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Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference Refutes ‘Debt-Trap’ Diplomacy Claims

“It is totally ungrounded calling the Belt and Road Initiative a debt trap” Mr Guo said, adding that Chinese investments in developing countries made up only a small share of their total debt.
04 Mar 2019 18:41
Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference Refutes ‘Debt-Trap’ Diplomacy Claims
Spokesperson of the second session of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) Guo Weimin, speaks at a press conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on March 2, 2019. Photo: Xinhua

 

The People’s Republic of China’s top political advisory body has dismissed claims of so-called Chinese “debt trap” diplomacy.

Spokesperson of the second session of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) Guo Weimin said China’s foreign initiatives has won the recognition and support of the international community.

During a press conference with local and international media on Saturday, which was also attended by the Fiji Sun, Mr Guo responded to a query about concerns of the so-called debt trap and regional hegemony by China through the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

He said BRI brought development and hope to participants and the debt problems of some developing countries were created by complicated historical reasons.

“It does not make sense that people say that it creates a debt trap,” Mr Guo said.

“CPPCC attaches great importance to the construction of the Belt and Road. More than 100 countries and international organisations participated in the initiative by the end of 2018. The Belt and Road Initiative has been welcomed by the international community.”

He stressed that BRI has nothing to do with regional hegemonism, rather it is winning more friends with its progress.

“It is totally ungrounded calling the Belt and Road Initiative a debt trap” Mr Guo said, adding that Chinese investments in developing countries made up only a small share of their total debt.

Fiji Sun senior journalist Fonua Talei after the press conference at the Great Hall of the  People in Beijing, China on March 2, 2019

Fiji Sun senior journalist Fonua Talei after the press conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China on March 2, 2019

China’s investments overseas mainly focus on infrastructure, Mr Guo said, which is good for the long-term development of participating countries.

While promoting BRI, he highlighted the importance of maintaining peace and co-operation and the principle of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits.

Fiji signed a Memorandum of Understanding with China last year on November 12th boosting co-operation within the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative.

Fiji’s Ambassador to China, Manasa Tagicakibau, joined fellow diplomats at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing for the opening ceremony of the CPPCC.

The two-day conference ends today and will be followed by the National People’s Congress (NPC) tomorrow where Bills will be deliberated, national and international issues will be discussed and the national budget will be announced.

Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang is also expected to present the government’s work report for the year.

Edited by Epineri Vula

Feedback: fonua.talei@fijisun.com.fj

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