China makes $15b direct investment in Africa – Statement

Category: Investment, Lead 1

Statistics show that about 18,000 Chinese companies have invested overseas, mainly in the developing world.

By the end of 2011, China has executed more than 2,200 projects for less-developed countries to the benefit of local people.

A statement signed by Mr. Shao Haijun, Bureau Chief of Xinhua News Agency Accra Bureau, copied to the Ghana News Agency (GNA), said with direct investment in Africa totaling nearly $15 billion, less-developed countries have been exempted from the re-payment of 4.8 billion dollars debts.

It said, a decade ago, in 2000, the Forum on China and Africa Cooperation was established and since then, there has been rapid development in the economic relations between China and Africa.

The statement said in June, this year, Ghana signed a $3 billion Chinese Master Facility Agreement with the China Development Bank.

“Looking back, one can see that burgeoning development of China has brought huge vigour and vitality to world peace and development over the past decade, as a number of facts and statistics prove it,” it said.

The statement said African countries were eager to reduce poverty, create jobs and increase economic growth.

It said Mr Hu Jintao, President of China, has pledged to offer 20 billion US dollars as loans to African countries to support infrastructure, industries and small-scale businesses to boost the continent’s development agenda.

“China is already playing an increasingly helpful role in Africa’s developmental process,” the statement said.

It said Ghana’s former President John Agyekum Kufuor lauded the growing bilateral trade between Africa and China, as well as the support African countries had been receiving from their Asian partner.

Although China has accumulated wealth during its rapid economic development, it was crucial to narrow the widening earnings gap through income distribution reform, the statement said.

It said narrowing the income gap and balancing the efficiency and equity in development would be a major task for the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC).

According to the statement, Mr. Haijun said China’s State Council decided to establish an overall income distribution plan by the end of the year and added that the Council had high hopes for the upcoming 18th national congress of the CPC.

It said the plan would focus on improving earnings for low-income groups and capping high wages by breaking up monopolies through opening up state sectors to private investors.

The statement said the Council would also regulate the economic sectors by levying higher tax rates on state-owned enterprises.

It said China has been working on income distribution reform since 2004, but people’s expectations have not been met.

The statement said: “State-run monopolized sectors have become a major target of public complaints”.

It said the income gap was becoming ever wider along the road of development, as everyone in society could feel it.

The statement said unfair income distribution has been seen by many economists as a major obstacle in deepening economic reforms and transformation of mode of growth of some countries.

It said the widening income gap has resulted in increasing public complaints and sometimes social conflicts.

According to the statement, “China has successfully solved food and clothing problems of its people but there is still a long way to go in building a well-off society in an all-round way.  Making more people share the fruits of economic development will be a crucial step toward that goal.”

The ruling CPC with about 2,270 Deputies held its 18th National Congress on November 8, 2012.

The Congress is crucial as it concerns leadership change and the direction of reforms and major national policies in the next decade.

Mr. Haijun said China has gone through the necessary reforms and emerged as the world’s second largest economy.

He said China, arguably the most vibrant economy in the world today, provides very useful lessons for Africa and, indeed, most third world countries, especially with regard to its political, social and economic reforms.

Source: GNA

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