xi's moments
Home | Editorials

'Debt trap' claim nothing but a myth: China Daily editorial

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-11-06 21:56

US President Joe Biden pledged to increase US investment in the Americas and the Caribbean at the first Americas Partnership for Economic Prosperity Leaders' Summit in Washington on Friday. Yet in his opening remarks, he unnecessarily alluded to China which drove home the point that the event is another front to counter China's influence in the Western hemisphere rather than to help regional countries meet their urgent infrastructure needs.

"We want to make sure that our closest neighbors know they have a real choice between debt trap diplomacy and high quality, transparent approaches to infrastructure and to development," he told the leaders of 11 other inaugural Americas' Partnership countries — Barbados, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, Panama, Peru and Uruguay — that attended the meeting.

The United States has become so desperate to contain China that it is turning even a meeting on economic issues into an event to attack China. True, China has developed extensive cooperative relations with Latin American and Caribbean countries — it has free trade agreements with Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador and Peru, and 21 Latin American countries have joined the Belt and Road Initiative. But that doesn't mean China is targeting the US. On the contrary, its goal is to help improve infrastructure connectivity in the region so the countries there can boost their development and China can benefit from their development.

Poor infrastructure and shortage of funds are the major obstacles to economic growth in the region. As such, the development loans China has offered to, and its rising investments in, Latin American and Caribbean countries have enabled them to make up for the fund shortage and focus on key construction projects such as ports, airports, highways and railways to the benefit of the local economy and people.

Yet such mutually beneficial relations have irked the US, which has always seen the region as its backyard and, of late, China as its major strategic competitor. That's why it has been trying to demonize China's cooperation with the countries in the region by using tropes such as the "debt trap" narrative.

China has not caused a debt crisis in any country. Instead, it is the US, the biggest source of investment in the region, which has been linked with many debt crises in Latin America and the Caribbean over the past several decades.

Washington should abandon its Cold War mentality and stop slinging mud at China if it really seeks to promote economic prosperity in the Americas and the Caribbean. But when has Washington been interested in helping other countries achieve economic prosperity?

Global Edition
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349