Africa is putting up a strong show against China as the continent seeks to stand up against the dragon in the backdrop of unprecedented Chinese investment thus paving the way for the infamous Chinese debt-trap diplomacy to China committing atrocities against the African community residing in the country. There has been a complete breakdown of trust between China and Africa and India sensing an opening, is now intensifying its diplomacy with the African nations.
External Affairs Minister is working overtime to ensure better co-operation between India and the African countries, as the continent witnesses growing anger against China.
Unlike China which is resorting to crisis profiteering amidst a China-made pandemic, India is sending medical supplies to countries across the globe with the African countries also among the beneficiaries of India’s benevolence.
Evidently, India is keeping its eye open as African countries contemplate cutting economic ties with China in the backdrop of the pandemic and the subsequent racist attacks on the African community residing in China. The entire continent has witnessed protests calling for a complete cutting off of economic ties with China as the latter often approves a large amount of loans with stringent conditions which almost makes it impossible for the poor African nations to pay back. In return, the defaulting African countries have to hand over important assets to China to compensate for Chinese loans.
The racial profiling and targeting of Africans in China is the racism of the worst kind and can be described as peculiar to this part of the world in today’s time. The racist attacks against the African community in China where they are forcefully kicked out by the landlords are compulsorily tested and forced to go into quarantine seems to have been the final straw for the African nations as they seek to force China to mend its ways.
The pandemic has completely obliterated any positive sentiment that China had able to garner in the African continent. The discussion in Africa is no longer about China’s loans and donations to them but instead, they are seeking to address the elephant in the room and wondering whether China will write off African debts?
Recently, Tanzanian President cancelled $10 billion Chinese loans which were signed by his predecessor, as he claimed that the conditions of the loan can only be accepted by a “drunkard” person.
India has sensed an opportunity and has acted quickly to assure the African nations that they will always have a friend in India. It remains to be seen whether, after the pandemic, India will assume a significant role in Africa to act as an antidote to Chinese presence.