That’s a key difference between the US and China in their approaches to Africa and elsewhere. The US likes to attach strings, the Chinese just
want to do business. And that’s why China’s economic footprint in Africa
dwarfs that of the US. Indeed, it surpassed the US as the continent’s largest trading partner in 2009.
Africa still offers promise to both superpowers, one waxing, one waning, as a region not yet fully developed but boasting many
fast-growing economies. In their pursuit of economic gain, the US and
China eye Africa as a fertile land of opportunity. As they race to
establish economic control on the continent, it is important to
carefully examine the strategies they’re employing.
While their economic goals are similar, their terms of engagement are diametrically opposed.