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September 20, 2015

China-Africa news: Countries most affected by China’s slowdown, Ethiopia’s tramway

Chinese tramZambia threatens to close mining company. CNMC Luanshya Copper Mines defended itself against allegations by the Zambian government that it had illegally sent 1,600 workers on forced leave. The miners lost their jobs after CNMC closed one of its mines citing falling global prices for copper (largely due to a fall in demand from China) and energy shortages. The Zambian government had threatened to revoke the company's licence, but CNMC says it followed the law.

Chinese teachers for SA Mandarin. A South African official said China is providing Mandarin teachers to implement the teaching of the language in public schools next year. The teachers will stay for the first five years during which they will also train local teachers. The recruitment and welfare of the Chinese teachers is the responsibility of the Chinese government. Additionally, the official said Mandarin was added to the curriculum at the request of the Chinese embassy. That revelation was never going to sit well with some parties…

…The South African Democratic Teachers Union, which has opposed the Mandarin plan from day one, criticised the education department for opening "the market to Chinese teachers" yet South Africa has many unemployed teachers. Teaching indigenous South African languages instead of Chinese would have employed local teachers, a union official said.

Sino-American synergy. An American firm and a Chinese firm are working together to build a wind farm in Kenya. The Kenyan project is the first of infrastructure projects valued at $2 billion to be undertaken by General Electric and Sinomach in emerging markets.

The three African nations most exposed to China's slump. They are Republic of Congo, Angola, and Mauritius, according to Bloomberg. Chinese demand accounted for more than 45% of the exports of each of the three nations in 2014. The story also lists other African nations most exposed to China's slowdown.

Liberia, which is recovering from a devastating Ebola outbreak, makes the list. The Wall Street Journal fleshed out how and why China's slump is a problem for the West African country.

The social enterprise helping Chinese entrepreneurs integrate in Kenya. China House was started by Hongxiang Huang, who reported for this project before setting up in Nairobi.

Sub-Saharan Africa’s second tramway starts operating in Ethiopia. It's actually the only tramway currently operating in sub-Saharan Africa (the first one, in Johannesburg, was closed in 1961). The 34-km Addis Ababa tram system was financed and constructed by China.


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