A marriage of convenience on the rocks? Revisiting the Sino–Angolan relationship

Paulo de Carvalho, Dominik Kopiński, Ian Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


China's relationship with Angola - which is both the region's top oil exporter to China and recipient of the highest amount of Chinese loans ? represents a critical case when it comes to studying Sino-African relations. The Sino-Angolan relationship, forged for purely pragmatic reasons at an opportune moment of mutual need in the early 2000s, has been labelled a 'marriage of convenience'. A variety of factors have, however, altered the environment in which China first made inroads into Angola; most notably a decline in oil prices, and the 2017 political transition. These have provided fresh impetus to the Angolan political economy and relations with China. Based on interviews we show that although oil remains a central ingredient, China's role has substantially evolved. The marriage of convenience is experiencing a period of rocky introspection, one in which the notion of China having sway in Angola can finally be laid to rest.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages25
JournalAfrica Spectrum
VolumeOnline First
Early online date22 Oct 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 22 Oct 2021


  • China
  • Angola
  • Political economy
  • Bilateral trade
  • Oil


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