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How do the congolese people themselves view chinese investmenst in DRC?

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HOW DO THE CONGOLESE PEOPLE THEMSELVES VIEW CHINESE INVESTMENST IN THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO? 
 
By Antoine Roger Lokongo
Chinese name: 龙刚 (Long Gang)
PhD Candidate
Peking University
Department of International Relations
 
1. Introduction
 
China has provided the Congo (DRC) with some economic aids, taking up such complete sets of project as: the people’s palace, stadium, sugar-refinery combine, handmade agricultural tool plant, rice-planting technique promotion station, trade center and Kinshasa mail distribution center and so on.  The two countries started the mutual-benefit cooperation in 1982. The Chinese company of agriculture, animal-husbandry and fishery for international cooperation, Chinese import and export co. (Group) of complete sets of equipment and the headquarter of China architectural engineering co. as well as some such provinces and cities as Heilongjiang, Hunan, Beijing and Jiangsu all signed contracts for workforce undertakings with the Congo one after the other. China also opened up the solely-owned Huamao Forest & Timber Co. Ltd and the New Oasis Coffee Co. in Congo (DRC). In 1997, the two sides signed an “agreement on mutual protection and encouragement of investment”. In 2000, China Zhongxing Telecommunications Co. Ltd made a joint decision with the Congolese government (DRC) to use the preferential loans of China Import and Export Bank for setting up the China Telecommunications Co. Ltd in Congo. [1]
 
In 1973 and 1988, the two countries signed two trade agreements, stipulating the trading between the two Parties to be on cash payment basis, granting to each other preferential treatment. The year of 2002 saw China's goods import and export value come up to US$ 31.46 million, a rise of 51.4 percent as compared with that of the same period of 2001, of which the Chinese export value taking up US$ 18.99 million, an increase of 44.6 percent over that of 2001 while the import value registered US$ 12.47 million, a growth of 62.2 percent as against that of 2001. The major exports from China are machines, light industry products, and the imports are some mineral ores of copper, cobalt and zinc etc.[2]
 
Nowadays, when talking about Chinese investments in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), my country, I think immediately think about the mega deal which the Congolese government and a group of Chinese owned state enterprises signed on 17 Sept 2007.
A number of public infrastructure works, including roads, bridges, ports, airports, hospitals, schools, universities, vocational training centres; as well as energy infrastructures, including the Zongo dam,the construction of which has been launched in the Bas-Congo province to solve the problem of energy shortage and power cuts in the capital Kinshasa…All these projects are being financed by a $6 billion Chinese Exim Bank loan + a $2 billion extra loan for the modernization of Congo’s mining infrastructures. To guarantee reimbursement, Sicomines, a Congolese/Chinese joint venture has been created to extract and sell copper, cobalt and gold.
However, some more new deals have been signed most recently too, which shows that the DRC is becoming a very strategic partner of the People’s Republic of China.
In July 2010, Chinese State Councillor Dai Binguo Dai Binguo and Congolese Prime Minister Adolphe Muzito signed a 100 million Yuan loan-aid agreement. Half of that money is aid, half is a loan to finance various sectors including agriculture.[3]
 
In addition, on 11 of February this year, Mr Wang Yingwu, Chinese Ambassador to the DRC announced that the Chinese Government will finance the construction of the new building that will serve as the headquarters of the new “Strategic Institute for Research in Economy and Development”.[4]
 
In March 2011 Director General and President of the China Development Bank, Chen Yuan signed various agreements with Matata Mpoyo, Congolese Finance Minister covering various sectors including agriculture, railways, mining, energy, hydrocarbons and manufacturing.[5]
 
On 10 July 2009, Zhang Peng, Regional Manager of China's ZTE Agribusiness Company Ltd, told Xinhua News Agency that his company was aiming at a 1 million hectare palm tree plantation in the DRC for bio-fuel production, adding that the project can offer thousands of jobs for the local people. 
 
This writer personally believes China and the DRC’s are right to focus their cooperation on the rehabilitation and the building of new infrastructures first and foremost. A Chinese proverb says: “If you want to get rich, build roads first”.
 
It is therefore very important to focus our attention to what is internationally known as “The Deal of the Century”. As a reminder, in September 2007 the DRC signed a historic mining agreement with China. The agreement was conducted between La Générale des Carrières des Mines (Gécamines), the DRC’s state-owned mining company, and a group of Chinese state-owned enterprises known as the China Enterprise Group (this is a kind of public–private agreement). These include, China Railway Group Limited, China Sinohydro Corporation, China Metallurgical Group and Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt Company.
The agreement creates a mining joint-venture between Gécamines and the China Enterprise Group in the form of a Beijing-based company called SICOMINES (a joint-venture), in which the Chinese hold 68% of the shares and Gécamines 32%. Eximbank entered with an investment of US$9 billion in SICOMINES, of which US$3.25 billion will be mining investment and the remaining US$6 billion earmarked for infrastructural development. 
The loan is only the first instalment of a US$20 billion package of loans to be made available over the next three years. Of the US$9 billion, a third will be pumped into the DRC’s war-ravaged mines. The other US$6 billion will take the form of a soft loan (backed by some of the country’s best mineral deposits) to finance new infrastructure (roads, railways, hospitals, hydro-electric dams, airports and vocational training centres…) to be built by Chinese construction companies. Changes to infrastructure will be made primarily with Chinese labour, though Congolese local companies will be sub-contracted.
[6] However, some projects which must be finished on time require many Chinese hands. That is why the Chinese are always in the majority.
 
2. Western powers’ pressure on the DRC government to ditch the SICOMINES deal
 
Financial Times Report best illustrated such a pressure.
“There should be no doubt that Beijing's focused strategy to secure resources, influence, markets for its contractors, service providers and products in Africa, has shifted into a higher gear. In response, traditional donors need to be more nimble and ambitious if they want to remain relevant. But they should not relax their insistence on the money being spent honestly and well – as already mooted in the corridors of the World Bank and the European Union,” it said.[7]
 
Most Western donors said that they supported the deal ‘in principle’ because it gives the DRC access to capital on a scale it could not receive from anywhere else. But, led by the Paris Club of creditors and the IMF, they have raised objections to specific provisions.
The focus of concern, according to Western diplomats in Kinshasa, is that the deal would give the Chinese consortium unprecedented state financial guarantees, including some that earmark government revenues and make China a privileged creditor.
 
The Financial Times yet again reported on 9 February 2009 that China’s biggest investment deal in Africa is faltering as Western donors create pressure to renegotiate a minerals-for-infrastructure contract in the DRC.[8]In public statements the IMF has ‘urged the [Congolese] authorities to take all actions to ensure that the final agreement [with China] is consistent with debt sustainability’, according to the report. In Kinshasa, the report said, the government is keen to listen to the concerns of Western donors but is, at the same time, eager to pursue the deal with the Chinese.
Western powers – especially Anglo-Saxon powers - backed their opposition to the China-Congo deal with military pressure. In fact, the Financial Times reported on 31 October 2008 that the Rwanda-backed evangelical Christian Tutsi warlord Laurent Nkunda, alias Nkundabatware, who grabbed all the headlines in credit-crunch hit Western countries, was very much against the agreement the DRC signed with China to provide US$9 billion worth of investment in rebuilding infrastructure in exchange for the country’s natural resources. This was a clear sign that Nkundabatware was being used. But who gave him the mandate to veto an agreement signed by a sovereign, legitimate and democratically-elected government with a partner of its free choice?
 
Nkundabatware was a proxy for Rwandan interests in the DRC, and the West is using the presidency of Paul Kagame of Rwanda to weaken the DRC completely.
 
This writer attended a meeting convened by the Royal Commonwealth Society in 2009. The aim of the meeting was to discuss whether Rwanda should be admitted or not as a member of the Commonwealth. One of the speakers, Andrew Mitchell, a Conservative MP and former shadow minister for international development, said that ‘he likes Kagame because he is a man of actions who has shown exceptional leadership and who is working with India to thwart China’s breakthrough in Africa.’ He meant to say the DRC, because Kagame has so far only invaded the DRC, which has signed the biggest minerals-for-infrastructure contract with China valued at US$9 billion (€6.9 billion, UK£6 billion).
 
Western powers could not tolerate Laurent Kabila’s panafrican, pro-South-South Cooperation policies, especially his pro-China leanings. In fact, Laurent Kabila’s first 10 trips did not take him out of Africa after inauguration and the 11th of which was to China (Martens: 2002:284) suggests.[9]
 
Between 1998 and 2003, the DRC was subjected to a war of invasion and aggression by anglo-american-rwandan-ugandan-burundian-south african military coalition; during which 5 million Congolese have been killed, Congo’s land occupied, Congo’s natural and mineral resources systematically looted, especially the mineral coltan out of which mobile phones, laptops, satellites are made, and rape , summary executions and forced displacement of native Congolese from their land being used as weapons of war in the eastern part of the country.
 
Western NGOs, especially UK-based Global Witness[10], Rights and Accountability in Development (RAD)[11], for their part, argue that the deal is opaque, shrouded in secrecy and there is need for more transparency.
Well, the Chinese deal was debated in the Congolese parliament before the Government went ahead with it and so it is hard to agree that the Congo-China deal was done in secrecy. Even if it was, the Congolese people see roads, railways, hospitals, hydro-electric dams, airports and vocational training centres... being built. What more proof do you need? Yes, corruption is widespread in the DRC by “You can’t put a highway in your Swiss bank account,” goes a popular saying in the Congo. Actually the Chinese have not started mining yet but they have already built some roads. If there are problems, Congolese are mature enough to talk to the Chinese and redress them.
 
2.1. Western powers’agenda: To keep the DRC as a Western protectorate in Africa
 
When Joseph Kabila turned to the Chinese, Karel de Gucht, then Belgian Minister of Foreign Affairs was so angry that he told President Joseph Kabila: “You are not going to give King Leopold II’s Congo to the Chintox!” (Chintox is a derogative term for Chinese in Belgium) - Revelation made by Colette Braeckman, journalist of the Belgian daily Le Soir and expert on the Great Lakes Region of Africa’s affairs, during a conference on the “50years after its independence: Congo’s Renaissance” she organized on Saturday 23 October 2010 in the ‘Centre culturel et de Congrès de Woluwe Saint Pierre, Avenue Charles Thielemans’, Brussels.
 
Note that after 51 years of independence, the Belgian elite still consider the DRC as “King Leopold’s Congo”.
Schlamp (2011) reported that the ballots from the DRC’s 2006 election hadn’t yet been counted, but already Europe and America forged plans for the future government. The Africans had either to agree to strict economic and political conditions or the Western powers would cut off aid to the strife-torn country. The experts met secretly in the center of Kinshasa, the six-million-strong capital of the DRC. In two confidential meetings, representatives from the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) met with emissaries of the United States and the European Union to come up with the blueprint of a future government policies of Congo. No Congolese were invited to attend either meeting.
 
Schlamp commented in the same article that no matter who the winner turned out to be, the West already had plans for the new leaders of this strife-torn country devastated by dictatorship and war. Even before the new government in Kinshasa was formally installed, the European Union and the United States wanted to “condition” the most important political leaders. The plan was to confront the future rulers with a clear alternative: If they don’t accept the West’s guidelines, their financial support will be cut off.[12]
 
An African proverb says: “If you are drowning, you don’t look at the hand that is reached towards you, you just grab it ”. When Joseph Kabila turned to the West, the DRC was almost on the verge of bankruptcy. Reuters reported that the DRC’s foreign reserves, which stood at over US$225 million in April 2008, fell to just US$36 million in early February 2009. The country had to consecrate a staggering $800 million a year or 32% of its annual budget to pay off the debt that the previous dictatorial and predatory regime of Mobutu had accumulated, which is quoted as $14 billion in total. The World Bank reacted quickly and Marie-Francoise Marie-Nelly, the DRC’s World Bank country director, announced that the bank has proposed lending the country US$100 million in emergency funds from early March to help offset the effects of dwindling mineral export revenues, as Lokongo (2009) reported.[13]
 
The World Bank proposal came as the DRC’s government accelerated efforts to secure another US$200 million from the IMF’s ‘exogenous shocks facility’ as the country awaited a rebound in demand for its mineral exports. How viable were these amounts compared with the US$20 billion that China was proposing to the DRC, a post-conflict country? Who could explain to us how the World Bank’s US$100 million loan and the IMF’s US$200 million loan to the DRC would not increase its debt burden? Why should we be worried about Chinese loans and not Western ones?
 
2.2. The return of the ‘white patronage’ over the DRC to thwart China’s rising
 
In his report, Schlamps (2011) provided yet another evidence which shows that African countries in general and the DRC in particular are not allowed to exercise freedom of choice and break free from the stranglehold of neocolonialism. He interviewed Albrecht Conze, the former political chief of MONUC (Mission des Nations Unies en République Démocratique du Congo – the UN Mission in the DRC), and now the German ambassador to Zimbabwe.
Conze told Schlamp that he predicted the return of the white patronage over the DRC, a country that was a Belgian colony until 1960, in the following terms: “It is like the West being Congo’s foster parents” he said, “but it won’t be easy.” According to Conze’s theory, support will come from a black ‘council of advisors’, another idea hatched by Western governments. He revealed that “the plan was well-known by African politicians such as Joaquim Chissano, Mozambique’s former president, [and] Nicephore Soglo, his colleague from Benin, who were tasked to make policies crafted overseas more palatable to Congo’s citizens”. 
Conze is said to have pointed out that the project’s success ultimately would depend on ‘Western states and institutions acting in a unified way’. But that is a somewhat shaky foundation. However Conze expressed doubt over the US government’s interest in rebuilding the DRC since “the deeply Catholic country contains neither oil nor terrorists” - Snow (2008) disagreed with this statement. By contrast, Congo’s former colonial ruler Belgium feared losing lucrative business opportunities to European competitors the moment the situation in the country became more transparent, that is more democratic, adding that the rising world power China could cause trouble too – by providing billions of dollars in loans without imposing conditions or controls in return for access to the country’s valuable natural resources; since Beijing has already used this method in neighbouring Angola, where it now controls much of the oil production.”
[14]
 
According to the Conze logic therefore, democratic elections or not, the DRC will have to be maintained under the trusteeship of the West (the fear of China is particularly stressed) whereby Western powers will continue to impose their will over the Congolese people, 51 years after the independence. At this age of globalisation, the DRC will have no freedom to diversify its trading partners. It will therefore still be maintained as a Belgian colony, a ‘free trade zone’ as it was defined at the Berlin Conference under the trusteeship of King Leopold II. 
However, The DRC has, more or less, adopted the liberal market economy, the fundamental principle of which is ‘you go where you get a better deal’. If it gets a better deal from China, why not put China first? Similarly, if it gets a better deal from America, Belgium, France or Britain, why not privilege such partnerships first?
 
As Belgian analyst Tony Busselen puts it, this agreement is not about charity or aid; it is a form of economic cooperation on a capitalist basis, in that investors make a country pay for the risks they take. Congo will pay with minerals and get infrastructures, the market defines the price of the minerals and the Chinese companies involved come to Congo to make profits.
 
In fact, today, apart from the Chinese mining contracts in which the Congolese state retains at least 32% of stakes, the stakes of the Congolese state in all other mining contracts the government has signed with Western mining companies do not go beyond 20%! So, Western powers still enjoy the “lion’s share in Congo. In Zimbabwe, the Government retains 51% stakes in each mining contract, not like in the DRC! Take Freeport MacMoran, which wants to exploit the biggest reserve of copper and cobalt in the world situated in Tenke Fungurume, Katanga. It insists that the Congolese state should be content with less than 20% stake, and should not revise it.[15] Companies such as Banro hold private gold concessions – wholly owned in eastern Congo’s South Kivu and Maniema provinces the size of France as one of its press releases confirmed.[16]
 
After all, the U.S. desire to devour Africa was best explained by the late U.S. Secretary of Commerce, Ron Brown, while visiting Uganda. He told a dinner party audience that: 
“For many years African business has been dominated by Europeans while America gets only 17% of the market. We are now determined to reverse that and take the lion’s share”.
[17]
 
At the same time Western NGOs are completely silent about this state of affairs and Western powers have the audacity to accuse Congolese authorities of not being competent and having lousy negotiation skills – only when it comes to negotiations with China, right?  
 
Busselen argues that since the fall of the Mobutu dictatorship, there is a strong tendency among Congolese leaders to advance in an autonomous way and to get rid of the paternalistic tutelage of the old colonial and neo-colonial masters. The cooperation convention between Congo and China is one of the key dossiers in this perspective. The main question here is: will this contract be a real step forward for the Congolese people or will it make them suffer for another generation?
He concludes that it is astonishing to see how much hostility this deal has provoked among people who see no problem in Western economic and political cooperation with Africa that until now left the African people with no real benefit.
[18]
 
3. What do Congolese themselves make of the China-Congo deals?
 
The Congolese public opinion or the Congolese people are divided into three camps, regarding Chinese investments in their country, the Democratic Republic of Congo: (1) The “YES Camp” which supports the deal, (2) the “NO Camp” which rejects the deals, and finally, (3) the “Yes But… Camp”, which accepts the deals, but on certain a priori conditions.
 
3.1. The “Yes Camp”:
 
Stefaan Marysse & Sara Geenen (2009:372) suggest that in Congo there is indeed such an internal debate, both in the media and on the political scene about Chinese policy and Chinese investments in the DRC.[19] They argue that euphoric reactions come often from the government side, as a lead article in the popular magazine L’Avenir(2007), a government mouthpiece, was clear on this issue :
 
“… for a long time, they [the Congolese] have been oppressed by Western governments and multinationals. … The time has come to break with the traditions and to stand firm against the IMF and the World Bank, because our country has not seen the end of the tunnel yet. On the contrary, the social inequality gap in the DRC is only widening. The great pressure put on the Congolese decision makers by Western   actors is a mere consequence of selfishness and bad faith … However, the win-win agreement between the DRC and China is… an example of cooperation … without any hidden agenda of exploitation.”[20]
 
According to Stefaan Marysse & Sara Geenen, the “Yes Camp” proponents put forward three arguments. First, most comments are based on a feeling of frustration about the performance of Western donors and multilateral institutions. These authors feel that Western donors have not lived up to their promises, and welcome the Chinese aid as a new and entirely different partnership.
 
The “Yes Camp” represents the nationalist faction in the DRC who have been fighting Mobutu’s western backed dictatorship after the assassination of Patrice Lumumba, Congo’s democratically elected leader since independence in 1960. The deal remains a political capital to win the elections. President Joseph Kabila himself is, of course, the first proponent of the “Yes Camp”.
This is how, in an interview given to Gettleman of the New York Times, Kabila himself explained why he turned to the Chinese for help after being disappointed with the West’s empty promises.  
“We said we had five priorities: infrastructure; health; education; water and electricity; and housing. Now, how do we deal with these priorities? We need money, a lot of money. Not a 100 million U.S. dollars from the World Bank or 300 from the IMF [International Monetary Fund]. No, a lot of money, and especially that we're still servicing a debt of close to 12 billion dollars, and it’s 50 to 60 million U.S. dollars per month, which is huge. You give me 50 million dollars each month for the social sector and we move forward. Anyway, that’s another chapter. But we said: so, we have these priorities, and we talked to everybody. Americans, do you have the money? No, not for now. The European Union, do you have three or four billion for these priorities? No, we have our own priorities. Then we said: why not talk to other people, the Chinese? So we said, do you have the money? And they [the Chinese] said, well, we can discuss. So we discussed”.[21]
 
In the same interview given to Gettleman (2009:2), President Joseph Kabila himself confessed that he did not understand the resistance he has encountered from Western powers about the Chinese deal.
 
This interview suggests that Joseph Kabila turned to the Chinese only after seeking help from Western powers. That is exactly the dilemma Patrice Lumumba - a powerful and charismatic leader, the first ever democratically and legally elected leader in the DRC - faced. Increasingly desperate, Patrice Lumumba went on an international trip to enlist Western support (including to Washington, London, Brussels…) to have Belgian troops who had orchestrated the secession of Katanga to live immediately. He did not get the support he expected and turned to the Russians for help. He was immediately accused of being a communist and eventually assassinated.[22]
 
The DRC’s point man for mineral negotiations, Victor Kasongo, then Vice-Minister of Mines put it as follows:
“If China wants to dominate the world, it's not our business to stop them,” Kasongo continues. “Who are we to close the door to them when we don't have water or electricity? If China doesn’t come [to Congo], we’re in big sh*t.”[23]
 
Big sh*t indeed! On 28.11.2011, the people of the DRC will elect their leaders, the third “multi-party, democratic, free, fair and transparent elections” since gaining independence from Belgium on 30 June 1960. The incumbent President Joseph Kabila is standing for re-election. He recently outlined some his achievements during his 10 year-long tenure of office, including the organization of the first democratic elections in 46 years, the construction of new infrastructures under his “Cinq chantiers” or “Five Pillar” civil infrastructure initiatives, the restoration of peace and the reunification of the country...[24] Frankly speaking, without Chinese infrastructures projects, Joseph Kabila would have nothing to show to the people as the outcome of what he has achieved during the last five years in power. Without Chinese investments in the face of the West’s empty promises but because it hit by the global financial crisis, Kabila was going “to see red” as Colette Braeckman of the Belgian daily, Le Soir, put it.[25]The Chinese have thrown a political lifeline to Joseph Kabila, according to her understanding.
 
Congolese living in the capital Kinshasa point out that since the rehabilitation by the Chinese of all the roads going to the neighbouring provinces of Bas-Congo, Bandundu, Kasai…, the capital is now supplied with fresh vegetables and other agricultural products right from the fields as the arrive fresh in the early afternoon. Thanks to the new Chinese-built road network, all the provinces have been connected, the DRC has been re-integrated with the neighbouring countries, especially, countries of the Southern African Development Community (SADC). Local people can access cheap goods from Chinese boutiques throughout the country.
“The Chinese have replaced the Portuguese in the 1960s and 1970s who had shops even in remote villages in Congo,” Congolese journalist Diana Gikupa told this writer by telephone from Kinshasa. 
“European missionaries built schools and hospitals in this country in a space of 80 years. Now with the Chinese we are rebuilding all the sectors of our economy in a short span of time. For the first time a real ‘Marshall Plan’, ‘a Chinese Marshall Plan’ for Congo is being implemented. This is concrete development,” said Gikupa.
 
“Some World Bank funded projects in the DRC are now executed by the Chinese because they are so efficient,” Gikupa said.
 
Gikupa added that no western investors can do what the Chinese are achieving in the DRC in a short span of time and at the same they have not been compensated with minerals yet, Congo is already benefiting more than China.
“It is the Chinese side, especially China Eximbank, which took more risks.”
 
Gikupa concluded that on a short term, the Congolese people living near newly-built Chinese projects have in no time seen hospitals, schools and other infrastructures that were seriously lacking and if the Congolese people waited to meet so-called “good governance conditions” imposed by Western donors before they release funds, they will wait for along time.
“On along-term, if the projects continue with the same rhythm in the next five years, the DRC will become an emerging economy by 2015 and a power by 2060, as President Kabila put it,” Gikupa said.
 
“Now you can travel to and through from Kinshasa to Lubumbashi. Because of the road network now linking many provinces, the prices of goods have gone down. Before a bag of salt cost $15, now it costs just $2. ” - Florent Kuelo, Project Manager and Development Expert (email, sent to this writer on 15.11.2011).
 
As President Joseph Kabila stated, finally, “For the first time in our history, the Congolese people can see that their nickel and copper is being used to good effect.”[26]
 
“We’ve been mining for two centuries but people only see minerals going out,” said the then deputy Mining Minister Victor Kasongo.
“People talk about roads, schools, water - they hardly see anything from the huge assets.”[27]
 
This writer who belongs to the “Yes Camp” argues that the Chinese deal is an ‘infrastructure development resources-backed finance (IDRF)’ deal, a kind of barter trade – “a win-win deal” to paraphrase the Chinese - which will not leave the DRC saddled with debts. It will have an impact on the infrastructure sector as well as on the agriculture sector. It will benefit Western investors, especially in the mining sector. How can you kick-start the development of the DRC after 15 years of a war of aggression without basic infrastructures? Clearly, this is where you start. China is ready to put a larger amount of money into the DRC than any other.[28]
 
According to Pierre Lumbi Okongo, who, as the then Minister of Public Works and Infrastructures, signed the contracts, this is a ‘new economic model’ and ‘well adapted to the realities of our country’.[29]
 
3.2. The “No Camp”:
Several opposition members – usually Mobutuits - represent the the “No Camp” and expect Western powers to boost their position as they supported Mobutu for 32 years.They are thus hoping to block China in the DRC (African Military Command, Anti-China legislation and so on).Stefaan Marysse & Sara Geenen (2009:373) [30]suggest that the opposition fiercely criticised the agreements and asked for a renegotiation (Le Potentiel 2008a, 2008b).[31] The 150 parliamentarians of the Mouvement pour la Libe′ration du Congo (MLC), the main opposition party, even rose from their seats and walked out of the Assembly in protest (Edinger & Jansson 2008).[32] Jean-Lucien Mbusa, speaking on behalf of the main opposition, the Movement for the Liberation of the Congo (MLC), said that the deal “forces us to sell off our national heritage to the detriment of several generations in exchange for a few paved roads.” [33]Stefaan Marysse & Sara Geenen cited R. Kabamba (2008), another MLC member who is critical of the government, commenting that ‘the truth has been difficult to hide: the Chinese will benefit most’. According to him, Kabila’s only goal is to realise his electoral promises so as to stay in power. The population will have to deal with the consequences of the ‘waste’ (bradage) later.[34]
The DRC opposition leaders are usually inclined to exploit whatever resentments the West might have against Joseph Kabila – especially their opposition to Chinese mining contracts for infrastructures, like Zambian opposition leader Michael Sata, now President Sata - hoping thus to secure support from the West. They are always playing “the China Card”. If elected, both Tshisekedi and Kamerhe have said that they will cancel or change Chinese contracts, as Braeckman (2011) [35]as well as Lyndo (2011)[36] reported and they want Congo to come back to its “traditional partners” (former colonial powers). However, as far as evidence shows, Africa’s ‘traditional partners’ are also signing major deals involving above $20 billion with China in the case of France alone, topping all other EU countries as Hollinger (2010) reports. Given the global financial and debt crisis, China is buying Africa’s traditional partners’ sovereign debts as well bailing most of them out, as Bawden and Shalvey (2011) report.[37]Perhaps Congolese opposition leaders are oblivious to these facts.
 
In fact, Congolese opposition leaders warmly welcomed US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s recent statement warning Africans against “China’s neocolonialism”. She said that she is concerned that China’s foreign assistance and investment practices in Africa have not always been consistent with generally accepted international norms of transparency and good governance.
 
China Daily quoted Hillary Clinton as saying: “We saw that during colonial times, it is easy to come in, take out natural resources, pay off leaders and leave. And when you leave, you don’t leave much behind for the people who are there. We don’t want to see a new colonialism in Africa,” she told the Zambian Television while on official visit in Lusaka in June 2011.[38]
 
The fact that Secretary of State Hilary Clinton’s statement targeted China - a new competitor on the African scene that is changing the rules of the games - prompts many questions: Did China ever colonized Africa before? If not, what kind of re-colonization is she talking about? Didn’t Africa and China experienced only one kind of colonization: Western colonization? In addition, what do we make of NATO’s intervention in Libya, France’s intervention in Ivory Coast , military bases being built by the US all over the African continent under the military African Command (Africom) project? Can they be viewed as the West’s new forms of neo-colonialism in Africa? Many analysts, including Petras (2011) suggest that the West’s war against Africa, America’s particularly, is long overdue and should stop.[39]
 
Some Congolese scholars, lawyers, civil society activists, including priests, are also opposed to the Chinese deal. But their aim is to make themselves be heard by the international community to boost their own careers, not because they are concerned about national interest. Stefaan Marysse & Sara Geenen cite Professor Kirongozi (2008) also as arguing that “the agreement is highly beneficial to the Chinese”.[40]Similarly, according to Stefaan Marysse & Sara Geenen, the juridical analysis by Me Okitonembo (2008) leads to the conclusion that this is an unequal contract (un pactele´onin), which protects only Chinese interests. The author mainly criticizes the multiple clauses in favour of the Chinese parties.[41]Jean-Pierre Mbelu (2007), a Catholic priest, argues for his part that Congo is going to be exploited by the Chinese just as it was during colonisation, that the debt will be a burden for many generations to come, and that the current government is only interested in making quick money.[42]
 
Peter Lee suggests[43] that a prominent open-society activist wasn’t loath to invoke the monstrous colonial reign of King Leopold II of Belgium over the Congo in characterizing the Chinese deal as he told the BBC:
“Our worry is that it is almost totally opaque. It permits a group of Chinese to get more than the Congolese – it’s not a ‘win-win contract,” said Katanga-based lawyer Georges Kapiamba, who eventually obtained a copy [of the contract]. If the copy of the contract has been made available, how can it be branded opaque at the same time?[44]
Kapiamba says the deal amounts to a licensed plundering of DR Congo's resources similar to that carried out under Leopold. Kapiamba went too far in comparing the China-Congo deal with Belgian King Leopold’s scramble for Congo because the Chinese too who had to build the first railway in Congo suffered as they were subjected to slave labour with Africans. And the Chinese are not cutting off Congolese’s hands or holding their wives hostages until they reach a certain quota of rubber, ivory or copper. There should be no doubt that Beijing's focused strategy to secure resources, influence, markets for its contractors, service providers and products in Africa, has shifted into a higher gear. In response, traditional donors need to be more nimble and ambitious if they want to remain relevant. But they should not relax their insistence on the money being spent honestly and well – as already mooted in the corridors of the World Bank and the European Union.
                    
3.3. The “Yes But… Camp”
 
Many Congolese members of the civil society and local NGOs have mixed feelings: they seem to welcome the contract, but still express some doubts as to whether the Congolese population will really profit this time (Alterinfo 2008).[45] Through their research, reports and speaking tours in Europe and America, they spread the pessimism about the Congo-China deal, hoping to secure more money from the Western donors who also are skeptical about the deal; in other words, they say what the donors want to hear t secure funds from them.
 
One commentator wonders whether the Congolese are really aware of the fact that this is a loan, not a grant (Kabwe 2007).[46]Tshikwenda (2008) for example acknowledges the opportunities (infrastructure works) that the agreement provides, but has doubts about the feasibility studies, interest rates and tax exemption.[47]
Félicien Mbikayi Cimanga, a native of the Kasaï Province, rich in diamond and director of a local NGO called G.A.E.R.N (Groupe d'Appui aux Exploitants des Ressources Naturelles), says the DRC is in great need of investments and infrastructures but not at any price.
For Mbikayi Cimanga, Chinese investors must:
-         respect the sovereignty of the Congolese state and Congolese laws with regard to natural resources exploitation
-         they must protect the environment, they must not encourage or give in to corruption,
-         they must respect Congolese workers’social and economic rights as prescribed by the Congolese laws
-         They must ensure that all their activities are carried out in transparency and must regularly make all the information related to their investments public and available
-         They must pay taxes in accordance to the Congolese laws
 
Mbikayi Cimanga concludes: “All the investors interested in the potential that Congo’s natural resources offer and they are welcome, whether they come from countries, commonly known as traditional partners (former colonial powers)or from emerging countries such China and Brazil. Our country is in great need of new investments in all sectors, especially in the mining and agricultural sectors, on conditions that our partners respect our obligations, which is not always the case.”[48]
 
4. Agriculture, the DRC’s first priority of among all other priorities
 
The biggest and urgent challenge that the people of the DRC face now is the reconstruction of their dilapidated and ravaged but huge and rich in natural and mineral resources country. 
 
 
4.1. The DRC’s mining assets
 
The DRC has 18 major natural resources: bauxite/aluminium, cadmium, tin, coal, cobalt (34% of the world’s reserves), copper (10% of the world’s reserves), coltan, diamonds, gas, gold, iron ore, lead, manganese, oil, silver, timber, uranium, and zinc. Congo’s soil is reputed to contain every mineral known to man and it is thought to hold one-third of the world’s cobalt reserves and two-thirds of its coltan, an ore of tantalum, widely used in mobile phones. It also produces 23,000-27,000 barrels of oil per day. Towards the end of the 1980s, Congo was the world’s fifth largest producer of copper, the top producer of cobalt and the second largest producer of industrial diamond.[49]
 
 
4.2. The DRC’s agricultural potential
 
However, the first biggest asset of the DRC is its vast arable land (more than 80% of the national territory) which can guarantee food security for the whole African continent as well as feed 2 billion people in the world.[50] That is why, Laurent Kabila, who as the first post-Mobutu president, made the first plan for the reconstruction of Congo without the interference of IMF, World Bank and the West. This plan was written by the brand new government members, appointed by president Kabila in June 1997, three months later their plan for the next three years was there. For the first time in Congo's history, the Congolese themselves had planned for the reconstruction and economic development. This plan surely had weaknesses and could easily be criticized. But its merits were that it put the agricultural sector as the priority on the forefront. But did this plan receive support from the West? It did not. Instead many in the West described Laurent Kabila as a dictator and an obstacle for progress. Laurent Kabila’s first official visit outside the African continent was to China with his whole government.
 
The DRC’s climate is tropical, ranging from hot and humid in the equatorial river basin to cool and dry in the southern highlands. The country has two wet seasons: one north of the Equator, April through October; and one south of the Equator, November through March. The climate is therefore very beneficial to agriculture. When it is raining in the south of the country, it is dry season in the north of the country vice versa. So people can always cultivate throughout the whole year. The DRC does not need food aid at all! So why is the DRC not fulfilling its agricultural potentiality, especially now that food prices have rocketed high as a result of the current global financial crisis, conflicts and severe drought, Somalia being a concrete case?
 
Agricultural production comprises 79% cropping activities, 12 percent fisheries, and 9 percent livestock. Close to 66% of the total agricultural land is devoted to pasture and 34 percent to crop land. The agricultural sector occupies a predominant place in the Congolese economy.
 
The DRC has approximately 135 million hectares of arable land of which 10% (3% for crop and 7% for livestock) are developed.
 
4.3. China-Congo agricultural partnership
 
The DRC is a sleeping giant ready to become not the engine of African development but also Africa’s even the world’s bread basket because it has Africa's largest base of potential arable land. The DRC is turning to China for support and investments to revive its agricultural sector given China’s long and successful experience in the agricultural sector. I personally expect China to say to the DRC: “Hey! Wake Up Sleeping Giant!”
How concretely?
 
The Congolese people have hailed six main achievements of the Sino-Congolese Cooperation in the agricultural sector, namely:
 
- The Lotokila sugar refinery in Oriental Province
- The rice cultivation pilot firm in Kinshasa
- The water-firm pilot project in Kinshasa
- The maize plantation, pig and cattle firms in Bateke /Nsele presidential domain near Kinshasa
- The launch of the South Kivu Dairy, a dairy company in South Kivu Province
- A Chinese company called Groupe Greater Kingdom plans to introduce the
cultivation of Jatropha whose grains provide oil that can be used as biofuel.
 
 
5. Some Problems that are Arising
 
5.1. “Development approach” versus “militarization approach”
 
Western powers are developing strategies to block China’s rise in Africa (if you take into consideration Hillary Clinton’s statement in Zambia recently in which she warned Africans to beware the new Chinese neo-colonialism) and putting pressure on the Congolese government in order to keep the DRC under their sphere of influence. Using Congolese opposition leaders to stand against Chinese contracts in the DRC is part of that strategy. There is a resistance on the part of the DRC which wants to embrace the Chinese development approach suitable to its national realities. The Chinese “development approach” is opposed to the Western “militarization” approach. Africans do not believe in the “Trilateral Approach” (China and America working together in Africa to ‘help Africa’). Right now, under the African Command (AFRICOM) Program, the Americans are establishing a military base in Kisangani.
                                                                                 
5.2. Chinese investments require political stability and predictability
 
If China wants political stability and predictability in Africa in general and in the DRC in particular, then China’s principle of “non-interference approach will need to become flexible. There will be need for some sort of alignment. Michael Sata, an opposition leader who run his campaign by playing an anti-China card , has just won the election, forcing China to also open dialogue with opposition parties in African countries. When Libya, a small country was attacked by NATO forces, Chinese investments in that country suffered a big loss. Suppose the DRC is yet again attacked by Western powers or by their proxies, all the Chinese investments in the DRC will be jeopardized if not lost. So what China can do? It is up to China to think about these kinds of scenarios. What is true is that will not give up its interests in the face of American competition.
 
 
5.3. Need for a “media counter-offensive” on the Chinese side in the face Western NGOs’anti-China negative campaign in Africa
 
China is also subjected to a negative campaign by Western NGOs in Africa. China needs to develop a media strategy to counter such a negative campaign as the Chinese Embassy in Kinshasa did.
 
The focus of concern, according to Western diplomats in Kinshasa, was that the deal would give the Chinese consortium unprecedented state financial guarantees, including some that earmark government revenues and make China a privileged creditor. 
But Wu Zexian, then China’s ambassador to the DRC, reacted strongly.
“They [Western institutions] are wrong to ask Congo to remove the state guarantee. That is blackmail’, he said. ‘This is a poor country that needs to develop. Why force the country to modify the clause? We cannot accept that. It’s discriminatory.”
 
Throughout Africa, it was widely believed that the IMF was simply taking sides with the West in the geopolitical tussle with China in Africa. Ghana Business News reported:
“The IMF's opposition to the deal represents an attempt by the West to counter China’s investments in Africa, according to Gregory Mthembu-Salter of the South African Institute of International Affairs. It’s a confrontation between the Western donors and China in Congo, he said in a June 2 interview. The fall guy in this will be the Congolese.”[51]
 
5.4. The Chinese Government needs to reign on so many individual profit-driven Chinese actors on the ground in Africa
 
China will have to balance the interests of so many individual profit-driven Chinese actors on the ground in Africa who may hijack or bypass China’s diplomacy or foreign policies, make a lot of mistakes (abuses) and thus put China’s credibility in African on the line. Some Chinese have been arrested in Congo for ivory smuggling[52]and organizing Chinese girls prostitution rings.[53] China needs to put a regulatory framework in place. However, because of the “one child policy”, Chinese workers cannot have children in Africa. But if , as a foreigner, you have to spend five years or more in Africa, life can be quite lonely.
 
5.6. Human rights issues and environmental issues must not take a back seat
 
China is involved in peace keeping operations and in humanitarian relief operation in the DRC. So, human rights issues and environmental issues are not taking a back seat. Sometimes, there are accusations of abuse of African workers leveled against the Chinese, especially by African Association for the Defense of Human Rights. But Chinese companies operating in the DRC have always denied that.[54]
Since the Chinese have not started their mining operations, it is difficult to talk about environmental issues now.
 
5.7. Transparency must be guaranteed
                                               
As far as transparency is concerned, Beijing insisted that the contracts be ratified by the Congolese parliament and the then Minister of Public Works and Infrastructures, Pierre Lumbi addressed the parliament many times on this issues for clarification sake.
 
5.8. Need for technology transfer and micro-credits
 
China is bringing a new barter-like trade pattern in Congo, such as infrastructures for minerals, by extension, capacity building for minerals or technological transfer for minerals. Congolese cannot mortgage all their resources and forever. Minerals do not grow like trees. Congolese will finally need to repair the Chinese-built infrastructures themselves and technology transfer is needed for that end. These plans constitute a prelude to Congo’s full industrialization (everything can also be done simultaneously) to enable the country to transform its natural resources on the spot and create employment for its people, starting from the rural areas (cooperatives, micro-credits).
 
5.9. Chinese cheap goods flooding Congolese markets
 
It is not enough for Congolese people to be content with cheap Chinese goods flooding their markets. The DRC has to revive its own manufacturing industry in partnership with China, of course. The main criticism against the Chinese in the DRC is that they are even selling doughnuts which Congolese can cook themselves and that Congolese small businesses face closure. The Congolese are selling the same cheap goods from China anyway, so what is the difference? However, to solve this problem, the Chinese can revive the agricultural sector which has a huge potential in Congo, especially many old café, rubber, tea, cocoa, palm oil… plantations now abandoned for year throughout the DRC. There is a huge potential there instead of competing with Congolese small shopkeepers. Moreover, the Congolese law says that retails must be left to the locals although it is hard for the government to implement it.
 
Many Chinese are learning Congolese languages, especially Lingala, one of the most spoken national languages in the DRC.
 
Some Chinese may convert to the Christian religion which is dominant in Africa in general and in the DRC in particular. They may also take Congolese wives.
 
Let us now consider the Congolese side:
 
5.10. The deficiencies of the Congolese State
 
The DRC is a vast country. China is only three times bigger than the DRC. No leader has succeeded in administering it efficaciously, from King Leopold II up to Joseph Kabila. The consequences are well known : very weak implementation of the law, weak public institutions, corruption, less transparency in the exploitation of Congo’s natural and mineral resources, salaries that could be branded “a pittance” to workers, development of an informal exploitation of mineral and natural resources and its link to conflicts, widespread impunity due to lack of an adequate judiciary.
 
“Affairism” - running state affairs as if they were one’s own business - is a noticeable feature of Joseph Kabila’s government (at one time, even the presidential website featured adverts) and “military commercialism” is practiced by most of the generals in the east as denounced by Global Witness.[55]
 
A climate of impunity prevails in Congo, although four Congolese warlords have been brought the Hague-based International Criminal court to answer for crimes against humanity they committed.
 
The Congolese state is still characterized by patrimonialism or the resurgence of the ‘Shadow State Economy’ and incumbent elite with substantial stakes in it, the economy is heavily dollarized, clientalism, the culture of kickbacks, nepotism (because the President is a Katangan, the Katangans think they should enjoy top jobs in his administration), military commercialism, proxy wars, insurgencies, warlordism, natural and mineral resources looting and smuggling short changing mining contracts, massacres, rapes, displacement…!
 
Corruption is rife in the ministry of agriculture. One Chinese expert told this writer that the Chinese abandoned many agriculture projects in Congo because the minister of agriculture was constantly asking for “his commission” (that is bribes before you are granted a contract).
 
However, there is room for optimism. Peace has been restored except in some parts of the east of the country where warlords and armed groups are still operating, especially around the mining areas. After the 2006 elections, all the state institutions are functioning but they need to become more efficacious.
 
5.11. Joseph Kabila has declared war against the “politics of the belly”.
 
President Joseph Kabila has declared “zero tolerance” against corruption and currently many ministers and army generals are languishing in jail either for embezzling or for smuggling, including the former minister of rural development Philippe Undji. Joseph Kabila recently outlined some his achievements during his 10 year-long tenure of office, including the organization of the first democratic elections in 46 years, the construction of new infrastructures, the restoration of peace and the reunification of the country. Kabila even told the Congolese parliament to revise the budget because the members of parliament (MP) allocated themselves more money than civil servants, the army and the police (so Congolese MP represent their own interests not the people’s); he ordered the suspension of illegal mining activities in Eastern Congo’s conflict areas but Rwanda and the London Stock Exchange felt the pinch. What happened? On 27 February 2011 Kabila’s residence in Kinshasa was attacked as a result by hundreds of assailants and gunmen “from outside the country”, 19 of whom were killed and eight loyalist soldiers were also killed. It was a failed coup attempt according to the official sources, as Hogg (2011) reported.[56]
 
5.12. Joseph Kabila ready to also crack down on Chinese profiteering
 
Peter Lee reports that in February 2010, China received a jolt of unfavorable publicity courtesy of Kabila’s ruling party as a parliamentary commission reported on Gecamines’$23 million problem of the missing signing fee.[57] 
Lee suggests that although there was no implication made that China was at fault, the story was combined with circumstantial details of less-than-stellar Chinese performance on unrelated cellular network and agricultural projects in a critical and widely circulated report by the London-based newsletter Africa-Asia Confidential.
[58]
According to the report, to demonstrate he is not in Beijing’s pocket, Kabila let it be known that his office was ready to crack down on potential Chinese profiteering:
The Congolese shareholders say that they are getting tougher in negotiations. Before, they had to “close their eyes” to certain details, such as feasibility studies carried out by the same company that would later implement the project, a practice that led to overestimating of costs. Since November 2009, the quality control assignments of all infrastructure projects within the Sicomines framework have been subject to international tendering.[59] Nevertheless, many Chinese and international businesses continue to expand in the DRC. In 2014, the Chinese will start their copper production with all their investments intact. Chinese and Congolese will often have differences in their partnership. Things happen. That shows that this is an engaging and active partnership. Congolese and Chinese are able to talk to each other directly and iron out their differences without Western interference.
 
6. Conclusion
 
China is very much becoming the key partner the DRC has right now to rebuild its state institutions and its infrastructures, stable enough to support democracy, public services delivery, law and order. All the channels of interactions are now activated between China and the DRC, including, trade links, investment flows, aid, debt cancellation, mutual support in institutional of global government, flows of people to China and Congo vice-versa for training and capacity building…
 
China is systematically investing in Congo right now where others only see in Congo ‘a looters’ bazzar’; even though China is ready to cooperate in some projects with Congo’s other Western partners. Clearly, the diversification of its trading partners is the way forward for the DRC to develop its economy and improve its people’s living standards after years of Western powers-induced wars
 
Politically, the DRC refuses to be blackmailed by the West and Western powers-controlled global financial institutions and the Chinese Embassy in Kinshasa often flexes its muscles when it comes to defending China’s interests in Congo and sides with Congo when it spots an unfair treatment from other powerful countries. Congo sees China as “a better partner in development” whether its traditional partners fret it or not. The criteria must be mutual benefit for both sides. From the Congolese government point of view, it needs to manage its relations with China well to benefit its economy and citizens on the basis of South-South Cooperation Win-Win Cooperation (SSWWC) of equals.
 
The Congolese government, weak though it is, now feels quite empowered and can stand its ground and stick to its own position in the face of pressure from Western powers and the West-controlled international financial institutions. The China-Congo partnership has brought about a “paradigm shift”. We must not forget that Congolese and Chinese (brought from Macau and Hong Kong) were subjected to slave labour together in Congo to build King Leopold’s first railway in Congo. They cannot betray each other. We can say with certitude that, thanks to its partnership with China, the DRC’s relations with Western powers and the West-controlled international financial institutions will never be the same again. It has changed for ever from a master-servant relation to a relation of equals.
 
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[2] Ibid.,
[3]Gikupa, Diana Joachim “Rdc-Chine : A.Muzito et D. Binguo signent deux nouveaux accords, L'Avenir Quotidien, 26/07/2010.
[5] Agence Congolaise de Presse): http://www.digitalcongo.net/article/74676
[6] Lee, Peter. (2010) ‘China has a Congo copper headache’, Asia Times Online, 11 March 2010.
[7]Financial Times, “African Scramble”, 29 September 2007.
[8]Financial Times : ‘Donors Press Congo Over $9 Bln China Minerals Deal’, , London, 9 February 2009.
[9] Laurent Kabila - whose first 10 trips did not take him out of Africa after inauguration and the 11th of which was to China as Martens (2002:284) suggests
[10] Global Witness: “China and Congo: Friends in Need”:A report by Global Witness on the Democratic Republic of Congo, March 2011. http://www.globalwitness.org/sites/default/files/library/friends_in_need_en_lr.pdf
[11] http://raid-uk.org/index.php
[12]Schlamp, H-J. (2011) ‘Congo’s Future:A Western Protectorate in Africa?’, The Spiegel, 17 August 2011.
  [13] Lokongo, A.R. (2009) Sino-DRC contracts to thwart the return of Western patronage [Online], Available: http://www.pambazuka.org/en/category/africa_china/54567 [3 November 2009].
 [14] Ibid.,
 [15] Hotter, Andrea (2010) ‘Freeport Gets Thumbs Up For Congo’s Tenke License’, Dow Jones Newswire, 22 October 2010.
 [16]Banro Corporation : ‘Annual Information Form For The Financial Year Ended 31 December 2010’, 29 March 2011.
 [17]http://www.gomafocus.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=164:terror-incognito-the-us-conspiracy-behind-musevenis-wars&catid=47:enquetes-et-rapport&Itemid=40
[18]http://www.chinaafricarealstory.com/2011/08/guest-post-lets-argue-about-china-congo.html
 [19]Stefaan Marysse & Sara Geenen (2009), “Win-win or unequal exchange ? The case of the Sino-Congolese cooperation agreements”, Institute of Development Policy and Management, University of Antwerp, Belgium /J. of Modern African Studies, 47, 3 (2009), pp. 371–396, Cambridge University Press 2009.
 [20]L’Avenir. 2007. ‘ Editorial’, Kinshasa, 22.9.2007.
[21] Gettleman, J. (2009) ‘An Interview with Kabila’, New York Times, 3 April 2009.
[22]De Witte, Ludo. (2000). The Assassination of Patrice Lumumba, Paris: Karthala; p.55.
 [23]Behar, Richard ,“Mineral Wealth of the Congo ”, Fast Company Magazine, 1 June 2008.
[24]AFP : ‘Présidentielle en RDC: le candidat Kabila fait un bilan “positif” de son mandat’, 15 septembre 2011
[25]Braeckman, Colette “Congo: on allait voir ce qu’on allait voir”, Le Soir, 24 avril 2008.
[26]http://www.digitalcongo.net/article/48595 
[27]Tim Whewell, “China to seal $9bn DR Congo deal”, BBC Newsnight14 April 2008.
[28]Lokongo, A.R. (2009) Sino-DRC contracts to thwart the return of Western patronage [Online], Available: http://www.pambazuka.org/en/category/africa_china/54567 [3 November 2009].
[29]Le Potentiel. 2008. ‘Le dossier chinois est passé à l’Assemblée Nationale qui a annoncé en avoir officiellement pris act’
[30]Stefaan Marysse & Sara Geenen (2009), “Win-win or unequal exchange ? The case of the Sino-Congolese cooperation agreements”, Institute of Development Policy and Management, University of Antwerp, Belgium /J. of Modern African Studies, 47, 3 (2009), p.373, Cambridge University Press 2009.
[31]Le Potentiel. 2008a. ‘Pour les députés de l’Opposition àl’Assemblée nationale: Contrat Chine-RDC:
encore des éclaircissements ’, Kinshasa, 10.5.2008.
Le Potentiel. 2008b. ‘Contrats Chinois: rendez-vous dans une anne′e’, Kinshasa, 14.5.2008.
[32]Edinger, H. & J. Jansson. 2008. ‘China stirs the DRC financing pot’, Mining Weekly, available at :
http://www.miningweekly.com/article.php?a_id=142399
[33]John Farmer and Ann Talbot, “China steps up investment in Congo as war in east continues”, World Socialist Web Site, 15 July 2008: http://www.wsws.org/articles/2008/jul2008/cong-j15.shtml
[34]Kabamba, R. 2008. ‘Contrat Chine-RDC: le pouvoir de Kinshasa floue le peuple’, available at :
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[35]Braeckman, C. (2011) ‘Vital Kamerhe, le savoir faire d’un ambitieux’, Le Soir, 17 aout 2011.
 Or :
[36]Lyndo, J. (2011) ‘Interview à l’Honorable Vital Kamerhe’, Matalana du Gabon, 24 Mars 2011.
[37]Bawden and Shalvey, K.(2011) ‘The era of ‘owned by China’. Huge foreign reserves give emerging superpower ever tighter grip in business, finance and politics’, guardian.co.uk, 12 January 2011.
[38]China Daily (13 June 2011). ‘Hillary Clinton Warns Africa Of ‘New Colonialism’”,
[39]Petras, J (2011) ‘Washington’s Long War Against Africa’, Eurasia Review: News and Analysis, 14 April 2011.                                                                            
[40]Kirongozi Ichalanga. 2008. ‘Contrat RDC-Entreprises chinoises: point de vue d’un expert, spe′cialiste
de la Chine’, Congolite 19.5.2008.
[41]Okitonembo Westhongunda, L. 2008. ‘Contrats Chinois : une analyse purement juridique’, Congolite,
available at: http://www.congoforum.be/fr/analysedetail.asp?subitem=&id=146216&analyse=
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[42]Mbelu, J. P. 2007. ‘Les accords signés avec la Chine créeront-ils un Congo différent?’, Congolite
27.9.2007.
[43]Lee, Peter. (2010) ‘China has a Congo copper headache’, Asia Times Online, 11 March 2010.
 [44]Tim Whewell“China’s ‘win-win’ in Africa”, BBC Newsnight14 April 2008.
[45]Alterinfo. 2008. ‘Les contrats chinois en RDC: un nouvel ordre e′conomique pour l’Afrique? ’
and comments, available at : http://www.alterinfo.net/Les-contrats-chinois-enRe′publique-
Démocratique-du-Congo-Un-nouvel-ordre-économique-pour-l-Afrique-_a20137.html
[46]Kabwe, W. 2007. ‘Crédit Chinois’, Le Potentiel, Kinshasa, 19.9.2007.
[47]Tshikwenda, G. 2008. ‘Contrats passés entre la RDC et le groupe d’entreprises chinoises: les enjeux
de la convention minière RDC-Chine, analyse des experts congolais’, available at : http://www.
freewebs.com/mushizi,
[48]Félicien Mbikayi Cimanga “Investissements chinois en RDC : ‘Oui, mais pas à n’importe quel prix !’ ”, Rapport à la Commission Justice et Paix, Bruxelles, Octobre 2008.
[49]Rory Carroll, “Return of mining brings hope of peace and prosperity to ravaged Congo”, The Guardian, 5 July 2006.
[50]Source: Alliance Belgo-Congolaise Code Agricole de la RDC :
    http://www.ngoma.cd/images/1/1d/Dernier_projet_de_loi_du_Code_Agricole_en_RDC.pdf[51]Lokongo, A.R. (2009) Sino-DRC contracts to thwart the return of Western patronage [Online], Available: http://www.pambazuka.org/en/category/africa_china/54567 [3 November 2009].
 
[52]Radio Okapi: “Kinshasa: soixante pièces d’ivoires saisies à l’aéroport de N’djili”, 15 juillet 2010.
[53]Sapa-dpa: “Chinese prostitutes resist effort to rescue them from Africa”, 1 January 2011.
[54]Bloomberg News, “China Railway Group Denies Abuse of Congolese Workers”, 27 January 2010.
[55]Global Witness, 1 Nov. 2008. “Resource plunder still driving eastern Congo conflict”.
[56]Hogg, J. (2011) ‘DR Congo exhibits hundred held for Kabila attack’, Reuters, 7 March 2011.
[57] Lee, Peter. (2010) ‘China has a Congo copper headache’, Asia Times Online, 11 March 2010.
[58]Africa-Asia Confidential (London): “Kinshasa’s Missing Millions - Evidence of Grand Corruption Mounts in Beijing's Showcase $6 billion Barter Deal with the Kinshasa Government", 15 February 2010.