China’s Africa Belt and Road investment drops as West spends more

China’s Belt and Road investment in sub-Saharan Africa fell to a new low last year, showing that increased U.S. and European spending could reduce the region’s need to rely on Beijing for funding.

China’s investment in the region related to Beijing’s global infrastructure development strategy dropped 55% to $7.5 billion last year, according to a recent report from the Green Finance and Development Center at Fudan University in Shanghai.

“While China has maintained a substantial presence on the continent for over two decades, the growing interest of Western powers in Africa could impact China’s BRI strategy,” said Alicia Garcia-Herrero, chief economist for Asia-Pacific at French investment bank Natixis.

Also, the inability of many African governments to take on additional loans has dampened demand in the construction and infrastructure sectors, while Chinese foreign investments have gone to less risky and higher-yielding areas.

China continues to be one of the major financiers of infrastructure projects in sub-Saharan Africa, with a total investment of $155 billion over the past two decades. As a result, Beijing has gained enormous influence and contacts with several African nations. This has prompted some observers to see the BRI, launched in 2013, as a vehicle for Chinese geopolitical expansion.

“The decrease in funding could provide an opportunity for the U.S. and the EU to increase their engagement with the region,” said Uche Igwe, a Nigerian political economist.

The U.S. and European Union have recently announced intentions to enhance investments on the continent. Last year, the U.S. joined other Group of Seven nations in a $600 billion Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGII), and Brussels announced a new Africa policy.

The BRI is on the minds of American policymakers who favor greater investment on the continent. Since December 2019, Congress has been funding a Countering Chinese Influence Fund, which instructs the executive branch to challenge Chinese influence in Africa and elsewhere.

In recent weeks, the House Foreign Affairs Committee approved legislation authorizing $325 million a year for the fund over the next half-decade.

“The increased interest in Africa by the United States and the European Union reflects a shift in the global economic order,” Garcia-Herrero said. “With China’s economy weakening, the United States and the European Union are seeking to diversify their assets and extend their influence in emerging nations. Africa represents a massive opportunity for expansion, and both areas are eager to capitalize on it.”

Other analysts warn that competing with China’s established presence and infrastructure on the continent will be difficult.

“China has a head start in Africa,” Igwe said, “and its investments in infrastructure and communication have given Chinese enterprises operating on the continent a substantial edge.”

Africa has become an investment hot spot in recent years, with a growing number of countries looking to attract foreign investment. However, some experts are concerned that the U.S. and EU might resort to unhealthy competition in Africa, which could have wider implications.

“If the competition is healthy, for example, China and the U.S. jockey for influence by providing infrastructure loans with better terms than the competitor,” Beijing-based Africa expert Kai Xue said, “then the tripartite competition leads to trade, investment, development and even security in Africa.”

The need for Chinese-funded infrastructure has not abated, since African countries want transportation projects to speed commerce across the continent as part of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement.

After displacing the U.S. as Africa’s main trading partner in 2009, “China aims to take $300 billion in African goods between 2022 and 2024,” Igwe said. “China is not giving up Africa just yet.”

AM Live

AM Live is NTV's morning current affairs show that sets the agenda for the day with insightful panels every weekday.


Business Redefined

Business Redefined is Kenya’s premier thought leadership platform for unpacking matters regarding economic and finance policy as well demystifying complex developments in the region’s capital markets.


A collection of our premium content. Diam curabitur vehicula A collection of our premium content. Diam curabitur vehicula

Full Episodes

A collection of our premium content. Diam curabitur vehicula A collection of our premium content. Diam curabitur vehicula

Gumzo La Sato

Gumzo La Sato is a live social issues show that aims to create awareness about issues affecting the larger society. The discussions range from Parenting, Marital bliss and struggles, Oppression, violence, and all matters of the Heart.

Health Diary

Health Diary is a weekly show that highlights different types of diseases/conditions and seeks ways to prevent, treat/manage them. The show debunks this through real life stories and also feature specialists in different fields, to offer medical advice on the same.

Letter To My Younger Self

Letter To My Younger Self is a podcast where guests get to write a letter to their younger self, from which Maxine formulates questions to ask them during the hour-long show.

Mazao Talks

Mazao looks at agriculture and agribusiness

Nation Reports

Nation Reports is a weekly podcast offers an opportunity for listeners to interact with various reporters and journey with them as they unravel the biggest most emotive stories.

One Health Lens Podcast

Discussing health matters and human stories from Kenya and across Africa. We talk big picture from people to policy, ecosystems, and everything in between. Follow us on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/onehealthlens

Paradise Lost

Paradise Lost peeks through the story of Louis Otieno, the times, and everything in between.



Speaking of GEN Z

Speaking of Gen Z brings you entertaining but meaningful conversations about a generation that is trying to navigate through adulthood. Join hosts Michelle, Jackie and Esther as they unravel all things Gen Z.

Sport On

Sport-On is a 30-minute sports magazine show on NTV and 3 hours on NATION FM. The show seeks to give the sports “fanatics” and “funatics” comprehensive and in-depth coverage of sports both locally and internationally.


The extent of technological growth is beyond mere acknowledgment; it has seamlessly integrated into our daily existence. A few years ago, the notion of paying electricity bills through mobile money or recharging with 'tokens' in Kenya seemed inconceivable. Online product sales were considered distant, and artificial intelligence is rapidly reshaping various facets of our lives. Amidst these technological leaps, those with a solid understanding of tech can navigate challenges, seize opportunities, and build a sustainable livelihood. Tech over Show aims to be the platform facilitating discussions among thought leaders, innovators, tech companies, and the government, addressing challenges and opportunities in Kenya's thriving tech industry.


Thamani is a business show which is dedicated to emerging issues regarding micro, small and medium size businesses.

The Politalk podcast

This is The Politalk podcast. Here we look into the ins and outs of everything Kenyan politics. We pull no punches and have no reason to sugarcoat anything that matters to Kenyans.

The Trend

A two-hour-long live show that airs on Fridays. The show focuses on what is current in the entertainment industry, controversial and popular across all media platforms targeting those aged between 25 and 35 years.

The trend podcast

The trend podcast highlights and captures the best of banter from #TTTT segment that airs every Friday on NTV. It's the TTTT EXTRA

The Wicked Edition

The Wicked Edition with Dr. King’ori seeks to address serious issues through humour and relatable wit. It is a two-part half hour show filmed in front of a live audience


A collection of our premium content. Diam curabitur vehicula A collection of our premium content. Diam curabitur vehicula


Twende is a travel show that highlights beautiful, unique, diverse locations, people, and cultures. The show offers fresh perspectives on familiar locations and memorable experiences in new ones.


This Saturday evening lifestyle show lets viewers share their stories and life experiences as openly & honestly for the purpose of shifting the culture of silence.

VIP Access

VIP ACCESS is Anyiko Owoko’s YouTube and podcast show on Music and Culture dedicated to promoting Africa’s most promising talent and creatives. This podcast grants you VIP access into timeless interviews while providing a platform for rising as well as established artists across the continent. Since launching in 2018, Anyiko has interviewed over 70 African music stars.


This weekly news show aims to have all sides of debate but not be constrained by it, listen to main voices in the contest but not allow them to hold the viewers hostage, entertain debate but allow push back with all due respect.

When death do us part

In this podcast, three widowers openly speak about the process of grief, how they found themselves exposed to the emotional turmoil of losing their wives, and how society still does not know how to deal with them.

Your World

Your World is a health, wellness and variety show. It provides a platform for audiences and experts to share their experiences on how to improve or manage health issues, across Kenya and the Africa region.