China, Africa ties remain ties remain

By Wang Jiamei Source:Global Times Published: 2020/4/16 21:33:40

Western-led attempt to drive wedge between China & Africa full of ill-intentions

Editor's note

The BRIreview, a new column written by GT reporters, focuses on the development of the Belt and Road Initiative in countries and regions that have cooperation with China.

Two Chinese employees work along the Addisababa Djibouti Railway in 2016 in Ethiopia. Photo: IC

Some Western forces never get tired of exploiting every opportunity to fuel so-called China-Africa tension as the world is grappling with the coronavirus pandemic. 

Media outlets in the West have hyped up how African economies suffer as a result of the epidemic outbreak, suggesting that African countries should look for alternative trading partners and sources of financing other than China. While it is true that there is a decline in bilateral China-Africa trade due to decreased demand for African mineral imports during the first quarter, it is completely much ado to be rather picky regarding certain temporary trade fluctuations at a time when demand for global commodities have been suppressed by the pandemic.

Moreover, reports of alleged forced testing, quarantine and maltreatment of African nationals in Guangzhou, South China's Guangdong Province, have been maliciously elevated to the level of racial discrimination, diverting public attention from the top priority of combating the common enemy, the virus. To be clear, China's strict anti-viral measures have been applied to all people, foreigners and Chinese citizens, within its borders.

It is not the first time that some Western forces have no scruples about sowing discord between China and the African continent. But there is no way that African people can let such malicious remarks shake China-Africa relations, which are based on close economic cooperation between the two sides. China is one of the most important markets for African products, while Africa is crucial for the Chinese-proposed Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

As China's cooperation with Africa has deepened in recent years, the West has also turned their interest to the continent while criticizing Chinese assistance and investment in Africa from purely ideological perspectives. If anything, the hysteria regarding closer China-Africa ties underlines their mentality of geopolitical competition.

Such geopolitical aims of driving a wedge between China and Africa serves no interest for the two sides at all. History has already shown that diversified cooperation with the outside world is beneficial to Africa's economic development. Indeed, the West has also had a long history of offering assistance to Africa, but it is only until recently that they have started to really see Africa as an investment destination. In the meantime, China has invested heavily in local infrastructure projects under the BRI program to help African countries lay a solid foundation for supporting their economic growth.

As an old saying goes, don't put all your eggs in one basket, the same philosophy also applies to Africa when it comes to global cooperation. In any case, there is no denying China is an indispensable and credible partner to Africa given its past performance.

At present, the coronavirus pandemic is still haunting the global economy, and no one knows what the world will look like afterwards in terms of economy and geopolitics. Africa needs to think about how to gain a better position for itself in the future.

The author is a reporter with the Global Times.

Posted in: GT VOICE

blog comments powered by Disqus