Many African governments have expressed their support for the so-called Chinese model which they regard as being more rooted in partnership than in the traditional donor-beneficiary relationship that characterizes foreign assistance from the West. However, critics have warned that China's engagement reeks of "neo-colonialism" and have denounced China’s poor record of human rights and environmental protection.
Despite the increased economic engagement between China and African governments, the level of dialogue at the grassroots and amongst citizens has been at a minimum. Chinese and Africans regard each another with curiosity, anticipation, and some would say, skepticism. This lack of interaction and understanding has spurred a number of violent incidents between the two communities in African countries like Zambia and, more recently, in Ghana where over 100 Chinese nationals involved in illegal mining were arrested.
- What’s the history behind China-Africa relations and how is the current engagement being approached by both parties?
- What do African and Chinese citizens think about China’s increased engagement on the continent?
- How can dialogue and mutual understanding be fostered between Chinese and Africans?
- Is the media painting a balanced and accurate picture of China-Africa relations? Is it overly optimistic?
- What are some of the opportunities and challenges with China-Africa relations and how can the relationship be enhanced for mutual benefit?
- Should development & poverty reduction be the cornerstones of China-Africa relations?
I recommend following their Twiiter accounts/websites for updates on China-Africa relations.
Kwabena Akuamoah-Boateng (Ghana) – Blogger and specialist in Sino-Africa socio-economic relations. Twitter: @Kwabena. URL:http://kwabena.me
Jinghao Lu (China, South Africa) – Researcher, China-Africa Analyst working in South Africa. Twitter:@JinghaoLu . URL: http://china-africa-jinghao.blogspot.com
Winslow Robertson (US) – Historian, specialist in Sino-Africa relations, founder of Sino-Africa DC group. Twitter:@Winslow_R. URL: http://cowriesrice.blogspot.com
Nkemijika E. Kalu (Nigeria) – Ph.D at , researcher and specialist on African agency and motivations in engaging with China.
Kobbie Boafo-Nartey (Ghana) – DJ/Photographer, start up entrepreneur, Concept developer for infrastructure & trade in Africa. Twitter:@djkobbie URL: bbi-ghana.com
Alexander Demissie (Ethiopia) – PHD Candidate on China-Ethiopia Relations, Co-Founder of ChinaAfricaBlog.com, Twitter:@chinaafricablog
Hongxiang Huang (China) – Freelance Journalist focused on Chinese investment in South America & Africa, Founder, China-South Dialogue. URL: chinagoingout.org
Jemila Abdulai (Ghana) – Blogger & Online Journalist, Communications & International Development specialist focused on Africa .Twitter:@jabdulai URL: Circumspecte.com