Wang Yi Refutes So-Called “Debt Trap” in China-Africa Cooperation (07.01.2022)

Wang Yi stressed, China-Africa cooperation is South-South cooperation and mutual support and assistance between developing countries.

BEIJING, China, January 7, 2022 – On January 6, 2022 local time, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Kenyan Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs Raychelle Awuor Omamo jointly met the press in Mombasa. Wang Yi refuted the allegation that China’s cooperation with Africa has created a “debt trap”.

Wang Yi stressed, China-Africa cooperation is South-South cooperation and mutual support and assistance between developing countries. In conducting cooperation with Africa, China has never attached any political strings or imposed anything on others. All China-Kenya cooperation projects have been scientifically planned and appraised in detail, bringing benefits to the Kenyan people and boosting Kenya’s national development and revitalization. Eighty percent of Kenya’s foreign debt is owed by multilateral financial institutions, and its debt to China is mainly concessional loans.

Wang Yi emphasized, the so-called “debt trap” in Africa is not a fact, but a malicious hype-up by some people. It is an “utterance trap” created by those forces that do not want to see Africa speed up development. If there is any “trap” in Africa, it is the “poverty trap” and the “underdevelopment trap”, which Africa should get rid of as soon as possible. China is ready to work with all friendly countries to help African countries speed up post-pandemic recovery, eliminate poverty and underdevelopment, catch up with the times as soon as possible, achieve common development and create a better future.

Chinese Embassy in Uganda: Remarks by the Spokesperson of the Chinese Embassy in Uganda on Some Media Reports Alleging that “Uganda Surrenders Airport for China Cash” (28.11.2021)

Opinion: Financial distress and defaulting on loans causes the state to loose Entebbe International Airport

China is most likely to take over Uganda’s Entebbe International Airport for default on debt repayment. More of Uganda’s national assets are at stake of seizure because of the unrealistic and endless borrowing which has mountained public debt to UGX65 trillion” (Kingdom Media Uganda, 25.11.2021).

The Deficit Financing can only take you so far. The bloated and crony capitalism can only keep you going so far. There been years upon years with loans for all sort of development projects and infrastructure upgrades in general. The loans have gone to buildings, roads and the only international airport in the Republic.

The National Resistance Movement and President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni have over the years promised they have a threshold and control of the amount of debt. However, in 2021 after a downturn and lack of generating revenue. The state is defaulting on it’s loans. The state has taken out loans it cannot carry. Loans are not only the loan, but the services for it too. The loans are with interests and with additional fees, which was accepted on taking the loans. These loans are now maturing and the grace period of not paying interests etc.

The Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MoFPED) have promised they can service it and has it under control. They have said it would be used properly and well-spent funds. Nevertheless, the loans are clearly piling up and the state doesn’t have the revenue to pay them. They have recycled to many bad-loans and now they comes to haunt the Republic.

The state is paying for ghosts, huge patronage and a local government structure that is dilapidated from the get-go. Since, the state has such excess of expenditure, but they have to keep that to breathe life into the regime. This is why the state has to spend and use funds like a drunk sailors in port. Just awaiting to be robbed by a bystander or waste a salary at a gentleman’s club. However, this is a serious government and not a drunk lonely man who has been at sea for months on end.

It is tragic, but there been warnings. The Sri Lankan debt to China and what happened there should have been a “red flag”. What happened in Zambia as well should be another story of which the Ugandan government should have reacted too. However, that is clearly asking to much, as kickbacks, graft and grand corruption is part of the diet at the Entebbe/Nakasero State House. They are just eating and doesn’t care about the ramifications of it. Since, the cattle in Rwakitura farm is better taken care off, than how the budgets are financed. This is the sad reality of the Republic in 2021.

The amount of loans and debt will cause more distress. Why? Well, there is no future or ability to clear the debt without any proper revenue. The state needs to find new measures to get fiscal responsible. However, the state cannot just tax things and start to tax people for their every transaction. Because, with doing that… they are taking away money, which will generate more revenue and even more possibility to create new businesses. Yes, the state gets more taxes, but they are also creating a wormhole where there is no option to generate any real income. Since, if you have any transactions, the percentages of money is siphoned by the state and instead of getting invested to make new markets.

Therefore, the state is forced to change the way it operates. However, by doing so… the NRM and Museveni will have to drop cronies. That is something it cannot afford, because they are to eat and not to make the Republic better. This state cannot sustain itself …. and it’s own fault that it defaults on loans. Nevertheless, the citizens and the taxpayers are the first to be hit by this. Not the ones who has issued or taken out the loans over the years. They are the ones that has to fix it or for generations pay the Chinese for ordinary services. Because, the current regime wants SUVs and envelopes to cover for funerals or pay for medical tourism. Peace.

Opinion: 7 years down the line and the China Exim Bank loan to upgrade Entebbe Airport can become a liability

The State Minister of Finance, David Bahati assured the legislators that the implementation of the project will be monitored to ensure the funds are properly utilised” (The Observer – ‘Parliament endorses Shs 680bn Entebbe Airport expansion loan’ 30.10.2015).

It is now evident that the Government of Uganda and the National Resistance Movement (NRM) might struggle with a loan it took out in March 2015 from the China EximBank to fund upgrades of the Entebbe International Airport. We are now in October 2021. There was forewarnings about taking expensive and extensive loans to build and development infrastructure projects. The ones who was steadfast and worried about the rate of loans the state took out was silenced. The state had a plan and initiated with thresholds of loans the state could borrow.

Alas, the state is starting to struggle to cope with all of these loans. It is not shocking as the NRM and the state have been busy with deficit financing it’s budgets to balance it. They are operating with a higher expenses than it has domestic revenue. So to go from red to black the state borrows vast sums from various entities, both locally and internationally. These are taken out with interests and with that… the debt burden is ballooned and at one point… the creditor will either ask for the collateral or make an agreement to cover the funds to cover the defaulted debt. This is what that could happen to Entebbe International Airport…..

Here is how the story went…

How the loan was made:

On October 8, 2014, Uganda’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) entered into a contract for the up grading and expansion of Entebbe International Airport (Phase 1). To access funding for the project, the Government of Uganda (GoU), represented by the finance ministry, signed a concessional agreement with EXIM Bank of China dated March 31, 2015 for the principal amount not exceeding Renminbi 1.26 billion (about $200m) and interest to be charged at a rate of 2% per annum” (Africa Tembelea – ‘AG Muwanga raises queries on Entebbe Airport Expansion’ 12.01.2019).

How CAA looked at the agreement in 2019:

Current overall progress for the upgrade and expansion of Entebbe International Airport is at 52 per cent as opposed to the planned progress of 55 per cent. This is commendable progress. At one point in time, there was a delay in release of money from the Exim Bank of China to the contractor (CCCC), which led to a slight delay that has since been resolved. There was a difference of opinion between Exim Bank and the Government of Uganda on the loan agreement clauses. This necessitated the Government of Uganda and Exim bank of China to renegotiate the terms. This was done and the matter resolved amicably. The contractor has since increased resources committed to the project including manpower and equipment. The rainy season also affected works” ( Dorothy Nakaweesi – ‘Renegotiating loan terms slows Entebbe Airport expansion’ 03.06.2019, Daily Monitor).

Xinhua reports:

Under the Belt and Road Initiative, construction works started in May 2016 after Uganda acquired a 200-million-U.S. dollar loan from the Export-Import Bank of China (China EximBank). The project is scheduled to be implemented in two phases, said China Communications Construction Company (CCCC), which was contracted to design, construct and manage the project. The first phase, with three-quarters finished, involves construction of a new passenger terminal, a new cargo complex, and upgrade of two runways and their associated taxiways, rehabilitation and overlay of three aprons. “For the new cargo building, it is about 10,000 square-meters and when it is finished, it can handle 100,000 tons of cargo per year; for the new passenger terminal building, it is about 20,000 square-meters (and) can handle 3 million passengers per year,” Li Qinpu, CCCC project manager told Xinhua in a recent interview” (Ronald Ssekandi – ‘Feature: China revitalizes Uganda’s aging airport to carry more int’l traffic’ 15.10.2021, Xinhua).

Brian Luwanga tweeted today:

EXIM Bank of China can take over Entebbe Airport in case Uganda fails to pay back a loan of 740 billion shillings ,this has been unearthed by COSASE while meeting Finance Minister Matia Kasaija. The loan was advanced to Uganda for upgrade of Entebbe Airport(Brian Luwanga, 28.10.2021).

It is now a shot that the state promised was safe and would be able to liable for. The state said it would be able to repay the Chine EximBank and service the debt. However, it now seems likely the state is failing to pay back the loans. This means the state is defaulting in it and depending on the agreement. The creditor will have power to cover the debt from the debtor. In this instance, the state has to give collateral or any other sort of value, which will practically cover the lost debt and get returns on the loans issued.

This here is a sad story, but they could have done things differently. Even MPs and some said the state should use other sources to raise the funds for the upgrades of Entebbe International Airport. There was one MP who said the state should borrow this from the NSSF to cover it. Alas, that wasn’t the case and now we are here.

We shouldn’t be shocked at this current rate and with the trillions of shillings of debt. The debt isn’t only the amount you get directly from the lender, but you will also pay additional fees and interests. Meaning the loan isn’t just the fixed funds, which the debtor is receiving, but also the costs of servicing it too. That is what the state has do to when it takes these sort of loans and financial instruments.

The general public should worry about this. Because the state has taken out so many loans and these could it easily default on. The state needs domestic revenue, but is running on huge burden of running costs. While it doesn’t have a growing economy or financial structure to cover the deficits. That’s why the state has taken out loans to cover these expenses and this is why they are defaulting on it.

This was inevitable and the state has to restructure itself. Also, ensure it only has expenses that it can cover and just continue to add debt until the sky. Now the rainy days are coming and the loans taken out in recent years will come to haunt the state. This will hurt the state even more and the spiral of depreciative loans will eat up the budgets, which it is already doing. The rate of paying down on it will be destructive, unless there is a sudden miraculous change of financial fortunes. Alas, await more tragedies like these, as the Entebbe International Airport is the top of the ice-berg. Peace.

Opinion: The Chinese claims the loans to developing countries is not to trap them – I beg to differ!

Today, there was an interesting thing coming through my feed that captured my eye. It was a headline from the Philippines News Agency. It was claiming that the Chinese was not making developing countries in debt slaves or putting them into debt traps by taking up huge loans for extensive spending on infrastructure projects. Now in March 2019, the Chinese are claiming that they are just giving viable loans and not to much.

However, I will beg to differ, but before I do so. Let see what the Chines spokesperson said. Which I have to say is not true.

Guo Weimin, spokesperson of the second session of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), said extending Chinese loans to developing countries aims to facilitate infrastructure projects that are expected to bring development and boost the economic growth of these nations. “Chinese investments only account for a very small share to their total debt. And our projects are mostly infrastructure, which can support the long-term development of those countries,” Guo said. “Yet some say, this is a great debt trap. But this doesn’t make sense,” he added” (Kris Chrismundo – ‘No debt trap for developing countries: CN political advisory body’ 02.03.2019, link: http://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1063438).

Let’s me just take the first victim of the debt trap made by the Chinese is in Sri Lanka where the Chinese has taken over and lease the Hambantota Port for 99 years in 2018. While in Zambia, the Chinese has taken over ZESCO, the state electricity company, majority ownership of the Zambian National Broadcasting Company, and if the Republic fails more on their debt. The Zambian state might loose the ownership of Kenneth Kaunda International Airport as well.

In Kenya, the government have loaned massive funds for the Standard Gauge Railway Part 1 and 2. Now, they are on the limb and its speculated that the Port of Mombasa can be taken as collateral for the possible failing loans.

There are warning signs of the total loans given to Tonga, Fiji, Samoa, Papua New Guinea, Maldives, Ghana, Liberia Philippines and so on. They are clearly strategic about it. There should also be worrying about the loans given to the Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda, Tanzania and so on. The Chinese has loaned for massive projects and not small-pocketed money. Which the Chinese would like to have back paid.

This is just small examples of what that is coming. Because the states are taking up gigantic loans, which they can possibly default with. That is why the Chinese has been smart enough to sign for collateral, which usually is important parts of infrastructure or mobility. So, that the Chinese can trade and also control vital parts of the economy. They are not joking around and seemingly taken a soft approach to neo-colonize the developing countries. Because they can and have the ability to do so.

We can wonder if there will be more like this. There are also the battle happening in Djibouti over the Doraleh Port, who went from DP World Port Company to a Chinese Company. That was because of the debt that the Republic of Djibouti had. Just like the port in Sri Lanka went to them as well. Both very strategic and important ports in their regions. Therefore, the Chinese has gotten good infrastructure and possible revenue streams in these Republic for their defaulting loans.

There will be more to come out of this. That is why I don’t believe the Chinese, saying the developing countries can manage the amount of loans, as the Chinese are planning to takeover something to get repaid for their services. Peace.

Opinion: The Goblin’s family finally slapped by the state!

Since the November 2017 Coup in Harare, the Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) has been friendly to the former President Robert Mugabe and his extended family. The ZANU-PF have let the family eat plenty have a giant package of money and also a big pension for the 37 year long presidency. Today, it is released a document telling, that the state is finally taking action against the family and their possession.

On the 16th March 2018 in the High Court of Harare, where Judge President Justice Chiweshe ordered eviction of Russel Goreraza, Grace Mugabe and Kennedy Fero. These three has lost in court, where they are now evicted from the properties of 409 Harare Drive, Pamona, Harare; 18 Cambridge Drive, Avondale, Harare; 75 King George, Avondale, Harare. All of these properties will go back to companies that owns the properties, since the Mugabe family has been squatting here.

This here is proof that the time has changed, this would never has happen in 2017, but it is in 2018. It might a proof that the President Emmerson Mnangagwa wants to show strength too, because of the blessings of National Patriotic Front and the support of the G-40 Members to the new party, before the up-coming elections. Therefore, the ruling regime want to show the former first family, that they are not untouchable anymore.

This here is vital if people been evicted or alleged crimes by the former first family, the can now petition the courts and get refunded for their hurt, even get their land and properties back. Who knows what more businesses, farms and other frauds the Mugabe family has done and could also lose if people petitioned it. When the state has been run by the family and cronies, they can now get it back and also see justice in these matters.

It is at least hope and proof that the Mugabe family is not untouchable, they can actually lose a court case and the petitioners has a chance. Last year, the courts would have dismissed or not given it merit even. Because Mugabe family good whatever they wanted and got away with it. Now the table has turned.

Mugabe family has been evicted from three properties, that is historic and a proof that time has changed. It is also a sign that the ZANU-PF plans to answer if the former President continues to cry havoc in the press. They will answer, because they will not show mercy, if the Mugabe creates drama. Peace.

Zimbabwe: Statement on Former President Mugabe (16.03.2018)

Opinion: Mugabe shouldn’t cry foul, he should enjoy his retirement!

Mugabe bitter at Mnangagwa’s “betrayal”. “On my side, I always had Mnangagwa. I brought (Mnangagwa) into govt. I never thought he whom I had nurtured, and whose life I had saved in prison when he was threatened with hanging, that one day he’d be the man that turned against me”. Mugabe: “I don’t hate Emmerson. I brought him into Government. But he must be proper. He is illegal.” He says he’s ready to speak to ED to correct things. “We don’t deserve it. Please we don’t deserve it.”. Mugabe offers to negotiate with Mnangagwa. “But I must be invited, properly invited for that discussion”” (Zim Media Review, 15.03.2018).

It is insulting to the people of the Republic of Zimbabwe. Where Robert Mugabe was President for 37 years. Where he run everything and left nothing behind. He touched everything and everyone. His decisions was made in his interests. He made it violent, he rigged himself into power and he used all the tricks in the book to stay in power. Suddenly in November 2017, the Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) who ousted him with help of the army in coup. That is right, but he didn’t have a birthday to be on the throne until death.

It is rare when someone like him speaks of illegal, that former comrade Mugabe is blaming Mnangagwa, the man who rig himself again and again. The man who tarnished, nearly killed the opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai, the man who has detained activists, where up to 5,000 MDC activists are still not accounted for by the ZANU-PF government. Even months after the fall of Mugabe, there are enough human rights violations, enough skeletons in the closet to keep him in prison forever if anyone collected evidence and affidavits.

Mugabe should be careful with his mouth, since he is living lavish, he is still having his blue-roof and the family is still getting a hefty pension. That is more than President Canaan Banana. Therefore, sometimes, silence is the best medicine. If Mugabe was wise, he would haven’t said a god damn thing. Clearly, the former professor, has lost his marbles. Since he talks and says things that doesn’t make sense.

It is right that President Mnangagwa haven’t been directly elected, but was helped by the army. Which he has offered positions in the cabinet. Mugabe shouldn’t expect a discussion or invitation to negotiate anything, unless it is to get out of jail free card. I know Zimbabwe isn’t Monopoly, but that card shouldn’t have. His kind which has eaten on the state, used the police and army to oppress people for generations. Kept opposition in prison, if not they have exiled. Clearly, this man after his ousting, should pray to God for the Mercy, ZANU-PF and Mnangagwa showed him. They could have chopped his head-off, but instead they should dignity and mercy on the old man.

Mugabe, do yourself favor, retire with grace, really retire with Grace. Its time do much ado nothing. It’s time for him to be silent, not talk, he has done more than enough. Mugabe has hurt enough people and oppressed enough of them. His tricks is used, his time is spent and he is lucky he isn’t lingering in jail until his final day on earth.

So please, former comrade and liberator, the former dictator and almighty, please shut-up and just be retired. Not complain, because your lucky enough already, your blessed enough already and has still all your things. Other ones in your shoes was taken around town, flogged and then killed. You got off easy, maybe should consider that for a little moment. Peace.

Zimbabwe Election Commission: “Re: Notification of Existence of National Patriotic Front (NPF)” (13.03.2018)

Zimbabwe: Press Statement by the Zanu PF Secretary for Information and Publicity Cde. J.K. Moyo on the Ocassion of the Extraordinary Session of the Politiburo (14.03.2018)

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