V-8. Sino-US-Russian Policies and Africa

Convener: O. Igho Natufe (Institute of World History, Kyiv, Ukraine); e-mail: oinatufe@ukr.net

The election of Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States (US) has caused trepidations in several countries and regions, including Africa, with most of them frightened by the impending uncertainties that may come from a Trump presidency. During his campaign for the presidency, Trump articulated various positions which gave rise to this wave of global anxiety. He considered Russia’s President, Vladimir Putin a better leader than his soon-to-be predecessor, US President Barack Obama, saying that he could construct a rapprochement with the former on US-Russia relations. He questioned the contributions of member-states of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) who have failed to meet their membership obligations, and hinted that defaulting members should not expect NATO’s support if attacked by a third party; a proposition which renders obsolete NATO Treaty’s Article 5 that says an attack on one is an attack on all members. His condemnation of regional trade agreements involving the US, particularly the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with Canada and Mexico, the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) with the European Union, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TTP) with countries of Asia Pacific, which has been signed but not ratified by parliaments of its signatories. He views these trade agreements as injurious to US industrialization and economic prosperity. In their place, he intends to enter into bilateral trade agreements with individual countries. He also promised to discard the 5+1 nuclear agreement with Iran. His anti-immigration and anti-Muslim policy raises fears in several continents, including Africa. He has challenged Beijing’s “One China Policy”. All of the above were articulated before his inauguration on January 20, 2017. This Panel shall explore the global ramifications of Trump’s policies vis-à-vis Russia and China, with emphasis on Africa. Will a US-Russia rapprochement lead to a new Yalta; and how would this affect Africa? How will a US anti-China trade policy impact on Chinese policy in Africa?