The Centre for Chinese Studies (CCS) at Stellenbosch University is the leading African research institution for innovative and policy relevant analysis of the relations between China and Africa.
The recent outbreak of the Ebola virus in the West African countries of Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone has been met with a high profile Chinese response. Not only have they pledged US$ 5 million worth of medical supplies but have also sent in several Chinese medical teams to affected areas. To further dramatize China’s commitment, this medical team was being sent in while similar such teams from the United States of America and Japan were being evacuated. Chinese official media have not shied away from playing up this intervention, with articles on China’s assistance to affected countries dominating state-media headlines for several consecutive days. This response is informative of a shifting Chinese domestic and foreign policy on a number of levels. At a domestic level, it signals a shift toward a more humanitarian focused China – something which has not traditionally held sway. In terms of realpolitik, this signals China using international crises intervention as a way of competing with traditional western powers as champions of humanitarian intervention. Furthermore, with Asia being a hot-spot for potential pandemics, from swine flu to SARS, tackling the Ebola virus head on in Africa may be an indirect attempt at ensuring domestic health security. [Continue reading]
Chinese involvement in the Senegalese peanut trade: threat to local markets and processing industries?
To deal with household socio-economic difficulties in rural areas in Senegal, peanut cultivation was introduced by French colonial powers at the beginning of the 20th century. The cultivation was to enable Senegal’s domestic agricultural economy to generate revenues and contribute to the development of its agro-processing industries. Over the years, it has become a source of revenue for many families living within the groundnut basins across the country as well as being an important resource for peanut processing industries. In 2010, the liberalisation of the peanut trade in Senegal enabled Senegalese peanut farmers and producers to directly sell to foreign buyers; including the Chinese. [Continue reading]
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The Centre for Chinese Studies, Stellenbosch/South Africa
Conference Announcement – Call for Papers
African-Asian Encounters (II) Re-Thinking African-Asian Relationships: Changing Realities – New Concepts
24 - 26 March 2015
Stellenbosch, South Africa
CCS in the Media
26 August 2014
Yejoo Kim, Research Analyst at the Centre for Chinese Studies, discusses Mugabe’s recent moves to securing Chinese economic support for the Zimbabwean economy. According to Kim, the Zimbabwe-China friendship is not new – Mugabe sought support from China during Zimbabwe’s independence struggle in the late 1970s. “Actually”, she continues, “this is not the first time for Mugabe to visit China. As we all know, Zimbabwe not invited to attend the U.S. this year, in August. So even before the U.S. and the EU imposed sanctions against Mugabe, he had developed a ‘look east’ policy.” [Read full article here]