Charting the Roots of Anti-Chinese Populism in Africa by Steve Hess, Richard Aidoo

By Steve Hess, Richard Aidoo

This ebook investigates China’s emergence as an out of doors participant in SSA during the last a number of many years and the present figuring out of the effect of Beijing’s transforming into presence at the continent, together with numerous case experiences curious about particular SSA international locations. China’s accelerating fiscal and political engagement with sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) has received growing to be recognition in political and educational circles as an issue of either compliment and derision. China has turn into the traditional bearer of emerging powers rising from the constructing international, and has began to make inroads in its attempt to safe strategic common assets in a quarter typically ruled via the established order powers of the West. courses referring to Sino-African relatives have elevated quickly over the past decade. rather than asking even if China’s position in SSA is a favorable for the continent’s political, fiscal and social improvement, this e-book specializes in frequently neglected African publics and the way they understand China’s engagement. furthermore, rather than developing a uniform “China meets Africa” narrative, this paintings examines China’s presence in sub-Saharan Africa on a country-by-country foundation, accounting for the depth of chinese language engagement, the country’s household political associations, and how within which political marketers inside those structures decide to make the most of chinese language involvement as an tool of political mobilization. will probably be of curiosity to students and policy-makers all in favour of Africa and China's improvement and diplomacy. ​

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Instead, the region is currently mixed in terms of political regime type and levels of economic and social development. Moreover, despite allegations that its engagement in Africa has been aimed, in part, at reinforcing and propping up dictatorships—such as in Ethiopia, Sudan and Zimbabwe,33 China has also partnered with prominent democratic states, such as Ghana and South Africa. These realities have complicated popular characterizations of Sino-African relations and demanded that we adopt a more nuanced approach in explaining both Chinese engagement in Africa and the highly varied popular responses to it.

In terms of political development, African states moved in significantly different directions in the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s. 32 In 1993, the number of not free nations declined to 48 %, the number of partly free nations expanded to 35 % and the number of free countries nearly tripled to 17 % of the total. This progress continued into the late 1990s and early 2000s, with the number of not free nations falling to an all-time low of 35 %, the number of partly free nations increasing to 42 % and the number of free countries peaking at 23 %.

It then suggests that the diverse landscape of Chinese engagement presented opposition candidate, Michael Sata, with a unique opportunity to challenge the ruling MMD. In this context, Sata used the unifying target of a monolithic China to mobilize a multiregional and multiethnic opposition and overcome the advantages enjoyed by the MMD in Zambia’s uneven political playing field. In this sense, “playing the China card,” enabled Sata to beat the odds and win the presidency. It also contributed to pulling Zambian public opinion of China in decidedly negative direction—in spite of many benefits presented by Sino-Zambian economic relations.

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