China in Africa

Date: 21st February 2019
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China’s role in Africa has increased exponentially since around 2000 and it is arguably the most significant factor affecting the continent since the end of the Cold war. However, Chinese relations with Africa have attracted a high degree of criticism, with many allegations claiming that China undermines democracy, good governance, labour and environmental standards and even that prison labour is shipped from China to Africa to work on Chinese construction sites. Most of this critique is overblown and springs more from feelings in the West that China is displacing power in what has long been regarded as a Western sphere of influence. This talk by Professor Ian Taylor, School of International Relations at the University of St Andrews, aims to provide an overview of what China is up to in Africa and answer some of the criticisms levelled at the relationship.