What Is Going On Chinese Army In Sudan Right Now

For years now it has been speculated that China is attempting to extend their influence across the world by way of their military and economic might. Nowhere is this more evident than in their presence and increasing impact in Sudan. What’s going on with the Chinese Army in Sudan right now?

The current Chinese presence can be saw as both a military and economic investiment. In terms of military movements the Chinese have been very active in Sudan. Beginning in 2017, China has been increasing its military support of Sudan’s security and peace keeping efforts, allowing China to become a major player in Sudanese affairs. This has included dispatching peacekeepers to various hotspots in Sudan, as well as providing military training.

Along with improving the security situation in Sudan, the Chinese military has also been assisting with infrastructure development, such as the construction of hospitals, roads and bridges. This has allowed the Chinese to penetrate into local Sudanese communities. As a result, Beijing has been able to solidify its control over Sudan by aiding the local populace and providing them with essential defence technology.

Furthermore, the Chinese have made significant economic threats in the country, which has had a great influence on the strength and authority of the country. In 2018, China began investing heavily in Sudan’s state-owned oil and gas companies, and has since established a stronger foothold in the country’s economy. In addition to this, the Chinese government has granted Sudan over $2.2 billion in foreign aid, essentially giving Beijing the opportunity to shape the country’s affairs from the inside.

In its entirety, the Chinese presence in Sudan is seen as a positive move. From a humanitarian standpoint, Chinese aid has been crucial for those living in Sudan, who have been living in dire conditions for years now. It has also allowed for an improvement in security, as well as providing much-needed economic stability to the country. From a geopolitical standpoint, the Chinese presence in Sudan can also be seen as an attempt by Beijing to secure its interests in the region by creating a close ally.

China’s Influence In Sudan

What is most striking about China’s military presence in Sudan is the extent of the country’s influence. Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir has openly welcomed Chinese investment and has promised to increase his country’s ties with Beijing even further. This shows the extent to which the Chinese have become interwoven in Sudanese politics. In addition to this, news reports have even suggested that the Chinese Communist Party has direct influence in certain Sudanese political decisions, with Chinese diplomatic visits seen as normative activities.

Moreover, the Chinese have managed to convince President al-Bashir to fully support their Belt and Road Initiative. This gives China a direct route to the Middle East and Africa and a way to increase their economic foothold in these regions. Subsequently, it has been argued that China is not only expanding its influence in Sudan, but also in the Sudanese region as a whole.

Beijing is also using Sudan’s location to its advantage. As Sudan is strategically placed close to the Red Sea, the Chinese has been able to station its navy in Sudanese waters. This can be seen as an attempt to control vital parts of the European and African waters and establish itself as a superpower.

International Response To China’s Assertion in Sudan

Naturally, the increasing Chinese presence in Sudan has had a polarizing affect on international opinion. The two major issues concerning Western countries are the militarization of the country and its economic implications. The US, EU and many of their allies fear that if China becomes too powerful in the region, it will destabilize the balance of power in the area, leading to a more assertive and aggressive Chinese military presence.

Furthermore, there is also concern over the economic implications of a strong Chinese presence in Sudan. Inthe short term, Chinese investment could improve the economic situation. In the long terms, critics fear that relying too heavily on Chinese investment could lead to chronic indebtedness, as China begins to become an important source of finance and aid in the region. There are also concerns that the Chinese backing of certain oppressive regimes could strengthen these regimes, leading to a furthering of human rights abuses.

Is The China-Sudanese Relationship Summarily Negative?

However in spite of these concerns there are those hold an optimistic view of the Chinese presence in Sudan. It is often argued that Chinese investment in Sudan has allowed the country to become a more stable state and provides opportunities for economic development the country desperately needs. Some also point out that opting out of international organizations such as the African Union may limit the Sudanese’s ability to receive assistance, and further ties with Beijing could allow the country to receive more help.

For example, many welcome the Chinese-funded agricultural projects and healthcare initiatives that have been occurring in Sudan. These projects have been providing basic supplies for people living in rural communities in Sudan, and have opened up opportunities for education and employment. Supporters of Chinese investment in Sudan also point to the Chinese investment in infrastructure, as well as its policy of non-interference. Chinese leaders have said that their aim is not to directly influence Sudan’s politics, but to aid its development.

Overall, it has been argued that while there are certainly some justifiable concerns over the Chinese presence in Sudan, there are also positives to take away. For countries in the West who often lack resources to help those in need in Sudan, this could be viewed as an opportunity to assist a nation in great need. Ultimately, the relationship between Sudan and China should be viewed with a sense of constructive analysis, in order to assess its potential outcomes in the most impartial manner.

US Sanctions Against China In Sudan

The increasing Chinese presence in Sudan has unsurprisingly been met with resistance from Western countries, particularly from the US. Sanctions have been placed on China for its role in Sudanese trade and finance. These sanctions by the US have been designed to limit the Chinese’s ability to invest in Sudan, as well as deter Chinese businesses from setting up operations in Sudan. Britain is also reported to be in the process of implementing similar policies.

American foreign policy is said to be increasingly focusing on curtailing China’s influence in different countries, with Sudan being viewed as one of the primary targets. As Sudan is a major trading partner with countries in the West, it is seen as an effective way to undermine China economically.

In response, the Chinese have criticized these sanctions, arguing that they are unfair should be done away with. Supporters of the US stance, however, raise the concern that if the US is not aggressive in its ‘containment’ of Chinese expansion then it may become virtually unstoppable in its attempts to become a major world power. In such a situation, it may be difficult for Western countries to effectively respond if the Chinese become a dominant economic and military power in the region.

The Aftermath Of The Chinese Presence In Sudan

In the long term, the true implications of the Chinese presence in Sudan are yet to be fully known. It remains unclear if the Chinese will be able to maintain their influence in the region, or if their investment will be enough to bring lasting stability to the country. It is also yet to be seen if the US-China trade war will have any negative impacts on the relationship between Sudan and China.

What is certain, however, is that China is currently exercising its influence in the region. This has implications not only for Sudan, but for many other countries in the region. With China likely to become even more influential in the region, it is essential that the US and its allies come up with a comprehensive strategy that not only monitors China’s activities, but also allows them to respond effectively in case of any negative implications.


Overall, it is clear that the Chinese presence in Sudan is having a major impact on the region. Whether this is ultimately a good or bad development is yet to be seen. However, with tensions between the US and China rising, it is crucial for stakeholders in the region to come up with strategies that are able to monitor Chinese activities and effectively react to any potential consequences. This will determine the eventual outcome of this conflict.

Letha Wimmer is a military expert with more than a decade of direct experience in the U.S. Army and National Guard. She specializes in researching and writing about the world's armies and their capabilities, equipment, capabilities, strategies, organizations, and operations. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Aviation from Middle Tennessee State University as well as an Aerial Firefighting Certificate and numerous other advanced aviation certifications. She also enjoys traveling to distant lands to gain firsthand knowledge about their military forces and has written extensively for various websites on the subject.

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