China is a nation that has been at the forefront of technological advancement for all the decades of the post-modern era. The Chinese build on the simple and underrated to effect that which is both complex and effective. Moreso, the concept of railway systems which go across national borders in the stead of airline systems and shipping systems possess a sturdier promise even to the understanding of a layman. Indeed, history dates the emergence of trains alike prior to that of cargo airplanes but the idea to designate strips of land for this purpose i.e., the belt and road initiative was not spearheaded by the Europeans who once monopolized it, but by the worlds’ leading exporter: the Chinese Republic.
China remains the world’s highest exporting nation by a large margin of $581,000 million dollars. The difference between America and Germany, who come in at second and third, is $175 million – a fraction of China’s lead. Just as much as it ever was, industrial acceleration is a watchword for China. The Chinese have not taken their advantage for granted and have set their sights on Africa to replicate the “Belt and Road Initiative” with African hosting nations. And it has come as no surprise that Africa, as an exporting nation, whose wealth is largely extraction based, whose labor is relatively cheap, and whose policies are open to foreign investors is the new mark for the Chinese Republic.
So no wonder that China has begun the initiative of the standard gauge railway from the coastal port of Mombasa to the Kenyan capital Nairobi, as one of the interstate attempts to complete the regional rail network linking Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, and South Sudan. The emergence of this initiative will strengthen the economic standing of all African host nations at large, and it will also tackle the onset of geo-colonialization by giving African states greater autonomy over their exportation processes. That is to say, the African belt and road initiative (Standard Gauge Railway) will foster trade between African nations and on the inter-continental frontier alike.
The dark continent will see greater opportunities for its young labor force, minimize the deadweight loss and pollution from air and sea transportation, and promote commercial activity between neighbouring countries. The rail network initiative holds the promise of the leverage of much needed infrastructure in dystopian African states, ending the patron and foreign-aid dynamics that undermine emerging African businesses and provide an added source of income for the Chinese corporate sectors. But it also represents one other thing: the unison of two different philosophies on an interracial and intercontinental frontier. The Chinese are a republic who believe “Do or do not- there is no try.” And I believe that this irrevocable ethos will help secure the foundation of the future of Africa’s digitals and millennial generations alike.
As the manufacturing era of old core countries comes fully under the stronghold of the digital era, it is anticipated that the Yuan, China’s currency, will grow even further in its dominion relative to the dollar. Africa is not the only nation which is anticipating the reception of the vital asset of transportation infrastructure from China. A China-Myanmar railway system, China-Pakistan railway systems, China-India railway systems and other such initiatives are being undertaken by the Chinese Republic. Using its transportation/railway network know-how to advance in the stead of the dollars trans-European political affiliations, it is easy to understand why we will see more of China as a defending industrial forerunner.