News / Africa

US-China Competition Plays Out in Tanzania

US-China Competition Plays Out in Tanzaniai
X
June 30, 2013 6:41 PM
U.S. President Barack Obama’s visit to Tanzania as the last stop of his African tour, underscores a silent competition with China to tap the country’s growing economic potential. VOA East Africa correspondent Gabe Joselow has more from Dar es Salaam.

US-China Competition Plays Out in Tanzania

Gabe Joselow
— U.S. President Barack Obama’s visit to Tanzania as the last stop of his African tour, underscores a silent competition with China to tap the country’s growing economic potential.

It’s always a hard day’s work at the Kivukoni fish market in Dar es Salaam.  This place was once the center of business and trade in the city by the sea.  But that has all changed.  Tanzania’s economy has a 7% growth rate and the country is quickly developing.  Competition to get into the market is heating up.

Chinese companies are already at the forefront, leading construction of buildings and infrastructure.

The most frequently used words and phrases in President Obama's speech in Cape Town on June 30, 2013. Courtesy of wordle.netThe most frequently used words and phrases in President Obama's speech in Cape Town on June 30, 2013. Courtesy of wordle.net
x
The most frequently used words and phrases in President Obama's speech in Cape Town on June 30, 2013. Courtesy of wordle.net
The most frequently used words and phrases in President Obama's speech in Cape Town on June 30, 2013. Courtesy of wordle.net
But the United States is also looking for a stronger foothold, a priority emphasized by U.S. President Barack Obama’s visit to the country.

Lead economist for the World Bank in Tanzania Jacques Moriset says the competition can be a good thing. “In my view, it’s a benefit, it’s a huge opportunity for Tanzania, I mean I strongly believe in the basic principle of economy: competition is good.  Of course competition has to go with transparency which is the main challenge now," he said.

The most frequently used words and phrases in Chinese President Xi Jinping's is from a speech he gave in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on March 25, 2013. Courtesy of wordle.netThe most frequently used words and phrases in Chinese President Xi Jinping's is from a speech he gave in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on March 25, 2013. Courtesy of wordle.net
x
The most frequently used words and phrases in Chinese President Xi Jinping's is from a speech he gave in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on March 25, 2013. Courtesy of wordle.net
The most frequently used words and phrases in Chinese President Xi Jinping's is from a speech he gave in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on March 25, 2013. Courtesy of wordle.net
China and the United States have a very different approach to aid and investment.  When Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Tanzania in March he emphasized his country would always offer assistance with no political strings attached.

American public investment however, is often tied to economic and political reforms.

Rehema Twalib, head of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) office in Tanzania, says what is really important is that any reform helps the population. "Good governance is a good ingredient for development, we’ve just seen it. If you have transparent policies, you make your citizens participate in programs they feel like they own them, it’s good. If you have predictable policies, it’s good for investors," he said.

China and the U.S. both have an eye on Tanzania’s natural resources, with U.S. companies in particular showing an interest in natural gas and oil exploration.

But growth in that sector rarely translates into jobs or any great improvement in the lives of citizens.

It is the hope of businesses here that new investment will bring with it a transfer of skills and knowledge.

Bhakti Shah is the President of the American Chamber of Commerce in Tanzania. “When you look at the U.S. government, it is the engine of the private sector so all the intellectual knowledge that the U.S. government has we hope that Tanzania will benefit from, that is how to have a booming private sector," he said.

The United States has downplayed any competition with China for access to African markets, but it is falling behind in the numbers.

China says it is trading nearly $200 billion a year with Africa, which is about twice as much as the United States.

As African economies become among the fastest growing in the world, we will see if the U.S. can get itself a stronger foothold.

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: joezhifu from: Singapore
July 01, 2013 2:55 AM
My estimate is that the future of growth between Africa and China will grow four times faster than Africa and USA. Just my feeling.


by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
June 30, 2013 8:05 PM
Yes, I believe, in a long term perspective, the most important and probably the most effective ways of investmment for supplyers to get benefits are to offer skills and knowledges to receivers to be able to stand on their own feet in future.


by: janet2312 from: Arizona
June 30, 2013 7:59 PM
"The hand of who gives is always on top," it is said. This is one reason, why Africa should shun aid and pursue business and investment partnerships.

Business ventures and partnerships clearly specify upfront that it is a business relationship, and partners agree to participate based on their satisfaction with the estimated returns to each party involved. Aid on the other hand gives you assistance either as charity or concessional loans on one hand, and takes it back many times over, directly and indirectly.

First, aid benefactors blatantly ask you to adopt their ways of life in other to benefit from their funding. That I must wear different clothes, change my religion, tell me who to marry or not to marry, before you give me help is blatantly disrespectful and undemocratic. That is definitely, a slave-master mentality and should not resisted with all the might of the people. Aid therefore leaves you humiliated and must be shunned.

Secondly, aid surreptitiously leaves you less well off and perpetually dependent on aid by design. One, aid programs incorporate technical experts whose salaries and benefits take a large chunk of the aid funds, and these monies are paid into their accounts in their home countries from the aid account. This means that a large proportion of the aid does not benefit the recipients economy. Two, when aid programs and projects end, they often fail ( among other things, because of inadequate local involvement in planning and implementation, including poor training of local counterpart personnel by technical assistance experts) and these make new cases for another round of aid. In addition, aid is used to finance machinery and equipment from manufacturers in the aid givers' home or their global suppliers. Then, aid recipients have to draw on their foreign reserves for many years after the projects are completed to meet operational supplies. These are issues with aid that are well documented.

In summary, aid breeds humiliation and dependence, and Africa should seek investment and business partnerships.

In Response

by: joezhifu from: Singapore
July 01, 2013 2:56 AM
man I agree. It is so sad to have to beg and be told how to beg.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debatei
X
Shelley Schlender
July 24, 2014 6:43 PM
In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Death Toll From Israel-Gaza Conflict Surpasses 700

Gaza officials say a shelling hit a compound housing a United Nations-run school in the Gaza Strip, killing more than a dozen people, during an Israeli offensive in the area. Heavy fighting between the Israeli military and Hamas militants continued on Thursday, pushing up the death toll. So far, more than 730 Palestinians and 35 Israelis have been killed in the conflict. VOA's Scott Bobb has the latest from Jerusalem.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Researchers Target Low-Cost Avatar Technology

Scientists at the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies say 3-dimensional representations could revolutionize social media. Elizabeth Lee has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid