The government of China says the claims made by the US government through Rex Tillerson, secretary of state, concerning its loan facilities to Africa are ridiculous.
Tillerson, who is on his diplomatic visit to Africa, had described the rate at which China offered loans as terrible. He warned that African countries could lose their sovereignty if they are not careful.
Reacting to his comments, Zhao Linxiang, economic counsellor at the Chinese embassy in Abuja, said his country has contributed to the development of Nigeria.
Citing the Lagos-Kano rail and Mambilla dam project, Linxiang said no Western country has provided loans to Africa without critical conditions.
“African people should know the role the Chinese loans play in your economy; that is the most important thing,” he said.
“Except the Chinese government, which other government provides loans to African countries without critical conditions. No Western country.
“How can they say they suspect Chinese loans; it is ridiculous. Without funds how can you develop a country?”
He said China turned her economy around when she accepted loans from other countries.
The government official said China is planning a trade expo for Nigeria to help expand export opportunities and share business opportunities with China and other participating countries.
“It is believed that this upcoming China International Import Expo will breathe new life into the bilateral trade cooperation and create the biggest opportunity to enhance the bilateral trade position to a new level.
“It is believed that this expo will give the Nigerian people and businessmen a great platform to show what Nigeria looks like to China and the rest of the world.”
He said more than 100 countries are expected to participate in the expo.