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Fri, Nov

We went to China with innovative plans, not for aid - Bawumia

Business & Economy

Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia has explained that recent trip he led a high powered delegation to China was to present to the Chinese government thoughtful and innovative plans and not for aid.

Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia has explained that recent trip he led a high powered delegation to China was to present to the Chinese government thoughtful and innovative plans and not for aid.

China pledged some $15 billion dollars to fund Ghana’s massive economic transformation agenda, with the likelihood that a further $4billion would be committed for various development projects across the country.

Dr Bawumia was speaking at a conference organized by the Institute for Democratic Governance yesterday on the theme “Building Resilient Industries and Infrastructure for Economic Transformation in Africa: The Role of China,”

The Vice President stated that Ghana as a country was used to the old model of borrowing from China, hence the inability of many analysts to understand the new paradigm.

“They therefore keep referring erroneously to ‘the $15 billion Chinese loan.’  Let me state again that what we are proposing, and the agreements we have reached so far, are not new loans but rather joint venture proposals using less than 5% of our refined bauxite reserves. We are using this small fraction of our bauxite reserves not for the benefit of one individual or company but for the benefit of the entire nation,” he stated.

He described the trip as very successful, adding, “We came back with some leading Chinese companies and agencies of the Chinese government signaling their interest in our agenda and with agreements totaling $15 billion.”

Throwing more light on the trip and what transpired in China, the Vice President said the China National Building Materials and Equipment Import and Export Corporation signed a $2 billion facility with the private sector - led by the Association of Ghana Industries, to provide funding for the ‘One District One Factory’ programme.

He added that the China Development Bank agreed to unfreeze $2bn loan, and signaled their willingness to re-negotiate it into a concessionary facility with a grant element, an extended maturity and at a much lower interest rate.

“The China Exim bank is committed to providing about $1 billion to Exim Bank Ghana to support infrastructure and business development,” he said.

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