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The fall of Robert Mugabe has dominated global coverage of Africa over the past few weeks. In Western coverage of the first week after the coup in Zimbabwe there was speculation about what China knew beforehand and whether Beijing played an active role in pushing for it.

Published in Opinion & Analysis

The South African Institute of International Affairs cordially invites you to the book launch of China and Africa: Building Peace and Security on the Continent by Prof Chris Alden. Alden is an Associate Senior Research Fellow on South African Foreign Policy and China-Africa Relations at SAIIA and Professor in International Relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Published in Events
Friday, 27 October 2017

African ties that bind: new books

New books with contributions by our Senior Research Associate Prof Chris Alden shed light on growing security links between China and Africa; and Brazil-Mozambican ties in the area of development assistance:

Published in News & Announcements

This book critically investigates the expanding involvement of a leading emerging power, Brazil, in one of Africa’s fastest growing economies, Mozambique. It looks at the dynamics of Brazilian development assistance, its flagship engagement in Mozambique’s agricultural and resource sector and the burgeoning social ties that bind them together.

Published in Books

Drawing on leading and emerging scholars in the field, this book unpacks the complexity of security challenges confronting China and the continent. It also interrogates how security considerations impact upon the growing economic and social links China has developed with African states.

Published in Books

Earlier this year, president Xi Jinping strode the world stage at Davos with his statement that 'We should commit ourselves to growing an open global economy… Pursuing protectionism is like locking oneself in a dark room.'

Published in Opinion & Analysis

South Africa has variously styled itself as a ‘bridge’ between the North, the global South and Africa as well as a ‘gateway’ into the continent. It also sees itself as a spokesperson for Africa, given its membership of the alliance of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa BRICS and the G20.

Published in Opinion & Analysis
Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Values, Culture and the Ivory Trade Ban

SAIIA Occasional Paper No 244, September 2016

Published in Occasional Papers

Three countries in southern Africa have banded together to press for the ban on international trade in ivory to be lifted. South Africa, Namibia and Zimbabwe have submitted a joint proposal to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). They are asking for permission to trade in ivory without which, they argue, there are no positive incentives to conserve elephants or their habitats.

Published in Opinion & Analysis

In early May, the governments of Zimbabwe and Namibia took the unusual step of petitioning the Convention on the International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES) to remove their elephants from CITES protection, which currently prohibits them from selling elephant ivory. Arguing that the international ban – imposed in 1989 - of selling ivory has been a costly and unsuccessful 26-year ‘experiment’, officials from the two Southern African countries are trying to make a case for releasing their ivory stockpiles onto the global market and thereby turn a profit.

Published in Opinion & Analysis

Kenya destroyed its entire stockpile of elephant ivory; over 100 tonnes of ‘white gold’ went up in smoke on Saturday, 30 April 2016. This stock consists of both illegally harvested ivory (confiscated from poachers or traders) and naturally accruing ivory (from natural mortality). In China - where the majority of the world’s ivory is currently either consumed or stockpiled - the recently reported price of ivory is USD$1,100/kg, and the average weight of a pair of elephant tusks is around 7kg. This means that the final value - at point of consumption - of one pair of elephant tusks is worth roughly USD$7,700 in the illicit market. To most economists, the idea of destroying this kind of value is anathema. So why would any country volunteer to surrender this wealth to the flame?

Published in Opinion & Analysis

SAIIA Occasional Paper No 226, January 2016

Published in Occasional Papers
The upcoming Forum on China Africa Co-operation (FOCAC) summit in South Africa, the sixth gathering since 2000 and only the second to be held at heads of state level, comes at a time of unprecedented Chinese activism across the globe.
Published in Opinion & Analysis

Fifteen years after its inception, the sixth Forum on China Africa Co-operation (FOCAC) will be held in Johannesburg on December 4-5 under the theme, ‘Africa-China Progressing Together: Win-Win Cooperation for Common Development’. Launched in October 2000 in Beijing as a tri-annual collective dialogue platform for co-operation between China and Africa, FOCAC is a signal of the dynamic and expanding nature of China-Africa relations. 

Published in News & Announcements
SAIIA has just released a new working paper and short analysis on India-Africa relations under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Published in News & Announcements
Saturday, 24 January 2015

Factsheet: China-Africa Relations

China-Africa ties have expanded beyond trade and investment in extractive industries to engagement in telecommunications, infrastructure, manufacturing, finance, media, agriculture and peace and security issues.

Published in Opinion & Analysis
South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma will be making his second state visit to China between 4 and 5 December 2014. China-South Africa relations have steadily progressed at the bilateral level and beyond, since official relations were established in 1998 - and have been further upgraded to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership since 2010.
Published in News & Announcements
The announcement of a joint agreement between the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and Hebei Iron and Steel Group to open a steel mill in Phalaborwa could signal a new stage in the longstanding relationship between South Africa and China. Financed in part by the China Africa Development Fund, the deal reportedly involves the Chinese company taking a 51% share in the joint venture and building a processing plant that will go beyond the mere extraction of resources for export and generate local employment.
Published in Opinion & Analysis
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