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Feb 17, 2018

China is pushing back hard against accusations that it spied on the African Union headquarters for the past five years. According to a January report in the French newspaper Le Monde, China hacked the AU's computer networks and installed listening devices in the building that was financed and constructed by Chinese companies back in 2012.
It is likely that officials in Beijing immediately recognized that the stakes were incredibly high and that they had to get ahead of a story like this or else risk a rapid erosion of their credibility in Africa. As Chinese companies build out critical infrastructure, including data networks, communications systems and government buildings in a number of African capitals, billions of dollars in contracts could be in jeopardy if Chinese companies became associated with state-backed espionage.
This week, Eric & Cobus discuss the aftermath of the AU-spy story and what it possibly indicates about the future of China's communications strategy in Africa.
Join the discussion? Do you think these kinds of allegations hurt the Chinese in Africa or, as Beijing suggests, is it just sour grapes from the West who are increasingly concerned about China's surging engagement across Africa? Let us know what you think.