If China-Africa engagement continues into the future in such an explosive fashion, there will be large communities of newly arrived Chinese traders, engineers and manufacturing professionals from Cairo to Addis Ababa, from Lagos to Luanda, from Harare to Maputo to Capetown.
New Chinese enterprises will launch plants for “local products,” including clothes, pots and pans, plastic buckets, watches, shoes, soft drinks, packaged convenience foods, soap and cosmetics and low-end mobile phones. They could also make and sell consumer electronics, like localized versions of MIT Media Lab OLPC laptops and PCs, and white goods, like televisions, air-conditioners, fans, rice cookers and refrigerators. There will be factories for cement and steel beams for new apartment and office buildings, for furniture and solar power panels. Employing thousands of new plant workers, a line of Tata’s Nano-like inexpensive car and utility truck/SUVs could be produced in South Africa for export throughout the continent.
Simultaneously, these new Chinese-funded projects would require IT support, specialized oil drilling expertise, design services, project management skills and factory floor manufacturing equipment--in short, a new Chinese-led African business and technological eco-system with an appetite for a wide range of products and services. read more