Adapting China’s African strategy to the realities of the post-COVID world

Publication type Article
Status Published
Occupation: Research Fellow, Centre for the Study of the Russian-African Relations and African States’ Foreign Policy, Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences
Affiliation: Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow
Journal nameAsia and Africa Today
EditionIssue 12

In the end of 2021, the eighth Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Ministerial Conference was held. The conference, which takes place every three years alternately in the PRC and one of the African countries, each time marks a certain new stage in the development of Sino-African relations and charts new paths along this path. The Dakar forum however was of particular strategic importance. It took place in fundamentally new conditions of a profoundly changed post-COVID world, in which the physical capabilities and limitations of mutual communication became different, because of the pandemic; the conditions of human security on the planet have fundamentally changed; the prevailing paradigms of the globalization process have been seriously.

The FOCAC-2021 sought to outline the ways for the development of the entire multifaceted complex of Sino-African in new historical conditions. The author analyzes the degree of implementation of the plans and targets of the previous FOCAC-2018 Summit. New benchmarks and goals for the next three years of Sino-African cooperation and the impact on them of new objective conditions, including the COVID-19 pandemic, the growth of confrontation in relations between the PRC and the United States and its allies, and the reformatting of previous globalization ties and interdependencies are highlighted as they have been outlined in Dakar.

The author argues that, despite these fundamental global transformations, China's African strategy, in contrast to relations with a number of key world actors, does not undergo a profound modification. China sets the task not to fundamentally change, its strategy in African and routine engagement with its with partners on the continent under the influence of the new factors, but only to adapt to the realities of the post-COVID world order, in the context of the emerging balance of power and interests in the world.

KeywordsChina, Africa, FOCAC, COVID-19, One Belt, One Road projects, FDI, diaspora
Publication date08.12.2021
Number of characters31281
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