November 7, 2006
Written by C.N.
As another sign that China is continuing its quest to become a global economic superpower, China has announced that it will pledge billions in aid to African nations and significantly increase its trade with the African continent:
China is launching a sweeping effort to expand its access to Africa’s oil and markets, pledging billions of dollars in aid and loans. Chinese entrepreneurs on Sunday signed deals with African governments and firms worth $1.9 billion, state media reported. Some 16 deals were signed at the conclusion of a conference of Chinese and African entrepreneurs on the sidelines of a two-day forum in Beijing attended by dozens of African leaders.
African leaders at the forum said they welcomed Chinese investment and business ties, but Beijing also faces criticism that it is treating Africa like a colonial territory and supports regimes with poor human rights records. . . . Human rights activists accuse China of supporting governments such as Sudan and Zimbabwe that are accused of chronic abuses. African business groups complain about poor treatment by Chinese companies and competition from a flood of low-cost imports.
But a succession of African leaders who spoke Saturday said they want closer commercial ties with China and hope to learn from its two-decade-old boom as they try to reduce poverty.
I suppose it was inevitable that China would eventually expand its economic presence around the world and in effect, pick up where the U.S. is perhaps leaving off. In fact, I might even say that China is following in the U.S.’s footsteps in more ways than one — increasing its financial and economic role in a foreign country, then perhaps slowly increases its political clout with that nation’s leaders as well.
If indeed this is China’s strategy, it should know that previous results involving the U.S. have not always turned out well. You might even say that the current global tensions directed at the U.S. from various parts of the world are a direct testament to the U.S.’s “economic imperialism.” With that in mind, let China be warned — bring it if you want, but don’t make the same mistakes the U.S. made — and continues to make.
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Suggested reference: Le, C.N. . "China To Increase Aid & Investment in Africa" Asian-Nation: The Landscape of Asian America. <http://www.asian-nation.org/headlines/2006/11/china-to-increase-aid-investment-in-africa/> ().
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