Continuity of China-Africa partnership secured at the National CPC Congress

27 November 2017

The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), held in October, outlined a framework for continuation of the China-Africa partnership, which had already been considered strategic by Beijing, according to analyst Richard Li.

In an article for the NTU-SBF Centre for African Studies, created by the Nanyang Technological University and Singapore Business Federation, Richard Li says that the high likelihood President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Li Keqiang will remain in their roles is positive for Africa, which has benefited from Chinese support for its development.

For Africa, this will be a continuation in China-Africa relations and, whatever plans President Xi and the Prime Minister Li put in practice, they it will continue and will be fully implemented,” says the analyst, who is a partner of Steel Advisory Partners, of Singapore.

The 7th Forum for China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), which is planned to be held in Beijing in 2018, is expected to “further extend and deepen the bilateral relationship” achieved at the most recent FOCAC, held in 2015 in Johannesburg, said Li.

At the FOCAC in 2015, President Xi announced a commitment of US$60 billion for Africa, in addition to agreeing to update the relationship between China and Africa to a “comprehensive strategic cooperation partnership,” which is based on five pillars.

According to Li, another “important project for transformation” of Chinese relations with Africa is the “Belt and Road” initiative, which was launched in 2013 and involves several African countries, many of which attended a summit in Beijing in May, focused the project, the initial investment for which is starting to be implemented.

In a recent report, the World Bank said that, in order to remedy the continent’s lack of infrastructure, Africa will need US$100 billion of investment per year, in the foreseeable future, and China has been the main financier and builder of these facilities, as is the case in Angola.

According to Li, the “China-Africa partnership should continue to grow after the 19the National Congress” of the CPC, with the continuity of the Chinese leadership, but also on the basis of “China’s need to reform its own domestic economy,” as well as “forge its place in the global political, economic and cultural scene.”

“For the African continent,” he says, “while it is gaining significantly with relations with China, the responsibility also falls on the respective African leaders, in order to take care of their national interests, as well as raise their economic development to greater heights.” (macauhub)