IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

China-Africa’s Emerging Economic Links: A review under the Core-Periphery perspective


  • Maswana, Jean-Claude


This essay has explored the validity of Marxist dependency theories in the context of the emerging China-Africa trade and economic relations. Whereas dependency theory assumes that economic domination runs across north-south geoeconomic patterns, this discussion has shown that the China-Africa economic links represent a distinct south-south dialectic occurring in an emerging new global economic configuration marked by a technology gap. Therefore, the discussion fails to support the idea that China’s involvement in Africa is of a conventional center-periphery type; which suggests the existence of nonexploitative, tough dependent, trade features. This dependence implies that external factors and decisions (included those related to China) also determine the real level of development in the Africa. Also worth mentioning is that for the first time Africa is drastically shifting its trade pattern away from its colonial framework: it too is becoming linked to a rapidly changing economy. Such a shift means that China’s own constant economic and social structural changes make it easy for Africa to adjust to the emerging new global economic order. At the same time, the China-Africa relationship is marked by unavoidable dialectic tensions like labor and competition issues. Even though synergies can be created by considering China’s legitimate interests in Africa and Africa’s own legitimate rights, no matter how well-intentioned China is, Africa must still generate its own technological capacities and rid itself of its legendary rampant corruption. Thus, both sides must admit that there will be no long-run benefit unless each contributes to the emergence of a new economic configuration that is deeply rooted not in mutual but in common or joint interests.

Suggested Citation

  • Maswana, Jean-Claude, 2007. "China-Africa’s Emerging Economic Links: A review under the Core-Periphery perspective," MPRA Paper 5520, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:5520

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: original version
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Clementi, F. & Gallegati, M., 2005. "Power law tails in the Italian personal income distribution," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 350(2), pages 427-438.
    2. William R. Cline, 2004. "Trade Policy and Global Poverty," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 379.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    China; Africa; Dependency theories; Economic Development; Globalization;

    JEL classification:

    • O19 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - International Linkages to Development; Role of International Organizations
    • F59 - International Economics - - International Relations, National Security, and International Political Economy - - - Other

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:5520. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Joachim Winter). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.