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Gunboat diplomacy

Gunboat diplomacy

China’s stakes in marine bases across Africa are unsettling the world’s major and minor powers, and could force the continent’s countries to take sides African countries may face harsh choices in what could become a new Cold War. Last year China began constructing a military base in Djibouti in the Horn of Africa. It is […]

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Namibia’s rocky relationships

Namibia’s rocky relationships

Despite concerns around corruption and looting of environmental resources, Namibia is determined to forge stronger bonds with Eastern nations, especially China and North Korea Namibia has preached non-alignment and maintained a semblance of independence in foreign affairs, but it has become clear that some of its foreign friends – especially those in the East – […]

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Imagining and forgetting

Imagining and forgetting

The AU’s glossy new headquarters conceals the site’s notorious past as an execution chamber and burial ground for dissidents, vagrants and criminals The concrete skeleton of the new African Union (AU) headquarters tower rises like a blade against the Addis Ababa...

Democracy hypocrisy

Democracy hypocrisy

Instead of toppling autocrats across Africa, the AU’s lip service to democracy props them up Critics have long argued that the African Union (AU) supports the authoritarian rule of many of the leaders of its member countries. They say it is little more than an old...

Putting the US first, at Africa’s expense

Putting the US first, at Africa’s expense

US President-elect Donald Trump © George Skidmore, Flickr   Donald Trump’s “America first” election posturing gave some insight as to how his administration might handle trade relations with the continent In November 2016, the United States (US) concluded one of...

Resourceful consensus

Resourceful consensus

Resource governance is crucial to growth © Helge Fahrnberger A new natural resource governance vision aims to build Africa’s economies through cooperation between the extractives industry and the continent’s other economic sectors Over the past five years, the African...

Bankrolling regional security

Bankrolling regional security

The $200 million AU HQ in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia © Albert Gonzàlez Farran/UNAMID China’s presence on the continent may seem domineering, but its contributions to growth and security might be invaluable China intensifying its engagement with the African Union (AU) is...

Avoiding assimilation

Avoiding assimilation

Britain leaving the EU sent shockwaves worldwide © Mick Baker, Flickr The UK’s unexpected exit from the EU raises questions about whether the AU’s lofty integration ideals resonate with ordinary Africans On 24 June 2016, the world awoke to the unexpected news that the...

Fair’s fair: giving the AU its due

Fair’s fair: giving the AU its due

A 2013 sitting of the AU, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia © Albert González Farran, UNAMID It seems unfair that the AU is held to higher standards than other regional blocs, when it sometimes accomplishes more The African Union (AU) has often been subjected to a barrage of...

Not quite at the ready

Not quite at the ready

Senegalese peacekeepers train in North Darfur, Sudan © Alberto Gonzalez Farran/UN Photo Despite being proposed in 2003, the African Standby Force is still not ready to hit the ground running For Africa, after the fall of the Soviet Union and the much-vaunted “end of...

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Gung-ho diggers quitting Africa in droves

Gung-ho diggers quitting Africa in droves

The big players in Australia’s mining sector have grown wary of Africa’s regulatory requirements, but smaller miners still take chances on the continent Seen from an investment perspective, the pattern of engagement between Australia and sub-Saharan Africa has largely been dictated by the mining and mining services sectors, and, more specifically, the commodity cycle. This […]

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ad

Gunboat diplomacy

Gunboat diplomacy

China’s stakes in marine bases across Africa are unsettling the world’s major and minor powers, and could force the continent’s countries to take sides African countries may face harsh choices in what could become a new Cold War. Last year China began constructing a...

Namibia’s rocky relationships

Namibia’s rocky relationships

Despite concerns around corruption and looting of environmental resources, Namibia is determined to forge stronger bonds with Eastern nations, especially China and North Korea Namibia has preached non-alignment and maintained a semblance of independence in foreign...

Imagining and forgetting

Imagining and forgetting

The AU’s glossy new headquarters conceals the site’s notorious past as an execution chamber and burial ground for dissidents, vagrants and criminals The concrete skeleton of the new African Union (AU) headquarters tower rises like a blade against the Addis Ababa...

Democracy hypocrisy

Democracy hypocrisy

Instead of toppling autocrats across Africa, the AU’s lip service to democracy props them up Critics have long argued that the African Union (AU) supports the authoritarian rule of many of the leaders of its member countries. They say it is little more than an old...

Putting the US first, at Africa’s expense

Putting the US first, at Africa’s expense

US President-elect Donald Trump © George Skidmore, Flickr   Donald Trump’s “America first” election posturing gave some insight as to how his administration might handle trade relations with the continent In November 2016, the United States (US) concluded one of...

Resourceful consensus

Resourceful consensus

Resource governance is crucial to growth © Helge Fahrnberger A new natural resource governance vision aims to build Africa’s economies through cooperation between the extractives industry and the continent’s other economic sectors Over the past five years, the African...

Bankrolling regional security

Bankrolling regional security

The $200 million AU HQ in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia © Albert Gonzàlez Farran/UNAMID China’s presence on the continent may seem domineering, but its contributions to growth and security might be invaluable China intensifying its engagement with the African Union (AU) is...

Avoiding assimilation

Avoiding assimilation

Britain leaving the EU sent shockwaves worldwide © Mick Baker, Flickr The UK’s unexpected exit from the EU raises questions about whether the AU’s lofty integration ideals resonate with ordinary Africans On 24 June 2016, the world awoke to the unexpected news that the...

Fair’s fair: giving the AU its due

Fair’s fair: giving the AU its due

A 2013 sitting of the AU, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia © Albert González Farran, UNAMID It seems unfair that the AU is held to higher standards than other regional blocs, when it sometimes accomplishes more The African Union (AU) has often been subjected to a barrage of...