Briefing from ROAPE Volume 32 Number 104/5
Red Star, Black Gold
China's growing public presence in Africa, coming as it does against the backdrop of a sustained Western media campaign of 'shock and awe' at China's new-found power, raises important questions about the nature of this emerging relationship. Once an avowedly anti-imperialist force on the continent with aspirations to 'third world' leadership, Beijing's recent foray into Africa has been characterised by a singular focus on resource acquisition and commercial opportunism that seemingly belies the rhetoric of partnership. While increasingly necessary to the health of the Chinese economy, Africa occupies an important place in its global ambitions as well.