"Agriculture is regarded as a critical tool to help alleviate poverty among African populations. Domestic and international investors have focused on ensuring domestic food security by harvesting untapped agricultural potential. This has led to growing concern as to whether or not international investments in African agriculture are solely for export, and how much they (directly or indirectly) benefit local population. China’s involvement in African agriculture, similar to its general economic engagement in Africa, has surged in recent years."
"This paper aims to contribute to the discourse on strategies, achievements and challenges of China and Africa agricultural cooperation while examining the relevance and implications of China’s motives in Africa’s food security concern."
"The author argues that China’s engagement with African agriculture represents an opportunity for African states to gain some form of partnership for development, an alternative that promises mutual benefit. Regional stakeholders interviewed in the course of this research believe and share the sentiment that China has done more to alleviate poverty in Africa than may have been attempted by traditional donors. They suggest that Chinese engagement might be more meaningful if they included a form of governance system which monitors these investments to enable Africans to measure the impact on rural development and livelihoods."
"Regional stakeholders maintain that Chinese investments have the potential to change agriculture permanently on the continent; as investing in agriculture presents a more feasible path to reducing poverty and hunger in Africa. However, while Chinese companies’ growing interest in the potential for profit in African agriculture is often welcomed by African governments, who see both public and private gains, there remains risk of increasing vulnerability of traditional subsistence farmers and smallholders." (Eldis Agriculture and Food Reporter, 17 November 2014)
Rex Ukaejiofo, China-Africa agricultural co-operation Mutual benefits or self-interest? (Centre for Chinese Studies, University of Stellenbosch) 2014. Download (pdf file 14kb)