Sino-African Relations: Economic Opportunities and Challenges for China


  • Sohail Ahmad Department of Humanities, International Relations Program, Comsats University, Islamabad, Pakistan.
  • Azka Gull International Relations Program, Department of Humanities, COMSATS University, Islamabad Pakistan.
  • Sehrish Irfan Department of Economics, Faculty of Business Administration, COMSATS University, Islamabad Pakistan.



Sino-Africa Relations, Sino-African Relations, Economic Opportunities, Trade Relations, Economic Relations, FDIs, Chinese FDIs


Africa is known for its massive labour force and natural resources. In terms of economic growth, African countries have faced prolonged phases of economic crises. China is a significant contributor in Africa’s economic stability. This paper analyses and evaluates the current opportunities and challenges related to China’s engagements in Africa and its policies for triggering economic development in African countries. China’s comprehensive approach is more concentrated on the sustainable development of the domestic infrastructure and job creation for the Africa communities. But there exists a gap in the current Chinese policies that have deepened the concerns of the locals about economic growth and progress. China needs to develop policies that would be mutually beneficial, these policies must ensure economic stability, job creation and growth. Various ongoing development projects initiated by the Chinese have in fact created insecurities amongst the Africans. This anxiety among the locals have become a major hurdle for China’s plans in the continent. Ongoing Chinese policies need to be innovative along with the integration of modern economic models. A reform in the current policies would ensure maximum benefits for both economic partners.


Metrics Loading ...


Adem, S. (2014). Decoding the discourse on China in Africa. Journal of African Foreign Affairs, 1(2), 93-106.

Ademola, O. T., Bankole, A. S., & Adewuy, A. O. (2016). China-Africa trade relations: insights from AERC scoping studies. In The Power of Chinees Dragon (pp. 69-97). London: Palgrave Macmillan. DOI:

Alden, C. (2005). Leveraging the Dragon: Toward "an Africa that can say no". eAfrica, 3. South African Institute of International Affiars.

Asongu, S. A. (2016). Sino?African relations: A review and reconciliation of the dominant schools of thought. Politics and Policy, 44(2), 351-383. DOI:

Asongu, S., & Ssozi, J. (2015). Sino-African relations: Some solutions and strategies to the policy syndromes. Journal of African Business, 17(1), 33-51. DOI:

BBC News. (2018). Reality Check: Is China burdening Africa with debt? Retrieved from

Besada, H. G. (2013). Assessing China's relations with Africa. Africa Development, 38(1&2), 81-106.

Chen, W., Dollar, D., & Tang, H. (2016). Why is China investing in Africa? Evidence from the firm level. The World Bank Economic Review, 32(3), 610-632. DOI:

Doku, I., Akuma, J., & Owusu-Afriyie, J. (2017). Effects of Chinese foreighn direct investment on economic growth in Africa. Journal of Chinees Economic and Foreign Trade Studies. Retrieved from Emerald Insight: DOI:

Dollar, D. (2016). China’s engagement with Africa: From natural resources to human resources. In: John L. Thornton: China Centre Monograph Series (7). China Centre at Brooking.

Elsenman, J., Heginbotham, E., Mitchell, D. (ed.) (2015). China and the developing world: Beijing’s strategy for the twenty-first century. New York: Taylor & Francis. DOI:

Giovannetti, G., & Sanfilippo, M. (2011). China’s economic cooperation with Africa. Journal of African Development 13(1&2), 143-176.

Goldstein, A., Pinaud, N., & Reisen, H. (2006, May 1). The rise of India and China: What's in it for Africa. Retrived from OECD iLibrary:

Hanusch, M. (2010). African perspectives on China-Africa: Modelling popular perceptions and their economic and political determinants. Oxford Development Studies, 40(4), 492-516. DOI:

Hellendroff, B. (2011). China and DRC: Africa's next top models? Note d'Analyse 13. Retrieved from:

Hill, C. (2015). The role of the tiger and the elephant in the ascent of Africa: Partners or neo-colonialists? Honors Thesis. Retrieved from University of Tennessee:

Huaxia (2018, October 26). 70 pct of Ethiopia's sesame export go to China. Retrieved from Xinhua:

Jayaram, K., Kassiri, O., & Sun, I. (2017). The closest look yet at Chinese economic engagement in Africa. Mickensey Report: Mickensey and Company.

Kaplinsky, R., & Morris, M. (2012). Chinese OFDI in Sub-Saharan Africa. In Chinese international investments (pp. 300-325). London: Palgrave Macmillan. DOI:

Khatoon, A., Rahim, N., & Ali, B. (2018). A historical perspective of China's peaceful politics and its rise as world economic power. Liberal Arts and Social Sciences International Journal, 2(1), 65-74. DOI:

Laingyu. (2018, October 24). Interview: Ethiopia eyes boost in sesameexport to China amid growing demand. Retrieved from Xinhua:

Muzaffar, M., Yaseen, Z. & Rahim, N. (2017). Changing dynamics of global politics: Transition from unipolar to multipolar world. Liberal Arts and Social Sciences International Journal (LASSIJ), 1(1), 49-61. DOI:

Naidu, S. (2008, September 3). Africa’s New Development Partners: China and India: Challenging the Status Quo? Retrieved from:

Novati, G. P. C. & Montanini, M. (2016). Energy and the regional players: The odd rivalry between the EU and China in Africa. In: Godzimirski, J. M. (ed.) EU Leadership in Energy and Environmental Governance. International Political Economy Series. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 135-155. DOI:

Pelssis, A. (2014). The forum on China-Africa cooperation, ideas and aid: National interest(s) or strategic partnership? Insight of Africa, 6(2), 113-130. DOI:

Rehman, A. U., Hakim, A., Khan, K., & Khan, I. U. (2018). Role of CPEC in Development of Trade, Transport and Economy of Pakistan. Romanian Journal of Transport Infrastructure, 7(1), 77-92. DOI:

Shelton, G. (2008). South Africa and China: A strategic Partnership?’ In: Alden, L. & Oliveira, S. D. (eds). China returns to Africa: A superpower and continent embrace. London: Hurst.

Sow, M. (2018). Figures of the week: Chinese investment in Africa. Brookings assessment and analysis. Avaialbel at:

Sun, Y. (2014, April). Africa in China's foreign policy. Thornton China Centre and Africa Growth Initiative. Brookings:

Sun, Y. (2018, September 5). China’s 2018 financial commitments to Africa: Adjustment and recalibration. Brookings; Africa in Focus.

Sun, Y. (2019, February 4). China’s changing approach to Africa. Brookings, Africa in Focus.

Tanimoune, N. A. & Renard, M. F. (2011). FDI convergence and spatial dependence between Chinese provinces. Retrieved from HAL:

The State Council China. (2013). China-Africa economic and trade cooperation. The State Council; The People's Republic of Chian.

Thompson, R. (2012). Assessing the Chinese influence in Ghana, Angola, and Zimbabwe: The impact of politics, partners, and petro. Stanford University: Centre for International Security and Cooperation.

Witney, S. & Wiegert, J. (2018, April 16). Contemplating in Africa:China the European Union and the United States. Brookings; Africa in Focus.

Zafar, A. (2017). The growing relationship between China and Sub-Saharan Africa: Macroeconomic, trade, investment, and aid links. The World Bank Research Observer, 22(1), 103-130. DOI:



How to Cite

Ahmad, S., Gull, A. ., & Irfan, S. . (2019). Sino-African Relations: Economic Opportunities and Challenges for China. Liberal Arts and Social Sciences International Journal (LASSIJ), 3(1), 61–73.