No Strings Attached to China’s $60bn Aid to Africa – President Xi Jinping
FOCAC: China to Write off African Debts
Chinese president Xi Jinping has said the country’s $60bn financial aid to African countries has no strings attached, like some western powers are known to do.
China’s offer to Africa will also see billions of dollars of debts for poorer countries written off.
On Monday, Xi Jinping opened a major summit, The Forum on China–Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), with African leaders in Beijing.
During his opening remarks, Xi Jinping told African leaders that $15bn will be given in form of grants, interest-free loans and concessional loans.
A credit line of $20bn will also be extended to the African continent while $10bn will be injected in development projects.
A total of $5bn will be used by China to buy imports from the continent.
President Xi also announced that China will write off interest-free loans for all poor African countries due at the end of 2018.
He also promised that “China-Africa cooperation must give Chinese and African people tangible benefits and successes that can be seen, that can be felt”.
President Xi said China would not interfere with the politics of African countries
“China does not interfere in Africa’s internal affairs and does not impose its own will on Africa,” said Xi earlier before the summit as he met African leaders and business representatives.
“China’s investment in Africa comes with no political strings attached.”
Xi Jinping further explained that “China’s cooperation with Africa is clearly targeted at the major bottlenecks to development”.
He warned against investing in areas which are not viable.
“Resources for our cooperation are not to be spent on any vanity projects, but in places where they count the most.”
Rwandan President Paul Kagame, who is also the African Union chairman praised Africa’s cooperation with China.
“Africa is not a zero sum game,” said Kagame.
“Our growing ties with China do not come at anyone’s expense.”
South Africa’s Cyril Ramaphosa said FOCAC would help balance benefits of the China-Africa relations.
Ramaphosa was concerned that while Africa exported her raw materials to China, the continent bought finished products from the same raw materials such as minerals.
“This obviously limits ability African countries to extract full value of abundant natural resources and create work for its people,” admitted Ramaphosa.
“It is through platforms like FOCAC that we should work to balance the structure of trade between Africa and China.”