A delegation of US officials visiting the famous game reserve Kruger Park had an unexpected encounter. A private jet carrying representatives of the Russian oil giant Rosneft was on the tarmac of the park's airport as they were about to leave.
Until now, all firms selling petroleum products in West and Central Africa were partly supplied by Russia. But since the US slapped sanctions on Russian fuels, these companies are urgently having to review their supply schedules.
State-owned Russian geological services group RosGeo has been trying for several years to develop its interests in Africa to counter the success of its Chinese and American rivals. So far, however, the group has failed to turn its vague African cooperation agreements into concrete projects.