Published: Mon, September 03, 2018
Finance | By Jaime Brady

China-Africa summit: Xi denies money being spent on vanity projects

China-Africa summit: Xi denies money being spent on vanity projects

President Xi spoke before the start of a two-day China-Africa summit.

At the last forum, held in Johannesburg three years ago, Xi had also pledged $60 billion in investment.

Xi made no mention of the political and debt concerns that overshadow some BRI projects.

All but six of the over 40 African leaders and heads of state and government attended the 3rd Summit chaired by the Communist leader Xi Jinping to definitely tighten China's grip over Africa and to deepen Africa's dependency on China. Text the word "NEWS" to 22840. "Resources for our cooperation are not to be spent on any vanity projects but in places where they count the most", he said.

On green development, Xi said China will undertake 50 aid projects on green development, and ecological and environmental protection, with a focus on climate change, ocean, desertification prevention and control, and wildlife protection.

Xi said the financing would be in the form of government help as well as investment and funding by institutions and companies.

Through the scheme, China has lent billions of dollars to countries in Asia and Africa for roads, railways, ports and other major construction projects.

Xi Jinping has announced eight new initiatives, an additional $60 billion for Africa and a clean up of the debt maturing by this year of its LDCs, highly indebted, landlocked and Small Islands States.

But critics warn that African nations have been going into unsustainable levels of debt with the Asian giant.

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The world's second leading economic powerhouse China is hosting the FOCAC Summit where President Xi is expected to announce new steps in China-Africa ties. Last year, China-Africa trade volume was $170 billion. China defends continued lending to Africa on the grounds that the continent still needs debt-funded infrastructure development.

He will be accompanied to Beijing by his wife, Aisha, who is scheduled to participate in a Spouses' Programme on China-Africa at the Great Hall of the People, under the theme, "Joining Hands for a Future of AIDS".

ZIMBABWE is working closely with China to support local exporting companies as part of measures to boost its foreign currency earnings, which will in turn stabilise the economy, Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Dr Sibusiso Busi Moyo has said.

Africa has long embraced Chinese investment, helping make Beijing the continent's largest trading partner for the past decade.

Xi said the plan, for which Beijing has pledged $126 billion, would help provide more resources and facilities for Africa and would expand shared markets.

In the recent five years, China-Africa relations have gained practical results, bringing tangible benefits to both peoples, including unprecedentedly frequent high-level exchanges and strengthened political guidance.

African leaders and the chairman of the African Union (AU) will be in attendance, and the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General will be the esteemed guest, joined by 27 worldwide and African groups as observers.

African leaders, "should use the summit to ask tough questions".

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