Africa is one of the fastest urbanising continents with pace of migration to urban centres faster than India and China. By 2034, it will have the world's largest working age population. Besides, the continent has at least 46 per cent of the world's supply of manganese, while 50 per cent of the world's cobalt reserves are estimated to be in the Democratic Republic of Congo alone.
Africa's Coltan (columbite-tantalites) resources are also of significant interest to the world, as the mineral is integral in electronics, including cell phones.
The continent's fastest growing sub-region is East Africa, whose countries including several emerging economies such as Ethiopia, Djibouti, Tanzania, and Kenya.
China has had long-standing relations with Africa, having slowly and steadily built up its strategic and economic presence over the years. Unfettered by public opinion back home, it has always managed to establish relationships with governments which were actively ostracised by the West.
"The absence of other major powers in the region, coupled with the internecine conflicts and political instability, has made East Africa a particularly favoured region for China to deepen its influence and establish a stronghold," said a senior government official.
Over the last two decades, China has established a significant economic presence, and its lucrative economic investment packages, flexible political approach, and focused big-ticket development projects under Belt and Road Initiative to...
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