June 24, 2020 / 4:09 PM / 17 days ago

Pompeo says China's lending policy creates unsustainable debt burden in Africa

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo gives a news conference about dealings with China and Iran, and on the fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, in Washington, U.S., June 24, 2020. Mangel Ngan/Pool via REUTERS

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Wednesday blasted China’s policy on lending to African countries in a statement on last week’s China-Africa summit, saying it creates an unsustainable debt burden and hides corruption with its secretiveness.

Noting that China is “by far the largest bilateral creditor to African government,” Pompeo said that “most U.S. foreign assistance, by contrast, comes in the form of grants rather than loans, in order to promote transparent, private sector-led economic growth that benefits all parties. “

Reporting by Lisa Lambert; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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