Why China is rolling the dice in Zimbabwe

via Why China is rolling the dice in Zimbabwe – Nehanda Radio Feb 13, 2014 by Sophie Song

Turned away by western governments and international institutions, the government of Zimbabwe is looking to China to help fund its $27 billion plan to rebuild its economy.

That fund is more than twice the size of the economy of the impoverished southern African nation, the Africa Report wrote on Wednesday. The five-year plan will seek to improve basic services and revitalize the slowing economy.

While the agreement has not been officially inked, People’s Daily reported on Wednesday that the loan will amount to $23 million, earmarked for the construction of clinics, primary and secondary schools in resettled areas acquired under the land reform program, as well as boreholes drilling and acquiring meteorological equipment.

The Zimbabwean minister of Zimbabwe, Patrick Chinamasa, travelled to Beijing for a week last month to negotiate for money the government needs.

“During the visit we agreed that the government of the People’s Republic of China and the government of Zimbabwe are working towards a comprehensive financial package and (we) committed ourselves to finalizing the matter within three months,” Chinamasa said.

Zimbabwe had not been able to obtain funds from western governments and funding institutions such as the World Bank, as it had previously failed to repay billions of dollars in debt. Since 2005, the nation has adopted a “Look East” policy as a result, relying increasingly on emerging Asian economies to offset sanctions from traditional western partners, People’s Daily reported.

China, on the other hand, is interested in the rich mineral resource in Zimbabwe, including the world’s second largest reserves of platinum, huge deposits of gold, alluvial diamonds, coal and chrome, according to the Africa Report.

China had previously lent nearly $700 million in loans to Zimbabwe, in March 2011, the biggest package to date. In addition, China’s Export Import Bank agreed to lend Zimbabwe $320 million to expand its Kariba hydro-power plant last November.

In 2013, bilateral trade between the two countries has grown over $1.2 billion, and China has become Zimbabwe’s top foreign investor, according to People’s Daily. International Business Times



  • comment-avatar
    die groot wyt aap 9 years ago

    if China is “rolling the dice” the game is rigged and the dice are loaded.

    Sweet dreams comrades, sweet dreams

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    Peter tosh 9 years ago


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    Nyoni 9 years ago

    If China is so interested in Zimbabwe given its wartime links why are they so quiet on the corruption episodes or are they part of the stealth game to acquire our country. WE KNOW THE GAME TO MA ZANU AND WE WONT ALLOW YOU TO SELL OUR COUNTRY TO NEW COLONIÁLISTS. PASI NE Zanu. PAMBERI NE ZIMBABWE.

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    Wilbert Mukori 9 years ago

    Mugabe has been looking East for decades now and yet the East has failed to step in and pour in money at anywhere near the same rate and amounts as the West had done. The Zimbabwe government fell out with the West because the regime in a black-hole – it sucks up everything within its reach and nothing ever comes out again.

    Mugabe is good at borrowing from others but does not pay back his debts. He is the modern day Unoka in Things Fall Apart in Chinua Achebe. The Chinese know he is a bad debtor, they are pretty shrewd.

    The only reason the Chinese are giving him anything is because they are getting very generous deals from him. And to ensure they get a generous offer they dangle the loan to Mugabe for years just to wet his appetite and when they final give him something it a drop feed.

    Chinamasa went to China looking for $27 billion and they gave him a token $23 million plus a promise to finalize something substantive “in three months”. They know the Zimbabwe economy is in free fall and the Zimbabwean public are getting increasingly restless. Three months is light years away, and time is the one luxury the regime does not have.

    In three months the Chinese will offer Mugabe no where near the $27 billion he asked for in demand this, that and the other all at knock-down give away prices. No wonder Mugabe was venting his anger at his friends in the East for making him “wait” for every little or nothing!

    Beggars cannot be choosers; at least if you do not like paying back then your choice of whom you beg from may well be left to one!

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      Nkiwane (M'kiwa) 9 years ago

      But surely he has a sense of shame himself?!?!? Does he not feel ashamed begging others for donations and money all the time? And the country being so poor that he must accept AID from Britain and America even! (for school fees and ARVs). They are his arch enemies!

      Maybe I am a proud person, but I am uncomfortable accepting charity and I won’t take a loan unless it’s absolutely necessary. I’d rather work and try to improve my life.

      Where’s the pride gone?!? Or am I thinking of things incorrectly here?

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        If you understand their perverted logic, it is easy to understand why they shamelessly beg from the bleeding hearts club in the west. They love to play the race and “white guilt” card. They think that the free world owes them a living.

        They have shame and subtlety goes right over there heads. They do not know how to build. They only know how to destroy and it has worked perfectly for them.

        If you destroy food security and create starvation, the west comes in with food aid to feed the people but ZanuPF make sure that they control food distribution. ONLY THEIR SUPPORTERS GET FOOD, THE REST CAN GO AND STARVE. It’s a very practical move because if you are poor and destitute and starving, join ZanuPF and you can eat. Whatever they have destroyed have been done to create the right conditions to keep people oppressed enough to feel so hopelessly helpless that they will not rise up and overthrow the military junta that now rules Zimbabwe

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    John Thomas 9 years ago

    Zimbabwe is a tiny spec in the world. If we do not lift ourselves nobody else will do it for us.

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    So that’s why Chinamasa is telling the civil servants that they will have their salary increase at the end of April. That’s in 3 months! He doesn’t yet know what he’ll get from the Chinese, if anything, but he’s already as good as spent it all already.

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    Rukweza 9 years ago

    Then you hear people say lobhengula sold out,what do you say guys about your brothers doing it now?

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    alec chikati 9 years ago

    Zim inotoshuva kupiwa mari kubva kuEurope. Haasi mashura here?Tinoda rubatsirwo rwei isu tine madiamonds, gold uye musangano wakawina zvine musindo. Toshaya mari sei?Look East Policy yatadza kupa chipundutso here?Vakomana tisadaro kani.Chitanda che 800 meters relay chiri mumaoko! Ngavamhanye nacho, zvinoita sezvo vari voga pari nhasi.Nayo relay ye800 meters.2018 hakusi kure.ngavapanane pachavo.Mutambo!Hunzi tokuvakirai mabridge, povo yoti kuno hakuna rwizi, zvikanzi tinochera rwizi.Wazvifunga zvatokwana musoro, zvatoita.Ngavapiwe nguva.

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    “This country hs gone to the Dogs” -Tekere

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    gorongoza 9 years ago

    How much is the govt wage bill for the month? is 23mill anything to celebrate about esp with the new informal economy being ushered by Chinamasa wehere the govt will continue to see dwindling fiscal revenue?

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    Zimbabwe is a Chinese colony sold to China by ZanuPF.

    All Zimbabweans can look forward to much more poverty as China sucks Zimbabwe’s natural resources dry in the years ahead.

    As sure as the sun rises, the rich chefs will get richer and the masses will sink deeper and deeper into to dire poverty unless leaders who call themselves democrats start showing some back bone and start rallying the people to rise up and deal decisively with ZanuPF and in turn eject China from the face of the map in Zimbabwe.

    The situation is now so serious that no way can the people wait for another stolen election in 2018.

    The time is NOW!

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    mkmatsi 9 years ago

    china is their to take our diamonds.china is selfish it even failed to help its neighbor during flooding last year.thanks to america and japan who helped them.china is their to promote corrupt zimbabwe government so that they will continue winning government tenders and employ Chinese on the expense of zimbabweans

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    Tongoona 9 years ago

    ZANU PF and its government are sellouts. How can you mortgage virtually all our mineral wealth worth trillions to the Chinese for a pittance 27 billion. Are you out of your mind? Besides you gave big chunks of our land to China to palm grease them for when you go to them to supplicate for loans. What is there left for us the indigenous of this country? So, you think the Chinese are better colonizers than the west? Listen and listen carefully, we will not allow you to sell us to China. Zimbabweans under the circumstances, it is for the good of us all and posterity to be China-phobic. The Chinese must be sent packing before damage is done. Chinese are a very dangerous species of people good at nothing but robbing Africans of their God given wealth. To hell with the Chinese in Zimbabwe.

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    The Chinese are nobody’s fool. Look at North Korea. You would think the Chinese would be there helping their Allies but no North Korea sinks deeper and deeper into trouble. The Chinese are aware that the North Korean economy is a lost cause. The Zimbabwe situation is a bit easier for the as long as they take the whole cake without the populace seeing they can always return a quarter of it like it was always from them. They know that if the give Mugabe full backing a new Government might not honour any deals done by Mugabe because they are illegitimate anyway. What they will do is take more than they will give. At least the western companies provided jobs and maintained the infrastructure. The rebuilding process in Zimbabwe will be slow and painful but as to all things an end must come this Government will end. I have heard people saying that Zimbabweans are cowards. It is easy to speak from afar. The Zimbabwe situation is complicate by the fact that all except for Botswana the country is surrounded by countries that support this dictator. The Rhodesia situation was a bit different in that they were surrounded by hostile countries who would harbour political refugees and combatants against Rhodesia. It is not cowardice. Every pub or public place you go to in Zimbabwe you have undercover CIO or informers. The only time people can say what they want is on forums like these, and we still have to use nom de plumes.

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    Nyathi Mdluli 9 years ago

    Zanu must sell Mashonaland and leave matebeleland alone. whatever moneis obtained on those deals is used to develop mashonaland. Since 1980 there is no single development done in Matebeleland and Midlands. It was done by Rhodesian government. Mugabe and his zanu allies are too old to take sound decision. so they sold it to Asia long ago. but Zanu hands of Matebeleland. keep your mighty Harare.

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    Only Fools 9 years ago

    Zimbabwe has always been a begging bowl. For some reason the Government have the idea they can put their hands out and the world should fill them?? Well China don’t deal that way. China will take a thousand fold what Zimbabwe has to offer. Remember the fool Mugarbage promised them at end of war to repay them.

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    Saddened 9 years ago

    China has not got to where it is economically, by being careless with their money. So for ZPF to expect they will receive anywhere near this amount is just a pipe dream which will just become another excuse for their non-delivery as government.
    The ZPF government probably received more than $ 27B from 1980 to 2000 and what have they to show for it except their own fat bank accounts, a ruined country & a very despondent population.

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    Come on guys, would u be grumbling if the credit loan or credit facility was coming from the EU or super Washington? The real issue is that wen the money starts coming in, it wil likely be misused or misdirected to pay for nefarious political projects i.e. Buying Green bombers uniforms and paying them allowances; funding regionalism; buying weapons of mass suppression or funding factions especialy that Chinamasa and Johno of the infamous Tsholotsho declaration (“attempted coup”) are involved!

    China is very helpful in Africa, much beta than ur EUs n USAs whose aid drips of blood e.g. Libya, somalia, sudan, afghanistan, Iraqi, Mali, Chad- the list is endless. We must appreciate Chinese efforts! The real problem is the misuse by Mugabe’s tribal hounds not the credit line perse! Bayete Nyongolo!

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    maneccs 8 years ago

    the chinese are rather exploiting the resources than coming to our rescue