Past Event


China’s Agricultural Investment in Africa and its Compliance with VGGT

31 May 2017 12:30–14:00

Room 221,
IDS Building,
Library Road,

The Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests in the Context of National Food Security (VGGT) and Principles for Responsible Investment in Agriculture and Food Systems (RAI) represent a global consensus on standards for responsible practices to regulate fast-increasing foreign agricultural investment. This might eventually benefit the contribution to land property protection of small local farmers, the eradication of hunger, food security and other sustainable development goals of UN 2030.

Since 2000, China has become increasingly involved in the African agricultural industry and this has widely provoked ardent discussion. The interview-based report primarily attempts to answer key questions:

  • What are the modes, scale, geographical allocation, and drivers underlying the trend of increased LSLBIA by Chinese state-owned enterprises and other firms?
  • Does the Chinese Government have any measures in place to regulate extraterritorial LSLBIA?
  • To what extent such investments conform to the VGGT, RAI regulatory frameworks, and what lessons and good practices could be learnt from it?

About the speaker

Prof. Haisen Zhang is the Director of the Centre for International Development and Innovation Studies (CIDIS) at the University of International Business and Economics (UIBE). At present, he is a one-year academic visitor of the University of Oxford China Centre. In 2010-2011, he was a visiting professor of American University, and a visiting research fellow at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in Washington, collaborating with Prof. Deborah Brautigam. Prof. Zhang has been employed as a senior consultant for the Ministry of Commerce and the Ministry of Agriculture of China, China Development Bank, Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and the Department for International Development (DfID). He has led research projects on Chinese foreign assistance, Global Value Chain development, foreign direct investment, trade and technology transfer to developing countries. Prof. Zhang has also published academic papers and books on China-Africa development studies.

About the Centre for Rising Powers in Development (CRPD)

This event has been organised under the auspices of the Centre for Rising Powers and Global Development (CRPD). CRPD is at the forefront of research and practical analysis that helps connect governments, donors, civil society, and academia to explore new way to address global development challenges, with a particular focus on the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) and other increasingly influential middle-income countries

Key contacts

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Alice Webb

Communications and Impact Officer


+44 (0)1273 915803


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