A recent survey commissioned by the South Africa’s Ichikowitz Family Foundation titled African Youth Survey 2020 has revealed that Africa’s youth approve of China as one of the most influential countries in Africa.
The survey interviewed about 4200 young people aged 18-24 from 14 African countries. According to CGTN AFRICA, the results of the survey reported that “74 percent of respondents said that China was one of the nations, internationally, which held a significant sway in the continent. China ranked second only to the United States, which was marginally ahead with 79 percent of respondents saying it was one of the most influential countries”. In the same survey, 79 percent of respondents said that China’s effect on the continent is good. The United States and the United Kingdom scored 83% and 82% respectively.
China’s president, Xi Jinping, was also regarded by African youth as a primary driver of their future in the next five years, CGTN AFRICA reported.
In 2016, Afrobarometer conducted a similar survey interviewing about 54,000 citizens in 36 countries, representing views of more than three-fourths of the continent’s population. Key findings of the survey revealed that almost two-thirds (63%) of Africans say China’s influence is “somewhat” or “very” positive, while only 15% see it as somewhat/very negative. Favorable views are most common in Mali (92%), Niger (84%), and Liberia (81%). The United States of America, according to 30% of respondents in the survey, was the most popular model for national development, China scored 24% in the same category.
A 2018 Pew Research survey indicated that a “median of 45% of all people have a favorable view of China, while 43% hold an unfavorable view. Majorities or pluralities in 12 countries give China positive marks, with favorable attitudes most prevalent in Africa, the Middle East and parts of Asia.”