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The Africa Report

Sameera Casmod |
16 April 2024 | 21:20 SAST
2-minute read

In this week’s Africa Report on Radio Islam International, Dr Wayne Malinga, an expert in policy and research, provided a comprehensive analysis of the current development landscape in Africa and the evolving relationship between Africa and China.

Dr Malinga began by highlighting the persisting challenges facing Africa’s development journey. Despite nearing the deadline for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2030, Africa continues to grapple with a multitude of issues, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. These challenges include poverty, unemployment, economic instability, climate change, and governance issues, all of which hinder Africa’s progress towards sustainable development.

“When we also look at what is really transpiring is that a majority of these challenges are actually affected by the lack of political development, in relation to a majority of African countries still struggling in terms of good governance, in terms of the observation and preservation of human rights. So these are just some of the social ills that come with the political deterioration that is taking place in a number of African countries… And apart from that, we’ve also got debt burdens in the continent,” Dr Malinga notes.

Addressing the pressing issue of climate change, Dr Malinga underscores Africa’s vulnerability to its effects, particularly due to its heavy reliance on rain-fed agriculture. He emphasised the urgent need for resources and policies to mitigate the impact of climate change, stressing the importance of climate change communication and the transition to green energy.

“There’s certain monies that have been set aside by countries in the global north being led by the big countries, if I can call it that way, in relation to Africa accessing those funds so that it can be able to respond to climate change,” Malinga says.

Dr Malinga discusses China’s growing presence and influence in Africa, spanning various sectors such as trade, infrastructure, manufacturing, and technology. However, Dr Malinga raised concerns about the terms of engagement and African countries’ ability to negotiate equitable deals with China. He urged African nations to scrutinise their partnerships with China to ensure they align with their development goals.

“It is also quite important to also look at the kind of relationship that it has created. There is a deficiency in relation to African agency when it comes to negotiations with China. Is Africa able to negotiate at the same level as China in relation to business deals, in relation to whatever prospects that China has when it comes to the development of the continent? We also need to be well aware of whether [China’s] intentions [are] clear, are these intentions good for the continent, are these intentions meant to ensure that Africa is propelled to a certain level in relation to development and also being able to take itself from the current challenges that it is confronted with?”

Listen to the Africa Report on Sabaahul Muslim with Moulana Sulaimaan Ravat here.


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