ECPR

Install the app

Install this application on your home screen for quick and easy access when you’re on the go.

Just tap Share then “Add to Home Screen”

ECPR

Install the app

Install this application on your home screen for quick and easy access when you’re on the go.

Just tap Share then “Add to Home Screen”

Back to Paper Details

Competing for Africa? National Political Parties, European Development Policy, and the Chinese 'Invasion' of Africa

Yannis Karagiannis
Institut Barcelona d'Estudis Internacionals – IBEI
Yannis Karagiannis
Institut Barcelona d'Estudis Internacionals – IBEI

Abstract

When a monopolist observes that a new entrant is making significant inroads in his market, he usually takes reacts by either becoming more competitive (e.g. lowering his prices) or by seeking to erect more dissuasive barriers to entry (e.g. signing long-term exclusive contracts). Does the same logic apply to international politics, and more specifically to the relation between the European Union and Africa? Does the recent "invasion" of Africa by Chinese interests lead to calls for the European Commission to take a more competitive stance, for example my relaxing its conditionality criteria? To answer these questions, I compare the electoral manifestos of both centre-left and centre-right parties in seven European countries (Belgium, France, Greece, Ireland, Spain, Portugal, and United Kingdom) since the mid-1990s (n=68). My goal is to test whether political ideology, national economic interests in Africa, or degree of support for European integration are good predictors for a national party's calls for more action by the European Commission in the great geopolitical game of influence in Africa.