Egypt has been planning to move its capital from Cairo for a while, but building a new city is no laughing matter, especially given the costs of such an enterprise. You need a lot of good reasons to go ahead with such a plan and suddenly Egypt, like many others in Africa before, found itself with 20 billion good reasons to do exactly that. Yes, 20 billion dollars is what it will cost building the new unnamed city and they will be provided by “The China Fortune Land Development Company”. If the People’s Republic of China were a private company, their slogan would sound something like this: “Are you an African country in need for infrastructures? Put your worries to rest, we’ll take care of it!”.
Egypt, like the vast majority of all other African countries, enjoys a skin-tight relationship with China, the continent needs heavy investments and only Beijing is willing to commit as much as needed if not more. Many have called this wave of investments from China a “21st century colonization” of sort: We build them roads and get their oil. This extremely simplistic way of summing up a situation such as this one has its merits, but it also fails to capture the wider picture. African countries are indeed benefitting from Chinese “affections”, maybe not in the way they were imagining (jobs the Chinese create in Africa are for Chinese workers, not locals), but, for a continent in such dire need for infrastructures and investments, the Beijing’s yuans are manna from heaven. That between China and Africa is one of the strongest political and economic bonds in the world.
To put things into perspective: Taiwan is, according to Beijing, a Chinese territory occupied by a non-official government in Taipei. They are an enemy, a thorn in mainland China’s side. This is also the opinion of almost every other country in the world. Even though now many have unofficial relationships with Taiwan, they still all recognize the government of the People’s Republic of China as the only true government. Now I’ll reveal to you how many countries in Africa have any relationship, official and non official, with Taiwan. The answer is three. Out of 54. Talk about a strong political statement…
African governments are so faithful, and thankful, to Beijing that almost every future African leader is generally sent to study in China, all expenses paid by the Chinese government, so that they can grow close to who will probably be in the future their greatest ally. China’s greatest earnings for their investments in Africa are political, not economical.
Knowing that no matter the situation, or the assembly, you will always have at least 50 votes in your favor is worth almost as much as all the oil in the world.