rrotberg has written 180 posts for Africa and Asia: The Key Issues

Killing Off Africa’s Iconic Animals

  Many of the iconic fauna that are indelibly associated with Africa, and that attract so many local citizens and foreign tourists alike, no longer spread limitlessly across the vast savannahs of the mid-continent . Nor are many of the larger animals of the un- broken forest often visible . This century’s massive escalation of … Continue reading

Africa’s Need for Power

Africa is desperately short of electricity and an array of distinguished Chinese firms are helping the nations of Africa to remedy their power needs by constructing new or renovating old generating stations, erecting more than 300 dams, and extending transmission facilities. Most of the numerous projects involving Chinese concerns in these sectors are successful, especially … Continue reading

China and the Loss of Africa’s Timber

Africa’s massive deforestation, a dangerous result caused by population pressure and China’s increasing demand for lumber, is helping to accelerate the harmful effects of climate change, flooding, and drought. Timber, mostly un-processed whole logs, is Africa’s third largest export to China, after oil and minerals. To save Africa from wanton impoverishment, China will need to … Continue reading

China and Africa’s Vanishing Mammals: Part Three

Asian demand for African wild mammals, as we saw in Parts One and Two, is strong. Asians covet African ivory and rhinoceroses’ horns, lion claws, pangolin scales, and many other animal parts so that they can be used to make traditional medicinal remedies – supposed cures for a range of maladies. Ivory is also desired … Continue reading

How South Africa’s new president can restore legitimacy

Because President Cyril Ramaphosa’s new leadership of South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) was only narrowly validated when citizens voted in last week’s parliamentary election, he will have to work even harder than ever to bolster legitimacy. He won last week’s national parliamentary election with a reduced majority and a far-less ringing endorsement of … Continue reading

China and Africa’d Vanishing Mammals: Part Two

China and Vietnam are the world’s largest active consumers of elephant tusks and rhinoceros horn for prestige carvings and for medicinal purposes, as discussed in Part One of this series of articles about the enormous poaching of African animals.  There is also a Chinese and Vietnamese market for lion and leopard claws, for jewelry and … Continue reading

China and Africa’s Vanishing Mammals: Part One

China has banned the import of ivory and barred the trading of ivory, but still the poaching of elephants for their tusks and the trafficking of other mammal parts continues, with Chinese entrepreneurs paying African people to kill iconic big species. More can surely be done by the authorities in China, Hong Kong, and Vietnam … Continue reading

Strengthening Network Reception in Africa

Given the controversial attempt by the Trump administration to prevent European and other nations from allowing Huawei to build their much anticipated 5G networks, it is notable that 70 percent of Africa’s 4G networks have been built by that Chinese telecommunications giant. Huawei has also constructed compact cell towers wherever it has built out networks. … Continue reading

China’s Belt and Road in Africa

China’s Belt and Road Initiative reaches to the coasts of northeastern Africa and to Djibouti and Ethiopia, echoing China’s voyages during the Ming imperial times. It holds strategic promise for China and positive developmental potential for parts of Africa that today have limited resources and, were it not for the Belt and Road Initiative, particularly … Continue reading

Mnangagwa Should be Bold Instead of Fiddling with the Petrol Price

  When economically challenged rulers try to run nations, especially fragile ones, they easily make mistakes. Demonstrators have taken to the streets of Khartoum and Omdurman for weeks to protest Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir’s removal of subsidies that have long kept bread and fuel affordable. They seek his ouster. Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan insists on … Continue reading

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