Economic Planet | The Great Seduction in Africa

It is the event of the year in the mining world. La Conférence Investing in African Mining Indaba, qui a eu lieu au Cap, in Africa du Sud, the mois dernier, a été le theater d’une grande offensive for les Etats-Unis et leurs allies desireux de securiser leurs approvisionements en métaux et minéraux from the future.

Never has the resource-rich African continent received so much attention from governments and companies preparing for the energy transition, particularly the electric vehicle revolution.

An electric vehicle requires minerals like graphite and cobalt six times more than a gasoline-powered vehicle. According to the International Energy Agency, demand for most of the so-called vital minerals will quadruple, at least, over the next few years. For some of them, such as lithium and graphite, demand growth forecasts are higher.

Many of these minerals are not rare. They are found in the United States and elsewhere in the world, but China outrageously dominates the refining and conversion of these resources.

This rise has become unbearable for the United States and for many countries that now want at any cost to diversify their supplies and reduce their dependence on China.

The word beginning with C was not uttered by the American envoys in Cape Town. Their rhetoric to African heads of state seeking development capital focused more on sustainable development and ESG i.e. ESG.

Jose Fernandez, the message bearer of the Biden administration, responsible for climate change and supply chain security, among other things, has sabotaged the available capital, but also the will of the United States to develop not only the sector extraction of Africa’s mineral resources, but also the entire value chain that accompanies it and that China has monopolized it so far without saying so.

Jose Fernandez even quoted the Pope to support his point. The head of the Catholic Church, during his visit to the Democratic Republic of the Congo a few days ago, had denounced the economic colonialism that has unleashed Africa and deprived this country and its neighbors of benefiting from their resources. “The Pope believed me right,” he said in his address.

China has been investing heavily in Africa for years. The case of the Democratic Republic of the Congo was not randomly selected. This country has an agreement with China that provides Chinese financing to build roads and hospitals in exchange for control of a joint venture that exploits copper and cobalt.

This agreement which was concluded under the previous Congolese government is now condemned by the present government, which it considers unfair to its country.

The DRC currently supplies most of China’s cobalt needs.

American Buyer’s Club

The United States is not alone trying to seduce Africa. The representative of the United States stressed that his country, along with several other countries, has formed a group that is ready to invest in strengthening their supply chains of important minerals, and not only in any way.

The aim of MSP [Minerals Security Partnership] It is to ensure that critical minerals are produced, processed and recycled in a way that helps countries make full use of their geological assets for economic development,” said the group, which includes Canada, Australia, France, the European Union, Japan, Finland, Norway, South Korea, the United Kingdom and Italy in addition to the United States.

The Critical Metals Buyer’s Club of America could benefit from its generosityInflation Reduction Act to the Biden government and billions of dollars in financial aid, according to US media reports, but not confirmed.

That ne sera peut-être pas suffisant for rattraper the China, which s’active on the le continent African depuis des années, mais c’est une occasion rêvée for les pays d’Afrique de faire grimper les enchères pour tirer un meilleur parti de leurs Natural Resources.

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