China’s increasing involvement in arms dealing in Africa has raised concerns about the potential implications for the continent’s peace and security. As China expands its economic and political influence in Africa, its arms sales to various African nations have also witnessed a rapid surge, and this trend demands a closer analysis of its impact on the peace and security in the region.

China’s strategic decision to expand its arms trade with African nations has been primarily driven by economic and geopolitical objectives. African countries often find Chinese arms deals attractive due to lower costs compared to Western alternatives and a more lenient approach to human rights concerns. However, it is important to recognize that this expansion comes at a cost that undermines the continent’s peace and security.

China’s arms sales to African nations pose a direct threat to the peace and security of the continent. The proliferation of weapons perpetuates conflict and exacerbates existing tensions between states. Additionally, the influx of cheap Chinese weapons often ends up in the hands of non-state armed groups, further destabilizing regions and fueling civil wars and insurgencies.

Furthermore, China’s arms dealing expansion in Africa not only contributes to conflicts but also obstructs efforts made by international organizations to mediate and resolve these conflicts. African Union peacekeeping missions, supported by international partners, have been working tirelessly to pacify war-torn regions. However, the availability of Chinese weapons often bolsters the capabilities of belligerent parties, thereby prolonging conflicts and jeopardizing peacekeeping efforts.

Moreover, China’s arms trade in Africa and its potential impact on peace and security extend beyond the direct provision of weapons. The rapid expansion of Chinese arms sales in the continent inadvertently enables the emergence of proxy wars, wherein rival factions supported by different external actors engage in conflict on African soil.

This intensification of proxy wars not only endangers the lives of countless Africans but also exacerbates regional tensions, potentially leading to a wider regional instability.

China’s assertive expansion of arms dealing in Africa is not without self-interest. Aside from economic gains, China also seeks access to strategic resources and political influence across the continent. By providing weapons and military equipment, China cultivates political alliances with African countries, often undermining good governance and human rights considerations. This reinforces the notion that China’s arms deals in Africa serve not only as a means to secure economic interests but also as a tool to enhance its geopolitical influence on the continent.

China’s thriving arms dealing expansion in Africa holds significant implications for the peace and security of the continent. The proliferation of cheap Chinese weapons exacerbates conflicts, empowers non-state actors, hampers peacekeeping operations, and fuels proxy wars. Moreover, this unregulated expansion by China undermines efforts to achieve lasting peace and stability in Africa.

To address this issue, African nations need to engage in stronger regional cooperation, bolster arms control frameworks, and actively seek alternative sources of security cooperation beyond Chinese arms deals. Additionally, the international community, including regional organizations and major powers, must hold China accountable for its actions and work towards establishing a more comprehensive and regulated arms trade regime that prioritizes promoting peace and security over individual state interests.

By acknowledging the detrimental impact of China’s arms dealing expansion in Africa and taking proactive steps, Africa can ensure a secure and stable future for its people, free from external interventions that intensify conflicts and hinder socio-economic development.