Top 10 African Countries Indebted To China



                              By Damilola Bello

Nigeria and nine other African countries owe China the sum of $64.6B with Angola owing one-third of the money, amounting to $21.0B. Nigeria is ranked sixth on the ladder of debtor countries to China with $4.3B, after Egypt which is owing the sum of $5.2B.

According to the Visual Capitalist which ranked the 20 top countries indebted to China as of 2022, Ethiopia $6.8B, Kenya $6.7B, Zambia $6.1B, Cote d’Ivoire $3.9B, Cameroon$3.8B, South Africa$3.4B, Congo$3.4B.

The data highlighted by analysts stated that of the top 20 indebted countries across the globe to China, Pakistan and Angola have the largest debts to China by a wide margin. Both countries have taken billions in loans from China for various infrastructure and energy projects. Soon after in March 2024, Angola negotiated a lower monthly debt payment with its biggest Chinese creditor, China Development Bank (CDB).

China has provided developing countries with over $1 trillion in committed funding through its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), a massive economic development project aimed at enhancing trade between China and countries across Asia, Africa, and Europe.

Many believe that this lending spree could be an issue soon. According to a 2023 report by Aid Data, 80% of these loans involve countries in financial distress, raising concerns about whether participating nations will ever be able to repay their debts. While China claims the BRI is a driver of global development, critics in the West have long warned that the BRI employs debt-trap diplomacy, a tactic where one country uses loans to gain influence over another.

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