AFRICA'S INDEPENDENCE

Africa should chart own technology growth path amidst US-China tensions

Prospects look bleak for us in the South whose growth path is determined in the North.

In Summary

• We must work to determine our technology growth path, and in so doing connect with partners and regions that offer the best support and partnership.

• We have all along depended on the two countries for our technology solutions, and the current tension is a major test for us.

U.S. President Donald Trump attends a bilateral meeting with China's President Xi Jinping during the G20 leaders summit in Osaka, Japan, June 29, 2019. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque/File Photo
U.S. President Donald Trump attends a bilateral meeting with China's President Xi Jinping during the G20 leaders summit in Osaka, Japan, June 29, 2019. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque/File Photo

Policy and legal framework review are processes that take long, and changes required in sectors like technology, which are critical to growth and development, if not anchored locally and innovation locally secured, it will see many people especially in Africa suffer big time.

It's not encouraging that global supremacy wars coupled with international trade disputes seem destined to slow down technological development that humanity seems to have hinged their next phase of lives.

The worst is the ongoing battle between the United States of America and China, over innovation and development in technology, and countries largely in Africa that depend on technology imports from these two countries to determine the development trajectory in regions, stand to be hit hard, because of this dispute, if they fail to invest locally in innovations and research in the sector.

 
 

The prospects currently look bleak for us in the South whose growth path is determined in the North, and we will be unwillingly engaged in a war that we have little stakes, save for the fact that, we wait to adopt technologies developed elsewhere.

We have all along depended on the two countries for our technology solutions, and the current tension is a major test for us.

For example, it's worrying to see, since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic and issuance of containment measures including the closing of educational institutions in Kenya, our discussions have centrally been on the opening dates, and little on innovations that these institutions should do to ensure learning continues, offline or online.

That even institutions of higher learning, many teaching technology and innovations are stuck with opening dates to allow physical opening continuation of academic programmes, instead of using the pandemic as a trigger for establishing different ways of offering learning.

Little is being discussed on the digital literacy program (school laptop project) earlier launched by the government and why such a project is not helping us deal with the abnormal environment we are living in.

We will be innovation giants and reap the enormous advantages that come with technology, if we continue to be aloof to what is happening between USA and China, which has direct bearing on development and enhanced service delivery to citizens.

We must work to determine our technology growth path, and in so doing connect with partners and regions that offer the best support and partnership in our path to innovation.

 
 

If you want to understand that the new trade rules introduced by the US on restrict to use computer chips from Chinese firms is global politics presenting as a trade dispute, see the on goings following the arrest of Huawei Technologies chief financial Officer Meng Wanzhou, in Canada and her intended extradition to the United States, documents released on Thursday showed.

In the application against the extradition to the US, her lawyers have based their applications in part on what allege to be destruction of the integrity of the judicial process by United States President Donald Trump and other senior members of the administration by their intention to use Meng “as a bargaining chip in a trade dispute.”

This is made believable to observers and international relations experts when the Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau was quoted saying that in their conversation with President Trump, he persuaded him not to terminate a final trade deal with China pending the resolution of Ms Meng case.

It's hard to convince anybody that the case involving a Huawei employee and the USA has nothing related to use of trade and politics to assert global dominance.