Show 'love' to China to help low-income countries find debt solutions: Saudi minister

Al-Jadaan’s comments came in response to criticism over China’s investments in Africa and other money-strapped nations, a move usually labeled debt-trapping, economic dependence and prioritization of Beijing’s interest over local needs.

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Saudi Arabia’s Finance Minister Mohammed al-Jadaan on Thursday said that countries must show “love” to China instead of “antagonizing” them to collectively find solutions for low-income countries struggling with debt.

“Instead of just antagonizing them [China] and damaging the low-income countries that need our help, we should just show China and other creditors as much love as we can for the low-income countries who need to find solutions to their debt,” al-Jadaan said in a panel discussion at the IMF conference in Morocco.

The Saudi finance minister’s comments came in response to widespread criticism over China’s investments in Africa and other money-strapped nations, a move usually labeled debt-trapping, economic dependence and prioritization of Beijing’s interest over local needs.

Saudi finance minister Mohammed al-Jadaan at an IMF panel discussion at the annual conference in Morocco on October 12, 2023.
Saudi finance minister Mohammed al-Jadaan at an IMF panel discussion at the annual conference in Morocco on October 12, 2023.

He added that world leaders and executives of financial institutions needed to work with China to create a “common framework” for finding solutions to the rising debt crisis among low-income countries.

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“It is time we set the record straight: China stepped up when people shied away from Africa and built infrastructure in Africa,” al-Jadaan said. “Instead of poking China, we need to appreciate that they did what they needed to do for their own interest, but that also helped other nations.”

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