China-Africa ‘trade week’ begins today

Government officials, investors and suppliers from China and Africa will today begin their annual Trade Week over videoconference, in a

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Photo: Ng Han Guan

Government officials, investors and suppliers from China and Africa will today begin their annual Trade Week over videoconference, in a show case of the trade partners’ enduring commercial cooperation despite pandemic conditions.

This year’s China-Africa Trade Week provides opportunities for businesses from China and Africa to network and demonstrate new products in consumer goods and technology. Since the United Arab Emirates hosted China’s first Trade Week in 2013, Beijing has launched events in Kenya and other nations that have joined the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

A key element of this year’s Trade Week will include the Zhejiang Export Online Fair, co-sponsored by the Chindia Regional Exchanges and Trade Investment Centre, which promotes China-India trade ties.

The global economic downturn induced by the COVID-19 pandemic has cast a recent shadow over China’s strategy of high-volume lending and investment to its African trade partners. Beijing has already adjusted its BRI planning accordingly, and it will likely use this year’s Trade Week to lean into a push for the expansion of 5G technology in its African BRI partners in order to bolster its own contracting economy.

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