By Firoze Madatally Manji, Stephen Marks
A lot latest remark on China in Africa makes a speciality of the vested pursuits of the West whereas the voices of self sufficient African analysts and activists were misplaced. In a distinct choice of essays, the participants to this booklet current African social, ancient, and cross-continental views on chinese language involvement in Africa. members contain Ali Askouri, Horace Campbell, Michelle Chan-Fishel, Moreblessings Chidaushe, John Blessing Karumbidza, Daniel huge, Anabela Lemos, Firoze Manji, Stephen Marks, Ndubisi Obiorah, Kwesi Kwaa Prah, Daniel Ribeiro, and John Rocha.
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Unlike the Chinas and other major economies of this world that are backed up by strong political and economic clout, Africa’s ability and capacity for leverage is rather limited. There is also room for enhanced civil society cooperation across Africa. At present community participation in the exploitation and management of natural resources is rather limited. Where it happens, the conduct and practices employed by communities can sometimes be self-destructive, as with the garimpeiros20 in Angola or the rebels in the Niger Delta.
On a pessimistic note, the NEPAD framework extols the virtues of African self-reliance, ownership and leadership as well as good economic, political and corporate governance as the bedrock of its development agenda. The emergence of China as a key player in Africa could undermine the NEPAD vision since it could make African countries increasingly reliant on China rather than on their own domestic resources and the resourcefulness of their people. At present, China and not NEPAD or the domestic market is being seen as a more reliable source for resource mobilisation.
From these initial trading contacts and visits, some Chinese businesses, especially manufacturers and traders from Hong Kong and Taiwan, began to establish representative offices and trading outposts in African countries in the late 1970s and eventually began to invest in manufacturing and trading operations in Africa. By the 1980s, there was a noticeable increase in Chinese residents and Chinese-owned businesses in many African countries. The introduction by the US government of preferential textile quotas for Africa For many among Africa’s ruled who are physically and intellectually exhausted by two decades of economic ‘reform’ supposedly adopted by African government but driven by Western governments, donors and the IFIs, China represents hope that another world is possible in which bread comes before the freedom to vote.