- The DA says it will question President Ramaphosa about the apparent R370 billion ‘gift’ which his administration had received from the Chinese government
- The DA’s Alf Lees said his party wanted a clear understanding of the terms and conditions attached to the loan
- Recent reports indicate that Ramaphosa secured the loan as part of a stimulus package offered by the Chinese government
The Democratic Alliance (DA) has once again raised its concerns about the growing relationship between President Cyril Ramaphosa’s administration and the Chinese government. The DA said it would ask Ramaphosa about the so-called R370 billion gift he had secured from China while on a recent state visit.
Recent reports indicate that Ramaphosa had somehow managed to negotiate a R370 billion loan with his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, which will form part of an economic stimulus package aimed at dragging the economy out of recession.
The DA’s shadow deputy finance minister Alf Lees said it would be unwise and extremely naive to think that China would just gift such a large amount of money without expecting anything in return.
Briefly.co.za gathered that Lees pointed out that China had a well-documented track record of offering developing nations cheap loans which had the potential to lead those nations down a dangerous path of being indebted to China.
SowetanLive.co.za reported that Lees said there were numerous examples of countries not being able to meet their debt obligations to China which led to the sale of assets and the loss of sovereignty.
The DA’s leader Mmusi Maimane recently noted that Zambia was forced to allow a Chinese-owned company to take control of the country’s state-owned power utility because it failed to meet its loan obligations with China.
Lees said the DA wanted to know what the specific terms and conditions were of each loan agreement which the South African government entered into with China. He also called for all Chinese loans and investment deals to be thoroughly regulated.
Lees confirmed that the DA would be asking Ramaphosa through Parliamentary channels to provide details about the R370 billion loan.
Ramaphosa committed his administration to secure at least $100 billion of direct foreign investment during its first five years. The president has been ruthless in his drive to secure investment deals for the country.
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