China and US Trade in Africa
South Africa's President Jacob Zuma (R) is introduced to the Chinese delegation by China's President Xi Jinping (C) during a working visit to South Africa, in Pretoria March 26, 2013. WASHINGTON, DC — China first visited Africa in the eighth century, but it was only about 30 years ago that the country began engaging the continent economically and politically in any significant way. Since then, many Western critics have labeled Chinese commercial efforts in Africa “exploitative” and harmful to democracy and human rights.” The Chinese say they simply buy African raw materials and provide infrastructure and other assistance with “no strings attached,” leaving Africans to manage their own affairs. But is Chinese investment in Africa really so different from Western, particularly American, investment?
China is often criticized because virtually all of its imports from Africa consist of oil and minerals. South Africa’s representative to the U.S., Ambassador Ebrahim Rasool, says 80% of South African exports to China are raw materials. Quoting South African President Jacob Zuma’s conversation with (then) Chinese President Hu Jintao at the BRICS summit in South Africa in March this year, Amb. Rasool said over the long term, such trade is “unsustainable.” However, he said, in the short term it is providing Africa with much needed capital.... Read the full, comprehensive news article and discuss at Voice of America - Zimbabwe