Varsity Don: Africa’s Ties with China Stronger over the Years

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A Professor with Ted Rogers School of Management, Ryerson University Canada, Kenneth Kalu, has stated that ties between Africa and China has become stronger over the years, stressing that the Asian giant has come to stay in the continent.

In a chat with Steve Paikin on TVO’s documentary series recently, tagged: ‘China: Here and Now’ he said China has come to stay because their ‘patient’ money can clearly be differentiated from ‘hot’ money.

Kalu, who is the author of the groundbreaking book ‘Foreign Aid and the Future of Africa’, noted that hot money means, bringing money from New York sometimes London and putting it in Africa’s stock market such that when there are little crises, the monies are withdrawn.

“But China is investing in the long term (patient money), by building industries and other infrastructure. China has made Africa one of the top priorities of its foreign policy. China has invested across several sectors. If you look at Africa’s economy the biggest constraints to its economic progress has been infrastructure, lack of roads, railways and poor electricity supply.

“But recently in Africa of today, China’s presence can be felt across these sectors. China is also developing special economic zones which are geographical areas set aside for infrastructure to support companies which are willing to invest in African countries.”

On why economic zones are special, he said they have duty waivers and that they have already developed structures, so they don’t get bugged by the poor public utility.

“Despite the contributions of China to economic developments in the continent, some countries are still suspicious of China and view its growing interest in the continent as negative,” he added.