Chinese companies in Senegal. Mapping and impact measurements.
In the space of a quarter of a century, China has become the most dynamic economic partner of the African continent. From the implementation of the Global Going strategy to the definition of an African policy for China with the institutionalization of the China-Africa partnership, around FOCAC, and the publication of the White Paper in 2006, not to mention the new strategy called the Bealt and Road. China’s commitment on the African continent is based on three dimensions: trade, investment, infrastructure financing with Exim Bank of China, and aid policy with a new agency dedicated to China Aid. Indeed, China, which was a relatively modest investor on the continent, has become a potential economic partner in Africa, dethroning traditional partners. And since the turn of the millennium, trade between Africa and China has increased by about 20% per year. Foreign direct investment has grown even faster in the last decade, with a staggering annual growth rate of 41%4. At the heart of this unprecedented dynamic under construction is a multitude of state and non-state enterprises operating in almost every country on the continent. These companies, located in all sectors of activity and of varying sizes, bring their labor, a Chinese management model, and capital investments. They have been little studied, with the exception of a report by the McKinsey firm which estimates their number in Africa to be in the tens of thousands, a figure that far exceeds those put forward by sources from the Chinese Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM), which remains the only body authorized to give figures on Chinese companies in Africa.