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Published 1st January 2013

Vol 6 (AAC) No 3

Year of the Snake

SOUTH AFRICA: A bird looks on as a snake slides past a pool of water. Graeme Williams / Panos
SOUTH AFRICA: A bird looks on as a snake slides past a pool of water. Graeme Williams / Panos

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

Demand for natural resources will ease as China focuses more on internal politics while moving towards consumer-led growth and management of political risk

The year 2012 was a tumultuous one, as might be expected from a Year of the Dragon. However, while the run-up to the Chinese leadership transition was nothing if not controversial, President Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao’s passing of the baton to Xi Jinping and Li Keqiang was smoothly done. The Xi-Li government is unlikely to signal any dramatic changes for China’s African relations. Xi met frequently with African leaders during Hu Jintao’s presidency and therefore has a firm grasp of the relevant issues.

Chinese companies look for cheaper assets

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

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The pace of multibillion dollar Chinese deals seems to have slowed after the stalled US$23 billion refinery investment in Nigeria in 2010 and the Sicomines joint venture deal in Co...

Abe backs business

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

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Japan’s private sector is taking a more strategic view of Africa and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s new government will back them all the way

Governments may come and go but the Tokyo International Conference on African Development remains at the heart of Japan-Africa relations. Even as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Libera...

Big projects and bottlenecks

Natural resources are still the main draw for investors but new markets for India’s food, services and consumer goods beckon the big companies

The Indian National Congress and Manmohan Singh will try to hang on until general elections are called, in mid-2014 at the latest. With corruption fuelling the public’s anger, the ...

Going strong

2012 marked a turning point in every sector of South Korea’s ties with Africa – diplomacy, trade, investment and official development assistance

South Korean companies are the contractors of choice for African governments but the East Asian country is also expanding its peacekeeping and official development assistance (ODA)...

Growth in a time of global austerity

Despite the global slowdown, Africa-Asia trade moves full steam ahead

State-owned oil company PT Pertamina made its largest African acreage purchase in December. A deal for stakes in three Algerian blocks owned by United States company ConocoPhillips...


Shinzo Abe

Prime Minister, Japan

Japan’s new leader, Shinzo Abe, wants to shape a more assertive role for his country in both the region and on the global stage. That will require more attention to relations with ...

Park Geun-hye

President-elect, South Korea

The arrival of Park Geun-hye in power in late February 2013 is likely to signal continuity rather than change in South Korea’s Africa policy. The daughter of former President Park ...

John Dramani Mahama

President, Ghana

Newly elected as President in December 2012, John Dramani Mahama will continue to deepen Ghana’s ties with its Asian trading partners. When former Vice-President Mahama served un...

Cyril Ramaphosa

Deputy President, African National Congress, South Africa

Former trade unionist Cyril Ramaphosa was elected as the African National Congress’s new Deputy President at the Manguang conference in December 2012. Ahead of the conference, oppo...