Mwaniki, D. M. (2024). The Changing Dynamics of Cooperation Between China and African Countries: A Global Public-Goods Approach. BRIQ Belt and Road Initiative Quarterly, 5(2), 154-171.


This paper examines the impact of China’s emergence as a global power on various African nations, emphasizing the provision of “global public goods” as a key mechanism for fostering development. Global public goods are defined as those with benefits extending to all citizens worldwide. Employing a desktop literature review methodology, the paper conducts an in-depth examination through a process tracing of China’s major initiatives labeled as global public goods from 2000 to 2023. Notable initiatives include the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, the Belt and Road Initiative, Global Development Initiative, Global Security Initiative, Global Civilization Initiative, and the Outlook on Peace and Development in the Horn of Africa. These initiatives have played a pivotal role in transforming Africa into a hub of development by leveraging mechanisms such as government concessional loans, grants, aid, commercial financial institution credit funds, special investment and financing funds, and promoting direct Chinese investments in Africa. Despite these positive outcomes, China’s growing influence in Africa, particularly through the provision of global public goods, has elicited diverse reactions, especially from traditional Western partners of African nations. Accusations of entangling Africa in a “debt trap” and other myths have been a recurring critique. Consequently, this paper aims to explore the evolving dynamics of cooperation between China and African countries within the framework of a public-goods approach.