African mining for Russia

African mining for Russia

The global power politics of Putin is taking a new course – to Africa. He aimed at the resources. Lavrov even declares a new “world order.”

There has been so much” Africa “in Russian foreign policy since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was in Rwanda recently, then he went to South Africa, his deputy Mikhail Bogdanov was received in Congo, Kinshasa.

In March this year, the main Russian diplomat visited Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Angola and Ethiopia – close contacts and the leadership of the USSR were maintained with these countries. The President of the Central African Republic, Faustin-Archange Touadéra, met with President Putin at the International Economic Forum in St. Petersburg.

“Putin’s policy of power has a new global vector: in June, Russia assumed the presidency of the UN Security Council, a unique chance to redefine milestones in a new way.” As in the Cold War, an important role is played by the African countries”.

Minister Lavrov spoke in Rwanda about a new “world order”, an important place in which is envisaged for Africa. Rwandan President Paul Kagame presides over the African Union this year and he plans to breathe new life into it: “Increasing the number of our own peacekeeping missions, reducing dependence on the West – a diplomatic offensive from Russia is very welcome”.

The African continent has long been in the focus of attention of the superpowers.” Since the moment when Europe has occupied itself with a predominantly migratory problem, and the US president has proclaimed the slogan “America first” Chinese, Hindus, Turkish and Japanese are seeking to make profitable deals with African countries.

“Russia does not want to lag behind,” says Ronak Gopaldas, who heads the South African consulting company Signal Risk. According to him, Russia primarily relies on a tough power policy, spiced with military cooperation and energy diplomacy. “From 2005 to 2015, Russia’s direct investment in Africa grew by 185%,” and Gopaldas points out that the main interests for cooperation are concentrated in such areas as nuclear energy, healthcare projects, telecommunications, encryption of government data, security of airports and borders, as well as oil and gas. “Large Russian banks are financing large projects: for example, pipelines – that African authorities cannot afford it alone.” “Russia’s weapons are cheaper and, as a rule,” bundled up “with mechanics and pilots,”.

The Russians want to expand their military presence in Africa – for several years now Russia has been looking for a suitable maritime base on the continent. The President of Sudan, Omar al-Bashir, who is wanted by the International Tribunal, offered Putin a base in the Red Sea. The Russian president accepted the offer, promising the dictator to arm the Sudanese army in return.

At the same time, the Russian company M-Invest Ltd. received the right to develop gold mines in African countries and behind these companies is the oligarch Yevgeny Viktorovich Prigozhin.

In the north of the Central African Republic (CAR) there are deposits of gold, oil, diamonds and uranium – almost all fields have not yet been developed. The problem is that the power in the north of the CAR is in the hands of Mahamat al-Khatim Noureddine Adam, the leader of the Central African rebel group, the Popular Front for the Rebirth of Central African Republic. The Russians are very interested in African uranium, while Rosatom, the Russian state corporation, enriches 36% of the world’s uranium, mostly for peaceful purposes. Rosatom seeks to quench the incredible energy hunger in Africa.

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Arnaud Lefevre

Arnaud Lefevre is the Chief Executive Officer of Dynatom International. Arnaud is in charge of the international development of the business portfolio.