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China Ambassador Denies Africa Debt Trap Allegation

africa debt africans on china
Credit: South China Morning Post

China for some time now has been giving Africa loans and financial assistance. This however comes with its fair share of backlash. China has been accused of using their loans as an advantage to seize strategic assets of countries, but the Chinese consul general in Lagos, Chu Maoming, has debunked the allegations that China is setting debt traps for Nigeria and other African countries.

According to the guardian, China said, “it has always been above board in its cooperation with Africa, never interfering in the internal affairs of African countries or attaching any political strings.” China has described all allegations as false in an article to mark 20 years on the Forum on China Africa Cooperation (FOCAC).

Many countries attach more political strings to loans and set standards and thresholds that many African countries could hardly meet. Chu Maoming states, “China will continue to strengthen communication and coordination with African countries and resolve the debt issue through friendly consultation.”

‘Celebrating 20 years of FOCAC’, reads: “The 20 year marks the 20th anniversary of the founding of the Forum on China – Africa cooperation, FOCAC. China, along with all African countries is happy to celebrate this moment of great and unique significance.”

FOCAC has grown into an important and dynamic platform for China and Africa to carry out collective dialogues, and a platform for practical cooperation. FOCAC cooperation has benefited both China and Africa. China and Africa agreed to build a closer relationship at the 2018 FOCAC summit held in Beijing.

According to the guardian, Maoming said that Africa relations would always grow from strength to strength. China would like to take the 20th anniversary of FOCAC together with the African countries, as an opportunity to continue upholding the principle of “achieving shared growth through consultation and collaboration.” China has dedicated itself to improving FOCAC’s mechanism, China will connect two centenary goals to the Agenda 2063 of the African Union.

“Within the FOCAC framework, China will cancel the debt of relevant African countries in the form of interest-free government loans that are due to mature by the end of 2020.”

President Xi Jinping said at the Extraordinary China – Africa summit on solidarity against COVID-19, that China has also dedicated itself to working with the global community to give African countries hardest hit by coronavirus greater support, and this can mean further extending the period of debt suspension.

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