African debt to China: ‘A major drain on the poorest countries

Jonathan Wheatley, Joseph Cotterill & Neil Munshi, Financial Times |

Photo by Eric Prouzet on Unsplash

Over the past two decades, China has emerged as the biggest bilateral lender to Africa, transferring nearly $150bn to governments and state-owned companies as it sought to secure commodity supplies and develop its global network of infrastructure projects, the Belt and Road Initiative. But the Covid-19 crisis has revealed the fragmented nature of Chinese lending as well as Beijing’s reluctance to fully align with global debt relief plans.

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