- by Eileen
- The Guardian
- Issue #1992
Why is it that despite many developed countries, such as the US, UK, and almost all members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), having arrangements where they support development projects in African countries through loans, only development assistance from China to African countries is branded as a “debt trap”? Perhaps it’s about time we question those promoting the debt trap and debt diplomacy idea and call it what it is – Western propaganda whenever reporting about China-funded projects in Uganda and Africa.
Perhaps African countries should be asking what the motives of “debt trap” propaganda really means. Is it because its proponents love African countries so much that they are concerned that African countries will fall into these so-called traps? Why is it that infrastructure funding from Western countries, coming with conditions, is called development assistance while China’s condition-free assistance is branded a “debt trap”?
A critical analysis of the modus operandi of colonialists and imperialists would show conclusively that they have never intended for Africa to be liberated. That is why, for the West, it is a disaster when China offers mutually beneficial assistance to African countries because such assistance will eventually make African countries more self-reliant: something that is directly against the hegemonic aspirations of some western countries. This largely explains why Western commentators have coined frightening phrases, such as “debt trap” and “debt diplomacy” to scare African countries into abandoning their relations with Beijing.