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CHINA DENOUNCES CRITICISM, PLEDGE CONTINUED FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR AFRICA

By Morris Dogga in Beijing

China has pledge to continue providing financial assistance to Africa despite criticism that Beijing is setting up a “Debt Trap” for most of the continent’s countries through its lending.

Speaking at the FOCAC follow-up forum in Beijing on Tuesday, State Councilor Wang Yi denounced “outside forces” who he said are seeking to degrade the Sino-Africa cooperation by accusing China of setting a ‘debt trap’ through its lending and investment in the African Continent.

“No matter how the international situation evolves, China will continue to work for the development of the African continent,” Wang said.

“There were some outside forces that have tried to vilify and undermined the Sino-Africa relations by cooking up the so-called neocolonialism and debt traps which are totally baseless.”

During the FOCAC summit held last year, China pledges 60 Billion US dollars financial supports to Africa inform of government assistance as well as investments and financing by the Chinese financial institutions and companies.

Chinese companies also are encouraged to make at least $10 billion of investment in Africa through 2021

Critics say the move was “debt Trap diplomacy”. In the five years from 2012 to 2017, Chinese lending to sub Saharan African countries jumped to more than $10 billion a year, up from less than $1 billion in 2001, according to credit analysts

The US warned that African Countries running up debt they won’t pay back, including to China, should not expect to be bailed out by western-sponsored debt relief, a US diplomat told reporters in South Africa on Sunday.

But Foreign Minister Wang said China was not ready to get involved in the geopolitics adding that his Country’s investments in Africa were meant for economic development and building a community for shared future.

“We cannot allow the world into the old law of the jungle. There should be no influence in Africa,” he warned adding that foreign countries should come to Africa with an open mind.

Trade between Africa and China has already exceeded 200 billion US Dollars, making Africa one of the biggest trading partners. Over 880 products will be carried out in the next year, according the ministry of commerce.

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, told the Ministerial Level Forum that China’s support for infrastructure which is a base production of tradable goods will contribute to the right direction.

“Let China and Africa move forward. We are moving to the right direction,” Museveni said.

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