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Research Report

Chinese agriculture in Africa: Perspectives of Chinese agronomists on agricultural aid

Lila Buckley
Chen Ruijian
Yin Yanfei
Zhu Zidong
Copyright Date: Jan. 1, 2017
Pages: 28
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. 6-8)

    A strong and growing agricultural sector in Africa is required to feed the continent’s rising population and ensure food security worldwide. There is increasing international interest in sustainable agriculture intensification as a potential solution, and a growing reliance on multilateral collaboration on innovative technology and knowledge exchange to achieve the UN ’s ‘Global Goals for Sustainable Development’. However, investment in African agriculture remains well below average global levels, and current efforts fall short of achieving the Global Goals.

    Within this context, Chinese actors are increasingly engaging in African agriculture. During last year’s highlevel Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), Chinese President...

  2. (pp. 9-12)

    In 2015 the newly constituted Research Division of the FECC took an important first step to fill this gap. Their research surveyed more than 160 Chinese agronomists who had spent at least two years in Africa, seeking insight into the actual lived challenges and opportunities of China-Africa agriculture-technology exchange. To some extent this survey was unprecedented: rarely have we been able to hear directly from Chinese practitioners about their experiences in Africa. The research reveals a strong commitment by FECC to engage in collaborative lesson learning with international partners (including IIED) on experiences to date, as well as an introspective...

  3. (pp. 13-21)

    The FECC research sought to understand how Chinese aid workers perceived their experiences in both the targeting and implementation of Chinese agricultural aid in Africa. The following sections summarise the findings of the survey, specifically exploring how these practitioners view African agronomy, how they assess the targeting and performance of Chinese aid, where they have identified gaps, and their suggestions for filling those gaps.

    In order to explore existing gaps in technical assistance from China, the first question that FECC researchers asked was: how do Chinese technicians perceive the agricultural situation in Africa relative to the projects they had implemented?...

  4. (pp. 22-24)

    IIED has engaged in this research led by FECC for its potential to add value to discussions of agricultural aid in Africa. Though the Chinese have provided aid in the African continent for many decades, most of this activity has been bilateral and closed to scrutiny from either within or outside of China. With trilateral engagement only tentatively emerging in recent years, the discussion is gradually starting to widen to encompass the multiple actors involved in supporting stronger agrarian futures in Africa. The perspectives and experiences of Chinese agronomists involved in Chinese aid projects, as presented in the FECC survey,...