The United States of America has for long been seen as the pillar of economic success and maturity of political affairs. However, China has recently made a name for itself for being an economic giant, whose growth model has become something to be desired.
It is now emerging that as far as adopting economic models of industrialized countries go, more countries are increasingly adopting the Chinese model over that of the USA. These findings are by a report by Afrobarometer here.
Although generally, the U.S. is in the lead, China is fast narrowing that gap. The research is said to have had 56,000 correspondents, 30% of whom ranked the United States first place, compared to the 24% that ranked China first. The graph below represent people opinion on the best economic development models:
However, when you look at regions such as North Africa, Central Africa, and the Southern Africa region. China’s popularity is pretty high, where the majority perceive their economic development model as the best; better than the United States.
Why do some like China’s model?
China rose from becoming one of the poorest countries in the world, to the second biggest economy in just three decades. That fact alone resonates well with most African countries, whose majority are in the world poor country bracket, and are trying to move away from that bracket.
China too, like modern day Africa, was primarily an agrarian country. The fact that it transformed from a mostly agricultural country to an industrial country, means is share a lot of things a lot of African countries can identify with. Currently, agriculture is the biggest source of employment across Africa.
Hence, China is seen as a more relatable economic development than the United States which transformed from an agrarian society to an industrial in a couple of hundreds of years ago. Also, African countries find China’s sweeping reforms that changed the society from agrarian to industrial society somewhat relevant to their modern economy. Albeit with some few change here and there.
China’s political policies also seem to resonate well with many African countries. As a continent, African leaders and government have been accused of siphoning money meant for a national project to fund their own personal initiatives. The United States is heavy handed on such matters as corruption, while China believes civil society activism comes second to development projects.
The United States is highly likely to stop funding or involvement in public service infrastructure and roads construction on an allegation of corruptions by the stakeholders. On the other hand, China will turn a blind eye as long as the contracted company gets paid their due.