“The biggest contribution that the US can make to the debt issues outside the country is to cope with its debt problem and stop sabotaging other sovereign countries’ active efforts to solve their debt issues,” the Chinese embassy in Zambia said in a statement on Tuesday.
The United States recently went past its debt cap of $31.4 trillion, the maximum amount the country can borrow at any given time.
“Even if the US one day solves its debt problem, it is not qualified to make groundless accusations against or press other countries out of selfish interests,” the Chinese embassy added.
The United States recently took on the mission to strengthen its economic relationship with Africa in 2023. On this note, the country sent its Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen to Africa to encourage more cooperation between both parties.
Since her arrival, the US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has been vocal on numerous issues including Africa’s debt to China. She noted during her trip to Zambia on Monday, that it was crucial for Zambia’s debt to be restructured.
"I specifically raised the issue with Zambia (with Chinese officials) and asked for their cooperation in trying to reach a speedy resolution. And our talks were constructive," Yellen said.
"We will continue to press for all official bilateral and private-sector creditors to meaningfully participate in debt relief for Zambia, especially China," she added.
According to a news report by Aljazeera, “Chinese development banks have emerged as major lenders to poor countries around the world for natural resources, transport, and power projects although that lending has fallen sharply and steadily since 2016,
At present, 22 low-income African countries are either already in debt distress or at high risk of debt distress, according to the UK-based Chatham House. Chinese lenders account for 12% of Africa’s private and public external debt, which increased more than fivefold to $696bn from 2000 to 2020.”