Africa Reimagined at the first China-Africa Economic Trade Expo in Africa – the beginning of a new opportunity for enhanced Africa to China trade

On May 9-11, Africa Reimagined (AR) organized for seven premium East-African brands – spanning diverse sectors such as fashion & accessories, food & beverage, and skincare – to join the first African edition of the China-Africa Economic and Trade Expo (CAETE). Working in  collaboration with the International Trade Centre (ITC), our aim with the AR […]

African Members’ Position at WTO’s 13th Ministerial Conference

This briefing reviews African positions put forward at The World Trade Organisation (WTO)’s 13th Ministerial Conference (MC13) earlier this year and the potential impact of the meetings on internal and external African trade. It will also examine Africa’s broader relationship with the WTO and to what degree African members are able to participate in and […]


Starting on November 19, Houthi attacks and counter-strikes on commercial ships transiting through the Bab al-Mandab strait along the Red Sea have been a major disruptor of international trade through this vital artery. A 32km wide channel connecting the Red Sea to the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean, the strait is a strategic maritime chokepoint. The route […]

What South African Rooibos Tea Can Tell Us About Africa-China Trade Flows

Last month, China’s General Administration of Customs released its customs data for 2023. The data showed that China’s total trade with Africa grew a modest 1.5 percent in 2023, reaching $282.1 billion, but Africa’s trade deficit with China widened. While Chinese exports to Africa reached $173 billion, an increase of 7.5 percent over 2022, Africa’s exports to China dropped by […]

It’s time for African countries to shape the WTO, not just sit in it

At the 50th anniversary celebration of the origins of the international trade system in 1998 in Geneva, Nelson Mandela in his speech said: “The developing countries must accept that we want to be fully part of the WTO, and that includes improving the management of the world trading system to ensure that our economies do […]

Not Just an African Tale: China’s Trade Slowdown from a Global Perspective

In recent weeks, a flurry of articles appeared pointing out that Africa’s biggest bilateral trade partner, China, had significantly slowed its imports from Africa. To prevent another oversimplified doom and gloom narrative about Africa from circulating, we decided to break down the numbers to get a deeper understanding of this phenomenon – something we continuously […]

CIIE: Paving the Way for More African Products in China?

The China International Import Expos (CIIE) has proven to be a great opportunity for African businesses to gain access to China’s vast consumer market, but is it enough? Most African products that have been displayed are agricultural products which limits the CIIE’s impact on lifting African economies to a higher level and showcasing the true […]

Power plays: Why are a wave of African leaders visiting China, despite geopolitics?

Following China’s lifting of its zero-Covid policy in January 2023, there has been a flurry of African leadership visits to China. Within eight months, China has already received seven African Presidents from Tanzania, Algeria, Eritrea, Mauritania, Burundi, Benin and Zambia and five foreign ministers from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Sierra Leone […]