Yesterday Senator Kerry came to our School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) to talk about the US relationship with China, describing it as the most consequential relationship our country has for the 21st century. He touched on China's role in Africa, positively -- a change from the past, where Secretary Clinton several times described China-Africa relations as a kind of neo-colonialism. Here's what Kerry said:
And as we’ve seen recently with the Ebola epidemic, China has also shown that it is prepared to take on a bigger role in addressing international crises – including those that emerge far from Asia, even those on the opposite side of the globe. We’re very grateful that China has committed more than $130 million to date in aid and supplies to help address the Ebola crisis. And last week, China announced its plans to dispatch a unit from the People’s Liberation Army to Liberia to help manage the crisis. That’s global leadership, and it’s important, and that cooperation with us is more than welcome.It's not been easy for the US and China to build a cooperative relationship in Africa. Much more could be done in fighting Ebola together -- a good place to build some positive guanxi among Americans and Chinese in Africa.