China Defends Its Expansion Into Africa – Richard McGregor

The Financial Times reports on the upcoming China-Africa summit to be held in Beijing next week, which about 40 heads of African states are slated to attend:

China said Thursday that all 48 African countries invited to the two-day summit next week would send representatives, with most confirming their heads of state would attend.

The five remaining nations in the 53-strong African Union which recognise Taipei ahead of Beijing have also been invited to send observers.

The summit will attempt to give some political ballast to a relationship that has developed rapidly over the past five years, driven by China’s need for raw materials, especially oil, from the resource-rich continent.

But China’s expansion in Africa has also drawn criticism for overlooking human rights abuses in countries such as Sudan and declining to adopt a lending code followed by many global banks on social and environmental standards. [Full text]

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