China Will Fund And Construct Zimbabwe’s New Parliament Building

Beijing has promised to help fund and construct a new parliament building for Zimbabwe. Chinese officials pledged $46 million for the new structure, to be built on a plot of farmland just outside the capital of Harare, according to local media.

Helping African governments erect government buildings, typically imposing and expensive symbols of the state, is one of China’s oldest diplomatic strategies on the continent. During the early years of Chinese engagement with Africa, funding public offices was an easy way for Beijing to endear itself to newly established diplomatic partners. The trend appears to be picking up again, this time prompted by requests from African heads of state, according to researchers.

China donated $25 million for the construction of twin towers in Kampala in 2011 that now house the president and vice president’s offices. Other projects include refurbishing Sierra Leone’s parliament, renovating Zambia’s main government complex and its air force barracks, Mozambique’s presidential palace, Ghana’s National Theater, plus a slew of national stadiums across Africa. Read more.