China’s Xi says African investments come with ‘no strings’

China’s Xi says African investments come with ‘no strings’

China will extend a total of 60 billion US dollars of financing to Africa, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced Monday.

President Xi Jinping made the pledge Monday during the opening ceremony of the triennial Forum on China Africa Cooperation in Beijing.

China's growing clout in Africa is also drawing criticism that more African countries are getting caught in a Chinese debt trap.

China has doubled its financial aid and investment pledges to Africa and promised to waive the debt of the continent's least-developed nations as Beijing seeks to extend its economic and political reach in the region.

It would be spent on eight initiatives over the next three years, including building more infrastructure and giving scholarships to young Africans, he said.

The huge endeavour brings much-needed infrastructure improvements to developing countries, while giving China destinations to unload its industrial overcapacity and facilities to stock up on raw materials.

NAIJ.com gathered that the summit which is themed Towards an even Stronger China-Africa Community with a shared Future is scheduled to hold between September 3 and 4.

China's massive and expanding "Belt and Road" trade infrastructure project is running into speed bumps as some countries begin to grumble about being buried under Chinese debt.

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Liu said China-Africa people-to-people exchanges should pay special attention to the needs of young Africans since they account for a large percentage of the population and face challenges such as unemployment.

"Much of what is imported from China is finished goods", he said.

"The Summit is also expected to adopt the Beijing Declaration and the Action Plan for the development of China-Africa cooperation and fashion out new opportunities to grow Nigeria-China comprehensive strategic partnership from 2019 to 2021".

The commitment comes on top of another US$60 billion announced at the summit three years ago.

"China does not interfere in Africa's internal affairs and does not impose its own will on Africa", Xi told his African counterparts and business leaders at a forum before the FOCAC.

According to data from John Hopkins University's China Africa Research Initiative, China has already loaned around $125 billion to the continent between 2000 and 2016. Most of the plans have been implemented. "What we value is the sharing of development experience and the support we can offer to Africa's national rejuvenation and prosperity", Xi said.

On Monday, a number of African leaders will gather in Beijing for a summit focused on economic ties which will include talks on the "Belt and Road" programme. Chinese funds are not for "vanity projects" in Africa but are to build infrastructure that can remove development bottlenecks, he said.

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