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  • Writer's pictureAnzetse Were

Webinar: The Role of Chinese Investment in Africa’s Economic Transformation

This webinar was held by the South African Institute of Economic Affairs on November 12, 2020.


While China’s role used to be relatively narrow, with a strong focus on extractives, it is now active in many sectors of the African economy, from infrastructure provision to investment in Africa’s growing tech and services sectors. The event will provide a chance to reflect on the complexity of this role, while also looking forward. The COVID-19 crisis is putting unprecedented pressure on Africa – it is now not only a health crisis, but also rapidly evolving into a debt and economic crisis too. China is intimately involved in all these areas and can play a key role in Africa’s post-pandemic recovery.

In this webinar, we will focus on how Chinese trade and investment will contribute to a post-COVID-19 Africa and what the continent’s options are in making this interaction more fruitful. In broad terms, the event will focus on the following questions:

  • How can trade and investment boost a post-COVID-19 recovery?

  • How can African policy increase linkages between African and Chinese firms to boost job creation?

  • How can development be maximised all along value chains, rather than in isolation?

  • How can joint ventures and other longer-term partnerships be supported?

  • How can policy boost virtuous competition while minimising malicious competition?

  • What should African policymakers understand about Chinese investment?

This event is co-hosted by SAIIA and ODI and launches the Development and Economic Growth Research Programme (DEGRP) new report Africa’s Economic Transformation: The Role of Chinese Investment. DEGRP funds world-class scientific research on inclusive economic growth in low-income countries (LICs) and is supported by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office and UK Economic and Social Research Council.


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