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SAIS-CARI and Boston University Global Development Policy Center to announce drop in Chinese Lending to Africa in 2019; management transfer of Chinese Loans to Africa Database


New data derived from the Chinese Loans to Africa Database shows Chinese loan commitments to African countries dropped 30 percent in 2019 to $7 billion, down from $9.9 billion in 2018. Lending to historically large borrowers that have negotiated debt relief with China, including Angola and Ethiopia, has fallen, as lending to other borrowers has increased. The top five borrowers in 2019 were Ghana, South Africa, Egypt, Côte d'Ivoire and Nigeria.
On Tuesday, March 30, the SAIS China Africa Research Initiative (SAIS-CARI) and the Boston University Global Development Policy Center (GDP Center) will host a webinar featuring a demonstration of the Chinese Loans to Africa Database and a presentation of 2019 data, such as the total amount and average size of Chinese projects signed and the Chinese big four banks’ loan commitments to Africa.
Additionally, during the webinar, SAIS-CARI will announce it will transfer management of the Chinese Loans to Africa Database to the GDP Center, which will produce all future updates. SAIS-CARI developed the database in 2007 to track loans from Chinese policy and commercial banks to African governments and state-owned enterprises. 


Deborah Brautigam
Director, SAIS China Africa Research Initiative
Bernard L. Schwartz Professor of International Political Economy, Johns Hopkins SAIS
Kevin P. Gallagher
Director, Boston University Global Development Policy Center
Professor of Global Development Policy, Boston University
Kevin Acker
Research Manager, SAIS China Africa Research Initiative 

Time and Date

Tuesday, March 30, 2021
9:00 a.m.-10:15 a.m. EDT 


This webinar is open to the public and media, with registration

Media Contacts

Jason Lucas
Communications Manager
Johns Hopkins SAIS
+1 (202) 663-5620
Marie Foster
Program Coordinator
SAIS China Africa Research Initiative
+1 (202) 663-5962 

About the Speakers

Deborah Brautigam is the Bernard L. Schwartz Professor of Political Economy and Director of the China Africa Research Initiative at Johns Hopkins SAIS. Her most recent books include The Dragon’s Gift: The Real Story of China in Africa and Will Africa Feed China? Before joining Johns Hopkins SAIS in 2012, she taught at Columbia University and American University. Brautigam’s teaching and research focuses on international development strategies, governance, and foreign aid.
Brautigam is a two-time recipient of the Fulbright research award and has received fellowships from the Council on Foreign Relations, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and research grants from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Centre for Economic Policy and Research (CEPR). She has served as a consultant for Transparency International, the United Nations, the World Bank, the African Development Bank, and USAID. Brautigam has provided commentary to the Financial Times, New York Times, The Guardian, CNN, NPR, Al-Jazeera, Voice of America, CCTV, and MSNBC. She has also served as a visiting scholar at the World Bank, a senior research fellow at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), and advised more than a dozen governments on China-Africa relations.
Kevin P. Gallagher is a Professor of Global Development Policy at Boston University’s Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies, where he directs the Global Development Policy Center. Gallagher serves on the United Nations’ Committee for Development Policy and co-chairs the T-20 Task Force on International Financial Architecture at the G-20. He previously served on the investment sub-committee of the Advisory Committee on International Economic Policy at the U.S. Department of State and on the National Advisory Committee at the Environmental Protection Agency. Gallagher has also served as a visiting or adjunct professor at several schools including Johns Hopkins SAIS. 
Gallagher has written the following books: The China Triangle: Latin America’s China Boom and the Fate of the Washington Consensus, Ruling Capital: Emerging Markets and the Reregulation of Cross-Border Finance, The Clash of Globalizations: Essays on Trade and Development Policy. He also co-authored The Dragon in the Room: China and the Future of Latin American Industrialization, The Enclave Economy: Foreign Investment and Sustainable Development in Mexico’s Silicon Valley, and Free Trade and the Environment: Mexico, NAFTA, and Beyond.
Kevin Acker is a research manager at the SAIS China Africa Research Initiative, where his research focuses on China’s overseas lending and debt relief. He is a 2019 Johns Hopkins SAIS alumnus who studied at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center. Acker previously worked in international education and consulting and holds bachelor’s degrees in economics and China studies from Binghamton University. 

SAIS China Africa Research Initiative

The SAIS China Africa Research Initiative (SAIS-CARI) launched in 2014 at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) to promote evidence-based understanding of the relations between China and African countries through high quality data collection, field research, conferences, and collaboration. The mission of SAIS-CARI is promoting research, conducting evidence-based analysis, fostering collaboration, and training future leaders to better understand the economic and political dimensions of China-Africa relations and their implications for human security and global development. 

Boston University Global Development Policy Center

The Global Development Policy Center (GDP Center) at Boston University is a university-wide center in partnership with the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies and the Vice President and Associate Provost for Research. The GDP Center’s mission is to advance policy-oriented research for financial stability, human well-being, and environmental sustainability. To fulfill its mission, it conducts rigorous policy research; provide a convening place for scholars and stakeholders; engage in policy dialogue with policy-makers, civil society, and media; and offer experiential learning for Boston University students. 

Johns Hopkins SAIS

A division of Johns Hopkins University, the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) is a global institution that offers students an international perspective on today's critical issues. For more than 75 years, Johns Hopkins SAIS has produced great leaders, thinkers, and practitioners of international relations. Public leaders and private sector executives alike seek the counsel of the faculty, whose ideas and research inform and shape policy. Johns Hopkins SAIS offers a global perspective across three campus locations: Bologna, Italy; Nanjing, China; and Washington, D.C. The school's interdisciplinary curriculum is strongly rooted in the study of international economics, international relations, and regional studies, preparing students to address multifaceted challenges in the world today.
For more information, visit or on Twitter @SAISHopkins



Monday, March 29, 2021