
    At the past in the early 1950's MK-ULTRA and LSD-D type, has been used against BSD (Black Slave Descendants).

    The very tragedy of life is, when the person(s) is dead in the head.

    From the early 1980's WHO (World Health Organisation) some run by cruel Jewish, sent poisonous foods to Ethiopia, that has been soaked by Uranium residues and other toxic chemicals.

    Better not to mention many Weapons that has been shipped to Africa, to murder fellow Africans.

    The former Slaves in Africa are the most who hate Westerners.

    October 29, 2012 at 6:30 pm | Reply
    • observer

      100% Chinese. China won't teach Africans anything. After learning everything they know about infrastructure from the west, legitimately or not, they don't want to share that with Africans. they want to keep Africans dependent on china. even indistinguishable on operating their power plants for them. lately the Chinese are exploiting white guilt over historical colonizations to hide their own colonizations which are no less exploit I've. This is typical of the Chinese ethics of diversion when confronted with embarrassment.

      October 30, 2012 at 12:39 am | Reply
      • j. von hettlingen

        What the Chinese are doing in Africa, is what the Europeans did before they were thrown out of the continent, when their former colonies gained independence. The Africans will no doubt one day throw the Chinese out. So, the Chinese would do the same as the Europeans in earlier day: to maximise the gains in Africa, while one's still there.

        October 30, 2012 at 6:00 am |
      • j. von hettlingen

        Forgot to mention: one of the few things the Chinese don't do, is to patrionise the Africans like many European colonialists and missionaries did.

        October 30, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
      • Katie

        At least the Chinese are not enslaving, killing and creating mass genocides in Africa, as the Europeans did and then pretending that they were trying to help the Africans. China is doing what any country with any wit and money does – exploit relationships with others to gain access to natural resources. At least they don't occupy the countries with troops and make up excuses for war, like the US does. That is why we are in such national debt.

        October 30, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
      • Damie305

        Hmmm Good Point! As an African it is indeed very concerning but the pattern according to the article of maintaining access to Africa’s precious mineral resources even when that means propping up odious governments sounds like business as usual to me. It is what every foreign power has done in Africa-Nothing New. The issue is not those coming to take what we have it is the terrible African leaders that gives its resources away without regard to citizens as long as they line their pockets.

        October 31, 2012 at 9:56 pm |
      • Wally Lee

        I hate Chinese ( Not honest in Business , trading and invaded small country in area Asaia , they mean.. )

        November 4, 2012 at 6:07 pm |
      • Asiano

        I agree, they will pay Africans' hard labor very minimal. The Chinese businessman is the most stingy of all. Let's wait and see how the Africans will realize that they are being used and abused.

        November 20, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
      • Aware African

        It is incredible to read and listen to western accusations being lobbed at China from every spectrum. In fact, the wars in D.R Congo are neocolonial-style proxie engagements stimulated and funded by western business. Most probably using South African front companies. After 600 years of western countries exploiting African countries, we are reading about western cocern that China is doing straight up no strings attached business in Africa. Let not the pot cal the kettle black. Lets face it this is all about western countries trying to protect their narket share. It has nothing to do about African countries.

        December 9, 2012 at 9:17 pm |
      • jay

        Thanks. China is just exploiting Africa. That's what's going on. Africa is being mugged. Africa has been looted for a very long time. China is no hero for Africans. China is in line with all the other gang rapist of Africa.

        January 7, 2013 at 1:02 pm |
      • Poltergiest

        Yeah sure, excluding the mass murders, slavery, and apartheid, they are just like everyone else.

        January 21, 2013 at 12:47 am |
      • TP

        Your statement China won't teach Africa anything is not apt. However minimal Africa is bound to learn at least from mere association from China.

        January 24, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
      • marc

        The chinese are don't anything like the Europeans before, pretty ignorant statement. Colonial powers obtained through force and prices weren't set by the market. With the chinese its negotiated and consensual, don't like it don't do it, unfortunately no one (esp westerners) offer better terms so its really pathetic.... westerners condemn but can't offer anything better, if anything the west has offered far worse for hundreds of years and for the first time in a long time there is hope for Africa.

        February 1, 2013 at 3:47 am |
    • 2Bob

      Yes, you so hated those terrible westerners you had to go and live with them. Pathetic.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:06 am | Reply
    • averagesitizan

      China has been building roads, bridges and railways for African for almost free as early as Obama's father was still herding goats in Kenya, in '50s.

      October 30, 2012 at 10:41 am | Reply
      • Weasel

        How else can they steal those resources.

        November 8, 2012 at 6:58 pm |
      • Eric Wan

        Compare to Westerner in colonized era, they stole and didn't leave any legacy except chaos and hatred, Chinese is much more better than Westerner. Even now, the massacre of Platinum mine labor in South Africa in few months, the white people owned mining company are free trial.

        January 23, 2013 at 1:32 pm |
    • Yang Zhou Lai

      Get China out of Africa tonight, before the sun rises if possible. Chinese are openly raping Africa's resources. Westerners were evil of course but at least Western ways are known. China's ways and methodologies are unknown (better the devil you know than one you don't know). Africa needs to think twice (or five times if necessary) before extending the hand of friendship to China.

      November 1, 2012 at 1:57 pm | Reply
      • Jack

        Shame on you and your family name which looks like a Chinese one.

        November 13, 2012 at 9:44 am |
      • Jack 3

        Jack...She's speaking the truth. You're obviousely not aware.

        December 3, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
      • justsayasis

        Probably, "it" looks and sounds like a human but actually really is just a "fake" one; a "monkey", indeed !

        December 30, 2012 at 6:23 am |
      • yzu

        at least china never transport slavery

        January 4, 2013 at 10:25 am |
      • Jack 3

        You do speak the truth. They are stripping the land and taking the natural recources killing elephants for Ivory

        January 17, 2013 at 11:53 am |
      • marc

        What you say may be true, but telling that to a western audience is absolutely pathetic. The west has exploited them far worse and now for the first time there is actually hope in Africa. Sure negotiate, but at least the chinese are negotiable, with the west is was be force or espionage.

        February 1, 2013 at 3:43 am |
      • luke

        I am not quite sure if they can "think". If they can, they are no more Africans long ago.

        March 11, 2013 at 12:54 am |
    • Jack 2

      Aware African... Yiou're not too aware and not very smart.

      January 17, 2013 at 12:00 pm | Reply
    • Jack 2

      Who owns the slaves in Mauritania? Black Muslim Africans. You're a liar and hypovrite. In America we don't hold blacks downthese days. we have many blacks in politics and and they have the same education opportunities as whites and maybe even more with the programs. take your propaganda and go back to Africa.

      January 17, 2013 at 12:16 pm | Reply
    • p,b.

      huh!!!

      January 24, 2013 at 11:04 pm | Reply
    • LT Fang

      China is doing what's best for China in the international stage.
      The US should follow suit.

      January 28, 2013 at 4:40 pm | Reply
    • Robert Han

      In reply to:

      j. von hettlingen
      Forgot to mention: one of the few things the Chinese don't do, is to patrionise the Africans like many European colonialists and missionaries did.

      October 30, 2012 at 1:39 pm |

      Like what, shipping the most physically gifted Africans back home to be their slaves?

      February 11, 2013 at 6:12 pm | Reply
    • anita

      Hi, i am a black Africa. no the white devils didn't do anything good in Africa. only causing war, stole African wealth etc. they brought in diseases to kill black populations. for a example of it diseases is Aids. now they are surprise to see that black population is the second largest in the world after Asia. why the white devil population is dying out around the world. white people are the most dangerous human beings in the world that's they evil deeds is befalling on them today. everyone around the world hate white people that,s when u hear killing around the world who is the victim white people. the name white means satanic. that's why white people behavior like Satan.

      February 14, 2013 at 7:41 am | Reply
      • Bnode

        Hey Anita ( ironically a European neme) you are a racist of the wost type.
        By the way Aids originated in Africa.

        March 8, 2013 at 2:50 pm |
  2. Joseph McCarthy

    Why would China be bad for Africa? This alone is a preposterous question. At least the Chinese didn't send agents into the Congo to overthrow Patrice Lumumba like we did in 1960 or anywhere else in Africa for that matter! We, along with the French and the British have done far more harm in Africa than either Russia or China! The defense rests!

    October 29, 2012 at 7:24 pm | Reply
    • zhenyi

      I agree with you。I am a chinese and now living in china,my twin sister now working in New zealand。I think some westerners are not know about the real china and our culture。Although we have some problems because china is a developing country,we have the largest population in the world。welcome to china and see the real china。中国人必将领导世界,但我们不会称霸世界。

      October 30, 2012 at 10:24 am | Reply
      • Aaron

        I am an American who is working in China for an international Hotel Chain. I fully agree with you that most Americans/Westerners don't understand the Chinese culture unless they are here experiencing and living it in person. Even as a foreigner working in a foreign land, I realize there are problems in this developing country, but there are problems in every country. Unfortunately due to poor coverage and propaganda fed by the West's biased media and governments, people will continue to have closed minds and not realize the opportunities China is offering other countries.

        October 31, 2012 at 12:03 am |
      • Weasel

        No, western nations do know about the Chinese and their culture. (A) Most westerners are well travelled; and (B) You are overpopulating most western nations so we know exactly what you have instore for Africa.

        November 8, 2012 at 7:00 pm |
      • Saint Ola

        If you really want to know how bad the Chinese people are, ask Vietnamese people.

        November 12, 2012 at 8:56 pm |
      • zhenyi

        I do not think "western nations do know about the Chinese and their culture"。A foreigner can konw about chinese culture more than ourselves,it is a big joke,I can't understand why some westerners think china is bad for Africa? We invest in Africa,we earn money by our hard working,meanwhile,african people can raising their living standards,in chinese this is called ”双赢“。
        I am proud of being a chinese,China has a long history and being the second largest economy in just few years。It is time for some westerners to learn from us,and accept the fact that China is becoming more and more stronger。

        November 13, 2012 at 9:00 am |
      • justsayasis

        @Saint Ola: If you really really want how bad the Vietnamese are just ask the Champa, Cambodian, etc. LOL. Everything in the world should be relatively viewed...However, it proves that your view may be one-sided view and are ignorant especially about the "real" history of the Viets.

        December 30, 2012 at 6:58 am |
      • Huang Hong

        Zhenyi, I like the way you place your point and I fully support. I am supprised to see that so many people here in the discussion are so bias and prejudiced.

        January 4, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
      • Java

        @Saint Ola . Today the majority of Vietnamese people are a mix race of Chinese and local stock. It take one to know one. Samo samo.

        January 13, 2013 at 2:42 am |
      • Jack 2

        Aarron, Yor drinkibg too much of their koolaid. Plus their internet is minitored so you couldn't speak against it and you're probably scared to so your post means nothing.

        January 17, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
      • Happyface

        @Weasle

        "You are overpopulating most western nations so we know exactly what you have instore for Africa."

        Sounds like you have an education of a 8 year old! "Most western nations" was overpopulated by the European colonisits that stole the land from the Native Americans!!

        March 14, 2013 at 6:03 pm |
    • Jack

      if you really want to know what a real thief Vietnamese is, ask Chinese people.

      November 13, 2012 at 9:50 am | Reply
      • kim

        We all know how bad Chinese people are so there's no need to ask anyone

        November 13, 2012 at 11:19 am |
      • kim

        China invade Tibet. Selling prisoners organs. Stealing technologies. Making faked, poison cheap products. Exploit Africa. Eating human soup. Claiming all islands in Asia belong to China and much, much more.

        November 13, 2012 at 11:24 am |
      • Tibet Ain't China

        How can you ask the Chinese when they themselves are the biggest thieves. They have been stealing and looting Tibet and the Tibetans since the 1950's and are still there. We Tibetans don't want the Chinese in Tibet ... Go back behind your so called 'great wall' and live under all the propaganda that your own government feeds your foolish heads. And leave the Vietnamese alone.

        November 26, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
      • Huang Hong

        Kim, I think you are living in your own world. Stop being so naive and do not fill your life with hatred.

        January 4, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
  3. JAL

    Good.

    October 29, 2012 at 8:20 pm | Reply
    • JAL

      Good partnerships will be the key.

      October 29, 2012 at 8:21 pm | Reply
    • CCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCP

      Hold these ugly red flags for a bowl of chicken rice? Sure!

      October 30, 2012 at 12:58 am | Reply
      • Endovelicous

        Explain to the ignorant mujique that I am, what CCCP have to do with China!!!!!

        October 30, 2012 at 11:50 am |
  4. Muin

    Obviously you know realities of Africa very well but Chinese do have some bias. In U.S,chinese owned businesses sponsor a Chinese who doesn't even know English over anyone. That's very well known. For Indians, you got to know some English if you are fresh off the boat in U.S from India. So it's not all qualification.

    October 29, 2012 at 9:34 pm | Reply
    • from_Microsoft

      You are biased. Indian companies in US in fact sponsored many Indians, who do not have the qualification, to come to US. There is still a large scale on-going investigation of a hundred Indian companies in this large scale scam.

      October 30, 2012 at 8:19 pm | Reply
      • Muin

        If you read my comment carefully, I don't disagree with you. Both Chinese and Indians prefer working with their own people specially to keep cost down. Fresh off the boat experienced workers from their own countries costs less than to hire Americans here. What I meant is that Indians would at least test worker's basic English but Chinese don't care at all. I can name dozen companies and you can find for yourselves Chinese workers who hardly speak English but were able to avail sponsorship.

        October 31, 2012 at 1:53 am |
      • hey

        Why india hate China so badly?

        December 3, 2012 at 4:10 am |
  5. AdayAday

    It's easy to find fault with anything, but let's stop for a second and ask a question: Has the West been good or bad for Africa in the last few hundred years? For example, when they were mining in Africa, did they pay Africans or build roads for them?

    October 29, 2012 at 10:22 pm | Reply
    • Weasel

      We aren't talking 100 years ago we are talking about today and the future.

      November 8, 2012 at 7:01 pm | Reply
      • hey

        why you afraid of facing the history?

        December 3, 2012 at 4:08 am |
    • geworker

      so what you are saying the western nations should not give an opinion because they themselves have a sketchy record in handling Africa? so if we see something wrong in life we are to first to look into our past record on the event before we can give our opinion on the matter not very progressive processes

      December 11, 2012 at 10:58 am | Reply
    • anita

      Hi, i am a black Africa. no the white devils didn't do anything good in Africa. only causing war, stole African wealth etc. they brought in diseases to kill black populations. for a example of it diseases is Aids. now they are surprise to see that black population is the second largest in the world after Asia. why the white devil population is dying out around the world. white people are the most dangerous human beings in the world that's they evil deeds is befalling on them today. everyone around the world hate white people that,s when u hear killing around the world who is the victim white people. the name white means satanic. that's why white people behavior like Satan.

      February 14, 2013 at 7:05 am | Reply
  6. Ombala

    China involvement in Africa has been good so far and well received, the Chinese pays market rate for the natural resources, they did not go in and grab the African land, colonise the countries there, make the people there as slaves and then steal all their natural resources and ship them back to their home countries. Instead, trade are based on commercial agreements, some countries are too poor to pay for infrastructure, so there is a barter system, China buys the natural resources upfront contract and in return, helps to pay for the natural resources by building much needed infrastructure like roads, rail, buildings, ports, hospitals, etc. This is definitely a win win situation, I hope the Western press will stop fuelling inaccurate stories of Chinese exploiting Africa, this is not true.

    October 30, 2012 at 12:10 am | Reply
    • Toto

      They dont grab land from Africa yet simply because they cant keep them. In Asia, the grab South China Sea and tiny islands from ASEAN countries where they can do it by force.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:51 am | Reply
    • eyica

      I agree with Ombala, the chinese are doing a very good job in africa. let us focus on arguments that matters to africa. the western world has lost it to china by outsourcing to china and by loosing africa to china. Hello western world afric is doing fine without you.

      November 15, 2012 at 2:27 pm | Reply
    • Huang Hong

      thumb up!

      January 4, 2013 at 3:16 pm | Reply
  7. Ibrahim

    NOT ONLY IN AFRICA BUT IN INDIAN OCEAN TOO!!!!! Now China is very much powerful in Sri Lanka and in Maldives too.. USA is only trying to get Middle East oil..

    October 30, 2012 at 12:26 am | Reply
  8. hank

    Africa is there.Stop whining and go there and invest yourselves.As some one ho had malaria whilst there, i can say whoever is there is also making huge sacrifcies.Cone on arm char bigots

    October 30, 2012 at 12:45 am | Reply
  9. averagesitizan

    Chinese investment began as early as the late '50s. China built road, bridges and railway for African countries,

    when Obama's father was still herding goats in Kenya.

    October 30, 2012 at 1:06 am | Reply
    • hey

      lol

      December 3, 2012 at 4:11 am | Reply
  10. vanauger

    Is china good or bad to africa? How bout the presence of white man in africa? i think they're worse. Chinese people don't send africans to china, they don't implement apartheid, and many other things..

    October 30, 2012 at 1:41 am | Reply
    • white man from South Africa

      hay , the Chinese is setting up a truck manufacturing plant here in my town creating jobs , by doing this they have created jobs , just like GM FORD and Volkswagen ,have done and continued to do in my country any investment is welcomed, you guys in the west preach a open market system , so why are you getting annoyed at china just doing what you guys have been doing for years and years , if you want to compete with china , invest in Africa this is were you will find the next big growth in the word cause we are starting from such a low platform

      October 30, 2012 at 4:18 am | Reply
      • techedadventures

        Thats very good to know. That kind of investment (manufacturing) is how China could really help. In the Congo(drc), they are building roads, but mainly so they can cut down the jungles and get lumber and other minerals.

        November 14, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
      • Lioness

        To: White man from South Africa.- Isn't it time for you to go back to Europe? Your people have exploited my homeland long enough. I'll be leaving the U.S. soon to return to "my" homeland, Africa, since the exile of my people because of the slave trade. I am not African American, I am African. I'm going home and you should, too. If you want to trade with Africa, then fine, but that's as far as it goes. I'm presently very familiar with China since I have a close friend from Tiawan 臺灣 or 台灣. She has her country and I will finally have mine.

        January 10, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
  11. MikeV

    China are the new colonialists in Africa and Africa has not learned the last time round. African "leaders" are greedy and do not hesitate to steal from their own people. Here's some mining rights in exchange for a shopping trip to China – look at Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe.
    I travel all over Africa and see this all the time. China ships short term criminals to Africa to build roads and then leave them there after the project to open shops and sell cheap Chinese plastic buckets to the locals.
    Uganda: New road into Kampala build by China with Chinese labour and every last bit of construction material imported from China.
    Angola: Heavy earth moving equipment imported. Good deal it comes with a Chinese drive, co-driver and their families. The streets in Luanda now has Chinese characters – there are so many Chinese in Angola.
    Nigeria: China has access to oil. Their area is a piece of China within Nigeria.
    Zimbabwe: China is growing out of season crops for export to China. The locals are dying of hunger.
    Zambia copper belt: Chinese mine owners pay their workers sub-minimum wages and then kill them when they strike.
    All over Africa: 100 meters after the road ends a little shop selling Chinese goods. At every traffic light or street corner locals selling counterfeit goods (CD's DVD's, Sunglasses, Clothing) with support of the Chinese trade mission.
    Is China good or bad for Africa?
    China will suck Africa dry and the Africans will become the slaves of China.,, and Africa will still blame the West.
    Mark my words

    October 30, 2012 at 2:23 am | Reply
    • Anti_Ignorants

      ^ You need to learn history, African history before making such an ignorant statement. The colonialist have always been the European Americans.... There was even an article on CNN that practically claiming Africa was theirs!!! FAILED EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM!

      October 30, 2012 at 12:38 pm | Reply
    • Weasel

      Exactly what is happening. Well said.

      November 8, 2012 at 7:04 pm | Reply
      • LOL!

        America and European powers had there chances with africans/blacks and failed unto this day! Now America and European nations will have to go to war with China soon because they know, who control the resources on the Africa continent controls the world. The kings of Egypt control the world for thousands of years because they had minerals, animals, oil and bodies for war. That material pit is bottomless, it will always be! God don't like sneaky ugly heartedness, he is pulling the people of the greek bloodline off the top because you will not stop being selfish. Black people in the world trusted loved and admired you, but what did you do? Hurt! Sad to say, but Africans wil help Chinese fight you to pull the control of world to China because then blacks will be not left behind anymore. Chinese will grant them number two positioning in world order for many reasons; one: my partner in war or business. It only takes a few generations to re-teach, re-learn, re-believe, re-establish, and re-love. Someone that loved you so much, but you didn't notice. I think because you think you're so cute...you never knew! The government called a sequester to allot monies in the pacific realm to deal with the rising sun not far off. Western powers and America are setting up to enstall a black man as pope to move the people of the african continent in there favor, but God's will, is his will. God isn't going to let you persecute his children anymore.

        March 3, 2013 at 6:31 pm |
  12. nanana

    too early to tell... but what happens when Africa's land is devastated and poisoned? we may say that the west did not help africa grow economically, instead they only sent some food aids. and china built mediocre roads and establishments and created "some jobs" and "some profit" at the expense of their environment and natural resources...

    October 30, 2012 at 2:40 am | Reply
  13. Begashaw

    An African girl married a Chines man and give birth to a baby boy. After two months, the child passed away and the mother of the girld said that "every thing produced or made by Chines will not long last" as presented in the article of Peter Eign such as the hospital in Angola, the roads in Zambia and the roof of African Union Head Quarter in Ethiopia.

    October 30, 2012 at 2:54 am | Reply
    • Anti_Ignorants

      ^ Disgusting troll.

      October 30, 2012 at 12:39 pm | Reply
    • Lucifer

      There are plenty of half breeds in south Africa from white invaders raping local blacks during apartheid that make this white lie a myth. In south Africa they are called coloureds who are generally gangsters,druggies,alcoholics,spousal users and treated as third class citizens. EU men and paedophiles love to visit south Africa to exploit local coloureds like they do in Vietnam..

      October 30, 2012 at 3:14 pm | Reply
    • hey

      That's why AIDS is a big issue in china. Spreading from Africa

      December 3, 2012 at 4:14 am | Reply
    • LOL!

      That was evil! But let me tell you someone. In Israel long time ago the evil King Ahab wanted to war for profit and he asked his brother the king of judah, King Jehohaphat; "will you go with me?" King Jehohaphat reply, "your wifes are my wifes, your children my children." So the Chinese are also planning ahead, be forespoken: Africa, your wifes are my wifes; your children my children. Jehohaphat loves Israel, his family so he went even knowing in his heart Ahab was wrong and God....... Chinese will tell Africans with chinese origins your blood is my blood; my brother!

      March 3, 2013 at 7:00 pm | Reply
  14. Jimmy

    If you really care about Afica, go on and do something for them, send them the remaining of your meal in stead of throwing it away. Sitting in the office and find something in chinese 's actions in Afica to criticize is so hypocritical. At least, China has spent time with Afica and it helps that land not be forgotten by the rest of the world.

    October 30, 2012 at 4:46 am | Reply
    • from_Kenya

      Chinese were good people. They treated us equal. They built many roads, railway, school here. They did this back in mid-1950s. Obama's father saw this when he was still in Kenya. Before he went to Hawaii.

      Chinese did not make us slave like Europeans.

      October 30, 2012 at 8:16 pm | Reply
      • Tibet Ain't China

        you probably are a chinese writing this 'from kenya'.
        China is NOT good for Africa ..PERIOD! They promised Tibet so many things and look what they have done after 60 years. They killed 1.5 million Tibetans .. 1/6th of the entire population. They stole from Tibetan households, They built roads and rails to take minerals and out of Tibet and resettled so many HAN Chinese in Tibet. We Tibetans are already outnumbered in Tibet. There are more Chinese in Tibet than Tibetans. Time to be reincarnated on another planet. More than 81 Tibetans self immolated themselves sine 2009 .. GOOD LUCK AFRICA!

        November 26, 2012 at 10:05 pm |
  15. Forreal

    Here's a novel idea. Countries around the world take responsibility for themselves instead of pointing fingers at other nations. Somehow by diverting attention from their own evils t someone elses it makes their abuses seem acceptable. I only hit you 8 times and not 10 like that other guy. How is this going to affect the world in a positive way? Rather than learn from the past, they'd just like to show how they are being somewhat slightly less horrible by recounting an ugly history. It's disgusting.

    October 30, 2012 at 5:03 am | Reply
    • Endovelicous

      For unreal, you don't know. China is giving money to the corrupt governments of Africa, ALL of them. They are not creating nothing, no jobs and no infrastructure. The factories are operated by chinese. The roads and other infrastructure they "give" it's like the products they export: good for trash. So, what is so good about China in Africa?

      October 30, 2012 at 11:55 am | Reply
  16. max lee

    before chinese went africa, a pair of socks imported from western world cost 6 usd, and most of the local people are bare foot. but now most of them can afford clothing. talking about making a difference!!! what have you done? talking about sucking oil from africa, what's the biggest oil company in nigeria? is it a chinese company? dont even mention middle east.

    October 30, 2012 at 5:03 am | Reply
  17. Dex

    Sadly the rise of China's economic involvement in Africa has gone hand-in-hand with the mass destruction of Africa's elephants and rhino's. In 2007, 13 rhino's were poached in South Africa, since 2008 it is well over 1400, this year alone standing at 460. Last week the largest seizure of elephant tusks took place in Hong Kong, a massive 3.81
    tonnes. Ivory and rhino horn is predominantly used in China and Vietnam. Rhino horn is pure keratin, has no medicinal values whatsoever. The killing of Africa's elephants continue at an alarming rate of between 25000 -50 000 per annum. It will be a great accomplishment for the Chinese government if they repatriated some funds back into Africa's conservation and did far more to curb trade in endangered species. Wouldn't it be great if China financed training and job creation for game wardens/rangers across the African continent that could help in conservation.

    October 30, 2012 at 5:06 am | Reply
    • South African

      Very true.

      October 31, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Reply
    • the truth

      are white people going to give africa reparations for enslaving people?

      November 3, 2012 at 3:35 am | Reply
      • Jack 2

        To you people who speak of slavery. Do you know that in Mauritania Afirca that 10 to 20 percent are in slavery. it was outlawed only in 2007 and only one case has been procecuted. This muslim nation still practices slavery.

        January 17, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
      • Bnode

        Sure
        The whites who actually had slaves can pay reparations.
        Oh yeah, they are all long dead.
        Or are you proposing that whites alive now, who never ahd slaves should be held accountable?
        If so then you would greatly benefit from some critical thinkinc courses.

        March 8, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
    • txwiseman

      You are absolutely correct. In 15 years time, the only place you will be able to see the elephants, rhinos will be in zoos, because of the demand for animal parts in china.

      November 4, 2012 at 9:01 pm | Reply
    • toobabindakar

      The demand for shark fin soup which is considered a delicacy in china, has left the shark population decimated around Africa. A bowl of this soup can fetch upwards of $100 usd, meanwhile the fishermen who practice this trade, which is spurred on by Chinese demand, cant even afford a small bowl of the soup that their efforts provide. I know this article is not so much about poaching but more so about a philosophical question, but with the rapidly declining populations of Ivory bearing animals as well as sharks, it stands to reason that there is a "raping" of resources happening and their final destination seems to be the far east.

      November 25, 2012 at 7:33 pm | Reply
    • Antonio

      The Asian demand for ivory and rhino horns is mainly from Vietnam. China, as well as other East Asia countries, is not a big part of it.

      January 28, 2013 at 2:40 pm | Reply
  18. sunshine

    stupid western in africa,let them go and live chinese people alone

    October 30, 2012 at 5:46 am | Reply
  19. Cygnett

    Good for Africa. Bad for America and Europe. Unlike the Americans and Europeans who arrived in Africa with guns and bombs blazing, China came with machinery and know-how to help build the much needed infrastructure. Of course, there are trade-offs for China too – nothing is free these days. But at least Africa will end up with some good infrastructure and a helping hand for development – not bombed out buildings and plutonium residues left by the West.

    October 30, 2012 at 5:51 am | Reply
  20. owoahene

    China in Africa is good. The west is now not happy why china should build road and schools for us. the west are now living with their selfish interest in Africa, why long time west did not come and propagate is the WEST or US good for Africa.

    Africa is never poor nor luck of ffod. it is as results of bulying from the west. A small continenet having 60% of world resourses, how could it be poor if the west have trade with us Fairly.
    China is now building roads, schools, hospitals and many more and does not intefer in our politics, so the west has open their ugly mouth again.

    Long life Africans and long life China

    October 30, 2012 at 5:56 am | Reply
  21. china

    I love china

    October 30, 2012 at 6:46 am | Reply
    • Jack 2

      Good! Now stay there.

      January 17, 2013 at 12:41 pm | Reply
      • LOL!

        Jack2, I think you don't know right from wrong; no it's pride! Two things you should never do; side with theives who don't even think about sharing with you and two; let race cloud your thinking. I forgive you because alot of people in the world don't understand how to truly love as Christ loved.... being unloved!

        March 3, 2013 at 7:25 pm |
  22. panda

    You can ask North Koreans for the answer

    October 30, 2012 at 6:59 am | Reply
  23. /etc

    can't never surpass what the european have done to them.

    October 30, 2012 at 7:14 am | Reply
  24. Abyssinia

    I'm laughing at how jealous westerners are of how China and Africa are working together and engaging in fair deals. It's like an abusive boyfriend that keeps stalking his ex when she finds a new boyfriend.

    October 30, 2012 at 7:28 am | Reply
    • justsayasis

      Exactly. precisely, neat and 1000% true!

      December 30, 2012 at 9:52 am | Reply
    • Huang Hong

      Thumb up

      January 4, 2013 at 3:25 pm | Reply
    • Jack 2

      In your dreams...We are jusr aware of what is really going on there. Look what they did inTibet...past actions speak loud and clear.

      January 17, 2013 at 12:43 pm | Reply
  25. Pedro Patrício

    This news loses credibility when Angola was pointed as a sub-saharan country...

    October 30, 2012 at 7:50 am | Reply
    • unak78

      Angola is a Sub-Saharan country. Are you thinking of Algeria??

      July 1, 2013 at 2:55 am | Reply
  26. NOT RIGHT

    but one thing can be proved, China is doing something for Africa, but Europe was not

    October 30, 2012 at 7:56 am | Reply
  27. zako

    Other countries are not good or bad for Africa. the only thing good or bad for Africa is thier leadership..... the responsibility for Afrika lies squarely on Africans. Stop having unnecessary issues with europeans, chinese or africans. countries dont have friends what they do have is common interesest

    October 30, 2012 at 7:57 am | Reply
    • South African

      Wow! At last, someone who puts the whole thing into perspective. Yes, the fate of African countries lies with it's leaders. However, in many cases those leaders are elected by the people. And in many cases those leaders are self serving, greedy despots who will sell out their people to whoever makes the best offer. So maybe it's time for Africa to look to its people for growth. What's the point of changing ones dependance from the west to the east? A truly independant Africa should not need to be "helped" by any outside agency. Get the leadership right and the continent will flourish.

      November 21, 2012 at 5:43 am | Reply
    • Bnode

      An intelligent assesment indeed.

      March 8, 2013 at 3:12 pm | Reply
  28. jesus

    The question should be has the western world been good or bad for africa and the world?
    The question then should be is the western world good or bad for africa and the world ?
    The third question is then has the western world recognised and apologised for slavery and for present day modern slavery it enriches itself from the developing countries.?
    The fourth question is has the western world become richer and richer despite the recession?.
    The fifth question is the last 200 years has the wealth amassed in the west been ethical?
    The sixth question is how high is the unemployment in the west compared to the rest of the world?
    The seventh question is how many western military bases are located on foreign soil?
    The eight question is who has truthfully exploited the resources of the world using the military ?
    The nineth question is which western country is not motivated by money and materialism?

    WE SHOULD BE EXTREMELY,EXTREMELY WORRIED OF THE WESTERN WORLD

    October 30, 2012 at 7:59 am | Reply
    • aftabshah

      The Tenth question should be, should the people who looted all the wealth from colonies return it !

      October 30, 2012 at 8:31 am | Reply
      • jesus

        Yes,a westerner's wealth is on average 100 to 10000+ more than any other person on the planet.
        Westerners form a minority in the world.....completely unbalanced.
        There would be no excuse at all for them to return this stolen wealth and restore the damage they have caused.

        October 30, 2012 at 8:48 am |
    • Trauma

      You want to know if China is good or bad for Africa my answer to that question would be ask Africa.

      This conversation propagates nothing more than fear mongering and bitter sentiments.

      As long as there is a quest for wealth globally- someone or some country will always get the short end of the proverbial stick. That is economics 101 not everyone can be wealthy, and as long as people WANT/NEED for survival whether they be Chinese, western, Europeans etc there will always exist the push to acquire it.

      November 16, 2012 at 6:33 pm | Reply
  29. Marco Hsiao

    [Respect and friendship between Africa and China]

    From Great Emperor Yongle of the Ming Dynasty to ROC and PRC, the relation between Africa and China always base on friendship and respect.

    ROC had assisted India's independence from the immoral British. PRC and ROC both also assist Africa to get freedom and human dignity from immoral European countries.

    The immoral European countries have made 25 million African black slaves and tortured 8 million to die in Europe's ships. Then the Europe also invaded Africa brutally to steal resources, the victims include Obama's grandfather in Kenya's jail. (Before 1861 the US is largest immoral African black slave country.) But the apology and compensation both have not done, where is the justice?

    October 30, 2012 at 8:01 am | Reply
    • jesus

      The figure was 65million black slaves were stolen from AFRICA and half were thrown overboard the cargo ships.
      The rest were used to enrich and build the infrastructure of the western countries.
      The largest mass exploitation of resources still continues abate by western countries.

      October 30, 2012 at 8:22 am | Reply
      • YoYoString

        Lets not forget who build the railway in North America under slave conditions. Hundreds of thousand were promised high wages and better lives in the East, only to become slaves

        November 3, 2012 at 10:12 pm |
      • Jack 2

        To you people who speak of slavery. Do you know that in Mauritania Afirca that 10 to 20 percent are in slavery. it was outlawed only in 2007 and only one case has been procecuted. This muslim nation still practices slavery.

        January 17, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
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