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China’s Ventures in Africa
African Security Review (2008)
  • Emmanuel Kwesi Aning
  • Delphine Lecroute
In this paper, we are guided by several questions of which the critical one is whether Sino-African relations are merely opportunistic and based on an ad hoc momentum, or whether they reflect a real strategy based on presence and territorial domination in the new context of competition and cooperation on the reconfigured African continent. We argue that any endeavour to appreciate the complexities of this relationship needs a more nuanced and differentiated appreciation and understanding of Sino-African relations. Such an approach will elucidate the complex relationship between Africa and China and, more importantly, emphasise the delicate nuances that are overlooked in the public discourse. To aptly capture what we see as the hidden subtleties of the relationship, this paper traces the changing nature of China’s ventures into Africa by looking beyond the image of the ‘energy grabbing’ dragon, which is how China is usually portrayed. We evaluate China’s increasing influence on African security issues, particularly in Sudan, but more importantly we paint a picture of this relationship that shows that the China equation in Africa has opened new avenues of flexibility and manoeuvrability for African states previously squeezed into a tight spot by Western financial interests and conditions and left emasculated and open to the subtle overtures of an emergent China.
  • Africa,
  • China,
  • international relations,
  • economic development
Publication Date
Citation Information
Emmanuel Kwesi Aning and Delphine Lecroute. "China’s Ventures in Africa" African Security Review Vol. 17 Iss. 1 (2008)
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