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The flurry of news about China and Africa is reaching a peak as the November 3-5 Beijing Summit gets underway. There is little doubt that effusive pledges of solidarity and good old cash will be forthcoming in abundance. And it is also patently clear that China has every intention of continuing to ramp up its activities in Africa; look no further than China's official "Africa Policy" released last January.
In a recent CGD Note, Sarah Rose and I argued that the U.S. government should support the Investment Climate Facility for Africa (ICF), but only after several questions about the initiative were answered.
There have been many many bad ideas over the years about how to help Africa, but here’s my vote for the worst one in a long while: UNCTAD’s proposal to create a new UN agency to manage a doubling of aid flows to the continent.
Before we get to the proposed solution, the analysis of the problem is deeply flawed. According to the press release:
Chad has expelled oil giants Chevron and Petronas from the country for allegedly failing to pay taxes. The press seems to be suggesting that the move is either another Bolivia-style nationalization or simply the government moving the American and Malaysian companies out of the way for another investor:
Zimbabwe's bankrupt regime has been consistent about one thing: the repeated claim that a big recovery is right around the corner. Of course, instead the economy just continues to implode, and now Zimbabweans are back to an average income not seen since the 1940s. President Robert Mugabe has just given an interview where he stuck to the same old script: