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Beijing's Role in Africa

         Date: 2012-07-05

           Tag: Africa, Beijing

Summary: Dambisa Moyo argues that China’s involvement with Africa is not exploitative, since it is merely motivated by a quest for “land, oil and minerals.”

Dambisa Moyo argues that China’s involvement with Africa is not exploitative, since it is merely motivated by a quest for “land, oil and minerals.”

Yet many Europeans who colonized Africa were seeking exactly the same thing. Colonialism left African countries stripped of resources and devoid of domestic industry — conditions that fostered dependence on foreign aid and hindered democracy.

Today, Western aid is hardly the solution to Africa’s economic problems, just as the creation of low-paying, unskilled jobs by the Chinese is hardly the solution to Africa’s political problems.

Though Ms. Moyo would rather avoid the “political upheaval” of the Arab Spring, such a popular uprising might be the only way to break the destructive cycle of centuries of foreign interference.

An “African Spring” could finally restore the accountability of local governments, creating mechanisms to ensure that Africa’s wealth remains in African hands.


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