Accepted paper:

Steaming Ahead- Chinese Funded Railways in Africa

Author:

Sharon Bar-David (Ben Gurion University of the Negev)

Paper short abstract:

I intent to compare three railway projects over time in attempt to establish theoretical framework for how China uses the railway projects as a way of establishing influence in Africa. I would like to find out what really motivates China to conduct so many railroads projects across Africa.

Paper long abstract:

In recent years China has been shifting its economic policy towards Africa. Instead of importing raw material from Africa and exporting finished products, China is focusing on investments in transportation, construction and infrastructure. In this context and in light of the great importance that China is granting the "One Belt One Road" initiative, the significance of African states such as Ethiopia, Tanzania and Kenya is constantly raising. It is indeed well known that an existence of a railway is a crucial factor for the development of an economy. A modern as well as efficient train system exhilarates the economy, creates job opportunities, facilitates transfer of technology, communication and knowledge flow and brings prosperity to an entire region. Tazara, Ethiopia- Djibouti line and Mombasa-Nairobi line, are only three of China's major transportation projects in East Africa. China has been founding and building railways across Africa in order to facilitate the transfer and distribution of Chinese goods across Africa. However there are more reasons to that. In my research I intent to compare three railway projects over time in attempt to establish theoretical framework for how China uses the railway projects as a way of establishing influence in Africa. I would like to find out what really motivates China to conduct so many railroads projects across Africa.

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