In this week's edition of the Emerging Powers News Round-Up, read a comprehensive list of news stories and opinion pieces related to China, India and other emerging powers...
1. China in Africa
China's Xinjiang Goldwind targets African growth
China's Xinjiang Goldwind Science and Technology, the world's No. 5 maker of wind turbines, opened an office in Cape Town on Monday with the aim of supplying equipment and project finance in Africa. The company, which since the turn of the millenium achieved an average growth of more than 100 percent a year, listed on the Hong Kong bourse late last year and will use the roughly $900 million raised to help fund debt and equity projects in Africa, the Americas and Australia.
Chinese firm lands US$7 billion Chad railway building contract
Chad signed on Monday a US$7-billion (five-billion-euro) contract with China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) to build a railway in the oil-producing nation.
Ghana's gold rush lures Chinese with illicit mines
The groan of excavators, abandoned pits filled with stagnant brown water and the local chief's expensive off-road car hint at the mine tucked away in a bamboo forest in Dikoto, western Ghana. Its gold rush started well before it was given borders and colonially branded the Gold Coast. But record world bullion prices are luring a fresh wave of fortune-seekers -- this time from China. An increasing number of small mines are owned by Ghanaians on paper but controlled illegally by Chinese entrepreneurs, according to miners, concession-owners and security forces interviewed by Reuters during a trip to Ghana's mines belt.
SPDC JV sponsors China – Nigeria business summit
MORE than 160 Nigerian and Chinese companies met in Abuja recently to explore business opportunities in the oil and gas industry. The one day summit, sponsored by The Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) operated Joint Venture involved more than 30 visiting delegations from companies such as China National Oil Corporation and China Petroleum and Chemical Corporation, who discussed with Nigerian vendors and contractors areas such as skills acquisition, partnerships and execution of oil and gas projects.
China, Zimbabwe economic ties strengthened
China will continue to assist Zimbabwe and strengthen relations between the two countries. China’s Ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Xin Shunkang said economic co-operation agreements to be signed next week were part of fulfilling that objective. The agreements will be signed during Vice Prime Minister Mr Wang Qishan’s visit to Zimbabwe. Vice Premier Wang arrives in Harare on Monday on a two-day visit.
ZANU PF propped up by controversial Chinese businessman
ZANU PF is reportedly being propped up by a controversial Chinese businessman, who has been supplying the Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) with the means to keep Robert Mugabe in power. According to South Africa’s Sunday Times newspaper, elusive business magnate Sam Pa and CIO chief Happyton Bonyongwe have struck a deal, which sees Pa financing “a covert operation whose purpose is to sustain President Robert Mugabe's regime.” The newspaper quotes “disillusioned intelligence officers and party officials,” who are said to be “unhappy” about how Zimbabwe’s natural resources are being traded for “personal and electoral gain.”
Report counterfeit cases, China tells East Africa
China has advised East African countries to report cases of substandard and counterfeit products and tighten the monitoring of their import gates. The Chinese government is also fighting to control fake and low-quality products at the source to restore confidence on the quality, safety and reliability of their goods. The Chinese fake and substandard goods have flocked the East African Community (EAC) member states, to the extent that it has become difficult for individual governments to fight the trend.
2. India in Africa
India fails in bid to gain stake in Angolan oil field
India’s biggest energy explorer, Oil & Natural Gas (ONGC), has lost a bid to buy Exxon Mobil’s 25% stake in an Angolan oil field, said two sources with knowledge of the matter. The energy explorer, based in New Delhi, had offered about 2bn for the stake in Block 31 off Angola’s coast, said one of the sources. The state-owned energy explorer is leading a drive by India to secure energy supplies overseas as demand for fuels rises in Asia’s second fastest-growing major economy after China. India has told the energy explorer and Oil India to expedite purchases as competition with Chinese companies for resources heats up, said Indian Oil Secretary S Sundareshan.
India, Nigeria to boost economic, energy ties
India and Nigeria, Africa's largest oil-producing country and the continent's most populous nation, will hold wide-ranging talks Wednesday to boost their economic and energy ties. Nigerian Foreign Minister Odein Ajumogobia arrived in India Tuesday afternoon on a four-day visit, during which he will discuss ways to improve economic linkages as well as important regional issues. Ajumogobia will co-chair the fifth meeting of the India-Nigeria Joint Commission on March 16. The Indian delegation will be led by External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna.
3. In Other Emerging Powers News
Mojo to Gain Two New Tanneries
The two new tanneries under construction in Modjo are expected to become operational within the next six months. The tanneries are being constructed by two foreign companies, Baoding Jeronimo Fur Product Co from China and Farida Group from India, in the dusty and sleepy town situated 73km southeast of Addis Ababa. It would be the first in Africa for Farida Group, an exporter of leather and leather footwear. Construction started on three hectares at an estimated cost of about four million dollars, on February 1, 2011.
Bric will be boon for SA trade, exports
South Africa's membership to the Bric group of emerging economies will add value to the country's trade and exports, President Jacob Zuma said on Thursday. "(It) will actively promote trade and investment which enhances industrialisation and promotes job creation," said Zuma. He was responding to a question in the National Assembly about the benefits of being a member of the Brazil, Russia, India and China grouping. South Africa joining the bloc would take it from Bric to Bricsa. Brics is an acronym used to describe the five leading economic regions emerging in the global economy.
India abstains from Libya vote, fears it may worsen situation
As the Security Council authorised the use of force in Libya, India abstained from the vote out of a concern that the measures may not worsen the Libyan people's woes. 'We had to ensure that the measures will mitigate and not exacerbate an already difficult situation for the people of Libya,' India's Deputy Permanent Representative Manjeev Singh Puri said in explanation of its vote. 'Clarity in the resolution on any spill-over affects of these measures would have been very important,' he said.
China voices "serious reservations" on Libya no-fly decision
China said on Friday it has "serious reservations" about a U.N. decision calling for a no-fly zone over strife-torn Libya, but held back from blocking the resolution because of the demands of Arab and African countries. The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu laid out Beijing's worries after the Security Council passed the resolution authorising the no-fly zone over Libya as well as "all necessary measures", a term for military action, to protect civilians against leader Muammar Gaddafi's forces.
MTN says to invest $1bn in Nigeria network
The Nigerian arm of Africa's biggest mobile phone operator MTN said on Friday it plans to invest $1-billion over the next year to expand its network in the continent's most populous nation. Mobile phone operators are boosting capacity to defend market share in sub-Saharan Africa's second-biggest economy as increased competition changes the industry landscape. On Thursday, Etisalat Nigeria said it had sealed a $650-million syndicated loan agreement with eight local banks to expands its mobile phone network.
Go for technology deals from China and India, Africa urged
African countries have been advised to negotiate for technology from China and India in exchange for resources, rather than exporting raw materials to earn foreign currency. The advise was given by Prof Mwesiga Baregu of St Augustine University of Tanzania in a paper titled: “Africa-China Engagement: An Historical Opportunity,” at a two-day ninth Eastern Africa media training under the theme; “Is East Africa ready for China, India and Europe?” According to Prof Baregu, the raw materials which Africa still has are in high demand in China and India. Conversely, the continent suffers from a big deficit in technology which is available in the Asian countries.
Brazil preparing plan to stimulate industry and cut knick-knack Chinese imports
Brazil imports too many knick-knacks from China complained Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff, who next month makes an official state visit to the Asian giant, according to reports in the Sao Paulo press. President Rousseff concerned over the misbalance in trade with China President Rousseff concerned over the misbalance in trade with China Last Friday President Rousseff met with labour leaders and said she was concerned with the misbalance in trade with China.
India world's largest arms importer, China second
India has emerged as the world's largest arms importer overtaking China which shared the second spot with South Korea followed by Pakistan, according to a report by a Swedish think-tank. "India is the world's largest arms importer," according to new data on international arms transfers published on Monday by Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). "India received 9 per cent of the volume of international arms transfers during 2006-10, with Russian deliveries accounting for 82 per cent of Indian arms imports," it said in a comprehensive annual update of the SIPRI Arms Transfers Database.
Standard eyes new partnership in Russia
THE body language of Standard Bank group CEO Jacko Maree on Friday was evident even though he was facing the media via a video link while seated thousands of kilometres away in a conference room in Moscow. He appeared tired but seemed relieved to announce Standard has given up on its ambitions to remain invested in Troika Dialog, the investment bank in which it spent $300m in 2009 to buy a stake of 36,4%. He said Standard would get $372m in cash from the sale of its shareholding to Sberbank, Russia’s largest bank, and also the market leader in central and eastern Europe.
4. Blogs, Opinions, Presentations and Publications
Money, minerals make for Africa-China marriage
China has been Africa's No. 1 investor for years and its newly affluent could soon follow by sending large flows of cash into the quickly emerging continent looking for better returns than in Asia. But any money that comes from private investors in China and other parts of Asia will pale in comparison to the billions of dollars Beijing has sent as it looks to secure the mineral resources it needs to power its hard-charging economy. Zambia President Rupiah Banda said China understands Africa better than most of the world and has proved itself a trusted ally. His country, with a World Bank-estimated $12.7 billion GDP in 2009, is expected to see about $2.4 billion in Chinese investment this year. "They have big, big industries with great appetites for what Africa has to offer," Banda told the Reuters Africa Investment Summit this week. "In the process, they are making it easier for us to achieve what we want. What we want is to rebuild our countries."
The Lure of Brazilian Agriculture
Countries with large territories such as Canada, China, and the United States are hosts to significant levels of inward FDI in agriculture. South American countries attract FDI in grains, sugar, fruits, soy and livestock while for Central American countries it is mostly fruits and sugar can. In Africa, foreign investors have shown a particular interest in staple crops such as rice, wheat and in oil crops whereas FDI in South Asia has targeted production of rice and wheat. Other Asian regions have concentrated more on cash crops, meat and poultry. This recent upswing in domestic private and foreign participation in agricultural industries has come about as a result of several factors.
Chinese Ambassador to Zambia Takes Interview by Zambian National TV
Li Qiangming, Chinese Ambassador to Zambia, accepted an exclusive interview from Zambian National TV (ZNBC), the most important official media in Zambia. In the interview, Ambassador Li answered questions on China’s nature of being a developing country, its status as the second-largest economy in the world, and economic and trade co-operations with Zambia, among others.