The Centre for China Studies, (CCS) has lent its voice to explain that China cannot take over or breach Nigeria’s sovereignty, as it has been perceived by some Nigerians.
CCS gave the explanation in a press statement signed by its Director, Charles Onunaiju and made available to LEADERSHIP, where he stressed that the underlying rationale behind China’s loan to Nigeria is to deepen diplomatic cooperation between both countries, and ensure the development of Nigeria.
The statement read in parts, “These principles are at the core of China’s contemporary diplomacy and therefore, no state including Nigeria and others can entertain worry or concern about the loss of its sovereignty in relation to partnership with China.
“Therefore, no treaty, agreement and any other instrument of cooperation with China can remotely lead to loss of sovereignty. The controversy issuing from China’s concessional loans to Nigeria in which hysteria and paranoia is been orchestrated about potential loss of Nigeria’s sovereignty or purported China’s takeover of Nigeria is absolutely false and unfounded. Any unbiased study and scientific interrogation of the People’s Republic of China and its foreign relations bears out, the fact that Beijing has strictly adhered to its foundational five principles of peaceful co-existence in her foreign relations.
“The eight points of China’s principle on economic assistance further underlined that China provides economic aid in the form of interest-free or low-interest loans and extends the time limit for repayment when necessary so as to the lighten the burden of the recipient countries as far as possible.”
“In the specific instance of China-Africa cooperation, Beijing’s widely circulated “China’s Africa policy, issued in 2006, among other things reiterated the China’s adherence to five principles of peaceful co-existence, respects African countries independent choice of the road to development and supports African countries endeavours for economic development and nation-building, carries out cooperation in various forms in economic and social development, and promotes common prosperity of China and Africa.”
“As an independent research Centre, we would counsel that it is much better to hold China to its declared principles and commitment than to speculate on the fictitious and non-existing “China’s debt trap, Colonialism and imperialism.
“China’s peaceful development also benefited from concessional loans, especially the historical three tranches of 330 billion Japanese Yen for 1978-1983, 470 billion yen for 1984-1989 and 500 billion yen for 1990-1995, granted by Japan, which added to the pool of fund that China used to implement its ambitious ten year development plan that featured 120 key infrastructure projects in 1978. The projects were 30 electric power stations, 6 trunk rail roads, 10 steel plants, 8 coal mines, 5 habours, 9 non-ferrous metal complexes, and then, 10 new oil and gas fields. The repayment of these loans was mostly in oil and coal.”