China-Africa Honeymoon Over? Nigeria Central Bank Governor Thinks So

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The governor of Nigeria’s Central bank, Lamido Sanusi, has warned that Africa must “remove the rose-tinted glasses” through which it view China.

In this Financial Times article, Sanusi says the relationship is no longer that of two peers in the developing world. Instead, it was one of an imperialist power exploiting a weaker economy.

Sanusi then criticized the Chinese regime for hampering Africa’s industrialization and development.

Mike Morris is the director of Policy Research in International Services and Manufacturing at Cape Town University. He says African nations need to have a united approach towards China.

[Mike Morris, Professor, School of Economics, Cape Town University]:
“China has a policy and a strategy for Africa. Africa as a whole doesn’t have one for China. In other words, what that means is that China can deal with 52 countries with one policy and strategy. The African countries are all trying to cut a bilateral deal between themselves and cut the next country out, and not able to stand together in one forum as one voice, and that would be to the best of their advantage.”

Sanusi warns against Africa seeing China as its savior. Like other major economies, he says China is in the continent for its own sake.

China’s taking of raw materials from Africa and sending Chinese manufactured goods there have created a trade imbalance. And while, the Chinese regime has helped to build African infrastructure, Sanusi says it’s not developing Africa’s human capital.

Most observers agree that China’s interest in Africa lies with its natural resources. African conservation expert, Philip Muruthi, welcomes China’s presence, but wants its development there to be sustainable.

[Philip Muruthi, Director, Conservation Science, African Wildlife Foundation]:
“Contribute to conservation in Africa and we will become very happy about the integration of Chinese. We appreciate that there is, China has a very great role to do in Africa in development. That is appreciated, but we would like respect for those resources for which Africa is endowed.”

Sanusi also does not advocate severing the relationship entirely. He wants African countries to engage China for mutual benefit that helps the local economy and human resources. But he wants Africa to see the Chinese regime for what it is: a competitor who is after its own gain.

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