Japan and China in Africa

by Developed Africa 16. January 2014 09:00

Both Japan and China's investment and work in Africa has increased in recent years, but it is causing tension between the two over motives.

Both of course argue that their involvement in the area is purely for development reasons, but each is accusing the other of more selfish motives.

These accusations have followed the first visit to Africa of a Japanese Prime Minister for 8 years; Shinzo Abe is travelling to Africa in order to promote and endorse Japanese investment into resources across the continent. This move has led to Chinese claims that Japan is:

courting African support for a place on the United Nations Security Council"

 In return, Japan have accused China of using gifts to get in well with African leaders, perhaps allowing them more leverage in their deals in various countries.

Despite these accusations, it is clear that the two countries are making significant moves throughout Africa to ensure that they are at the centre of investment and development. China has been see to do this for a while now, whereas Japan's moves onto the continent have become more prevalant more recently. 

Over the past decade China has leapfrogged over its Asian neighbour as a global economic force as well as Africa's main trade partner"

But now it is clear that Japan is making efforts to bridge the gap, as we can see from the Prime Minister's trip to three countries, which incidentally are among China's economic allies. As well as the doubling of loans for African development from to $2 billion.

It is possible that this could lead to tensions between Japan and China, and is a situation that will be closely monitored for the forseeable future.

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