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.
Shinzo Abe, Japan’s Prime Minister, recently visited Ethiopia, Mozambique and Cote D’Ivoire as part of his Middle East-Africa tour (Mr Abe also visited Oman). His trip prompted a flurry of media reports and academic analyses outlining how tensions between Japan and China were spilling over into Africa and that the continent is now at the centre of a geo-political tug-of-war between the East-Asian powers. This is very lazy analysis. It is reflective of a Cold War mind-set which sees Africa, not as a collection of independent states with their own agendas, but as a proxy battleground for the world’s larger economies to act out their rivalries. For African nations, international competition for natural resources and geo-political influence is, by and large, a good thing. [Continue reading]
The annual report of the Centre for Chinese Studies, China Africa Relations 2013, highlights the development of China-Africa relations including changes and achievements of the Centre during 2013. This annual report is a palette of key events and developments in China-Africa relations in 2013 and the CCS activities on and around these developments.
Looking back at the year at times reveals common themes across our varied research strands. In 2013, one of the overarching features in our research was exploring the diversity of China. This annual report contains pictures of various parts of China—and it hopefully includes a few surprising or unusual images . We study China in all its parts, and while we often focus on the political and economic core in Beijing and Shanghai, we also explore Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan and Western China. [Download CCS Annual Report: China Africa Relations 2013 here]
Research Report: South African relations with China and Taiwan Economic realism and the “One-China” doctrine
Since 2009, China is South Africa’s largest bilateral trade partner with political relations between Beijing and Pretoria deepening in recent years. The Chinese government position claims it is a ‘win-win’ situation, but is South Africa maximizing its benefits in the relationship? The research report situated the current relationship within the broader context of South Africa’s foreign and economic policies toward China (the Mainland, Taiwan and Hong Kong) as well as identifying challenges and opportunities marking the engagement. The launch of the report in Cape Town (21 February) invited debate and reflection on the current and future state of South Africa-China relations.
This project was financially supported by the South African Foreign Policy Initiative (SAFPI) of the Open Society Foundation (OSF) for South Africa.
CCS in the Media
“Chinese investment in Africa increasingly carried out by private companies and focused on local production” – Macauhub
The new wave of Chinese investment in Africa is increasingly carried out by private companies rather than state companies as was the case initially. CCS Research Fellow Daouda Cissé and Research Analyst Yejoo Kim are quoted as saying that “China’s need for raw materials will continue to make Africa [...] [important] on the Chinese agenda for foreign investment,” with a growing role by private players. They continue that, “demand for foreign business opportunities, in relation to growth markets and testing the companies’ skills to operate in a foreign environment leads Chinese companies to operate in Africa”. [Read full article here]