09/02/2013 to 15/02/2013

Top Stories:                                                                                                          

 Reflection of a Chinese Investor in Africa: Guest Post  – China in Africa: The Real Story

 The next frontier – The Economist (GBR)

 Should we view the mega Chinese-DRC project as “aid”?  – China in Africa: The Real Story

 In Africa, U.S. Businesses Are Losing Out to China – US News (USA)

 Botswana show impressive interest in Chinese – Mmegi Online (BWA)

Politics                                                                                                                 

The role of China on the African continent – Mmegi Online (BWA)
12/02/2013
The exponential rate of Chinese investment in Africa over the past few years has been noted with both optimism and scepticism by mainstream media, political commentators and influential role players in the developed and developing world.

Why is the government afraid of the Chinese? – GhanaWeb (GHN)
11/02/2013
We have had good cause to complain about inefficiency in the governance of this country over the years; and we will continue to do so until our leaders change for the better. We will not leave them to do things at their own pace, though.

Reflection of a Chinese Investor in Africa: Guest Post  – China in Africa: The Real Story
10/02/2013
This guest post by KF is reproduced with permission from the Comments section of my blog post, Nigerians Protest Conditions at Chinese Construction Project. I welcome other guest posts, particularly from Africans and Chinese with experience in the field.

Should we view the mega Chinese-DRC project as “aid”?  – China in Africa: The Real Story
08/02/2013
The finance does not qualify as ODA. The main reason is that although the finance was (supposed to be) extended by an official executive agency of the Chinese government, China Eximbank, it is not China Eximbank that agreed to change the interest rate. Rather, the implementing consortium of companies agreed that if the (variable) interest rate from China Exim Bank, which was set at LIBOR plus 100 basis points, rose above the rate of 4.4% where it was when the agreement was signed, they would pay the difference.

Finance and Banking                                                                                           

SA needs to benefit from China’s growth – Business Day (ZAF)
14/02/2013
IN 1793, Qing Emperor Qian Long wrote to King George III, “as your ambassador can see for himself, we possess all things. I set no value on objects strange or ingenious, and have no use for your country’s manufactures.”

Why people are rushing to invest in Africa – Global Post (USA)
13/02/2013
Amid all of the talk about India and China, one of the biggest potential growth markets in the world is in Africa. A resource boom has meant more investment, and the area is projected to grow rapidly for years to come.

China’s Positive Data Set To Benefit South Africa’s Dual Listed Companies – Ventures 
11/02/2013
South Africa’s dual-listed companies were poised for “decent real returns” as long as China continued to churn positive economic data, Business Day SA reported on Monday, citing leading analysts. South Africa’s biggest business daily said these analysts’ comments came as the JSE reached yet another milestone on Friday.

FDI flows hit US$4.9bn – GhanaWeb (GHN)
08/02/2013
Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into Ghana, based on the value of registered projects, was US$4.9billion in 2012, the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) said this week.

Mining and Metals                                                                                                

Gold miner Sibanye looks for Chinese investors and overseas assets – South China Morning Post (CHN)
12/02/2013
Sibanye Gold will seek Chinese investors and look to acquire other gold assets in South Africa, its chief executive said yesterday, on its first day as a listed company. Shares in Sibanye, a spin-off of two South African gold mines from world No 4 bullion producer Gold Fields, were trading at 13.61 rand yesterday, valuing the business at 10 billion rand (HK$8.73 billion).

Telecommunications                                                                                            

The next frontier – The Economist (GBR)
15/02/2013
MAMADOU NDIAYE grew up in Senegal. His parents were “not poor, but not rich”. He was fascinated by mathematics, which he studied at Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar and then taught for several years in Côte d’Ivoire, saving to pursue his dream of studying in America.

Conquering Africa One Device at a Time – Investing Daily
07/02/2013
Last week I wrote about Lenovo Group’s successful entry into the Chinese smartphone market. I posited that the company would have a relatively easy time breaking into Africa, given the prevalence of Chinese technology on the continent.

Trade                                                                                                                    

USA and Chinese Engagement in Africa: GAO Study  – China in Africa: The Real Story
13/02/2013
A team at the US Government Accountability Office (GAO) has just released a long-awaited study comparing US and Chinese export financing (and development finance more broadly) in Africa, based on detailed case studies of three countries, Angola, Kenya, and Ghana.

In Africa, U.S. Businesses Are Losing Out to China – US News (USA)
08/02/2013
I was recently asked by a news researcher to provide names of companies who have lost bids for African business to Chinese competition. The underlying concern is, why aren’t American businesses doing better in Africa, and does the future of business in Africa, now the world’s largest untapped market, belong to the Chinese, and if so, won’t Africa necessarily gravitate politically towards a Chinese sphere of influence?

Ecobank sees more benefits in China-Africa trade – FOCAC
08/02/2013
Pan-African commercial bank Ecobank Group is positioning itself to play a bigger role in facilitating the growing trade links between China and Africa, the head of the bank’s operations in Kenya said on Wednesday.

Transport and Infrastructure                                                                                 

Get a move on – The Economist
15/02/2013
UNLESS you take to the air or the high seas, the only reasonably safe passage from north Africa to the rest of the continent is a weekly ferry on a lake on the eastern edge of the Sahara. The few roads that cross the vast desert are either broken or infested with kidnappers. So every Monday morning a horde of turbaned migrants lines up at a concrete pier in the southern Egyptian city of Aswan on Lake Nasser, a dammed-up bit of the Nile, for the overnight journey of 500km (300-odd miles) to Wadi Halfa in northern Sudan.

Education                                                                                                             

Botswana show impressive interest in Chinese – Mmegi Online (BWA)
12/02/2013
The Chinese Director of Confucius Institute at University of Botswana (CIUB) Chen Zhilu says there is high demand for Chinese language lessons by scholars in Botswana. “Our intakes only takes two days to get full as people flock for the limited 80 spaces available,” said Zhilu.

Media                                                                                                                   

China’s Media Engagement in Ghana – Amb. David Shinn
11/02/2013
A recent academic article titled “Partner, Prototype or Persuader? China’s Renewed Media Engagement with Ghana” by Iginio Gagliardone, Nicole Stremlau and Daniel Nkrumah appeared in Communication, Politics & Culture.

Society                                                                                                                 

Chinese appetite for shark fin soup devastating Mozambique coastline – The Guardian (GBR)
14/02/2013
Standing among coconut and mango trees near the coast of Mozambique, Fernando Nhamussua carefully prepares shark meat for a family meal – and contemplates a basket with a profitable haul of four dried shark fins. “I want to sell them to the Chinese,” the 33-year-old admits with disarming candour, estimating that a kilogram’s worth will fetch around 5,000 meticals (£104). “We take them to town where there is a place for Chinese buyers. It’s good money.”

Tourism on a roll in Africa – China Daily (CHN)
08/02/2013
Growing Chinese tourist numbers give new impetus to industry growth, job creation
During the past 30 years tourism has been one of the fastest growing industries in Africa, so much so that it has become an important driver of economic growth and a key strategy for regional cooperation among African economies.