International Department of the CPC Central Committee       BEIJING REVIEW
Major events in January 2018       MONTHLY
January 14: Chinese FM rejects claim China's financing increases Africa's debt burden
 

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on January 14 rebuked a false claim that China's financing has increased the debt burden of African countries.

Wang, on a visit to Angola, made the comment while holding a joint press conference with his Angolan counterpart Manuel Domingos Augusto.

Such a claim, which is made with ulterior motives, is an outright false accusation, said Wang, when asked for a response to the claim that Chinese financing to African countries, including Angola, has increased their debt burden and is stringed with political considerations.

Wang noted that with deepening Sino-African cooperation in recent years, China has indeed increased its financing support for African countries.

In the process, however, China has always adhered to the following fundamental principles, Wang stressed.

First, Wang said, China's financing is in response to Africa's demands for self-development. A country would have a huge need for capital in its primary stage of economic take-off and industrialization and Africa is no exception, he said.

China has provided financing to the best of its ability in response to the demands of African countries, which has served as a timely help for their socio-economic development and is highly valued and welcomed by them, he said.

Second, China has never attached political conditions, he said.

Like African countries, China also had memories of a bitter past when, with its economic lifeline controlled by foreigners, it was unfairly treated and even exploited and oppressed, Wang said.

Therefore, when providing aid to and engaging in cooperation with Africa, China will not repeat what Western countries did and will never impose its own views on others, he said.

Third, China has always followed the principle of mutual benefit and win-win results, he said.

Sino-African cooperation is in essence part of South-South cooperation, and a key characteristic of the latter is that sustained and long-lasting common development can only be achieved through treating each other on an equal footing and ensuring mutual benefit, he said.

To this end, China's financing support for Africa has always gone through a strenuous process of feasibility study with a market-driven approach so that due economic and social effects could be achieved after fulfilling each one of the cooperative projects, he said.

Wang pointed out that the current debt status in some African countries is the accumulative result after a long period of time.

China is a staunch supporter of African countries' efforts to remedy the problem through sustainable development and economic diversification, he said.

China will continue to do its part in helping Africa enhance its self-development capacity and realize sound economic and social growth, he said.

Wang expressed optimism about Africa's economic growth, saying that China is pleased to see that the African economy had bottomed out last year and that African countries have come to realize the importance of sustainable development.

Citing a Chinese saying that goes: only the feet know if the shoes fit, Wang said that African countries are the best qualified to speak about their cooperation with China.

There is another Chinese saying that goes: people have a sense of natural justice, said Wang , stressing that the African people are in the best position to decide who is Africa's true friend and most reliable partner.

(Xinhua News Agency January 14, 2018)

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