Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson's Remarks

Q: According to media reports, the Solomon Islands has decided to establish diplomatic relations with China. We noted that the Taiwan authorities said that China's financing and infrastructure assistance to Pacific Island countries is not often substantiated and may cause heavy debt burdens on the recipients. What's your comment on that?

A: China highly appreciates the Solomon Islands government's decision to recognize the one-China principle, sever the so-called "diplomatic relations" with Taiwan authorities and to establish ties with China. We support this important decision by the Solomon Islands as a sovereign and independent country. It is further proof that the one-China principle is the overriding trend of the times recognized by people all over the world.

China and Pacific Island countries are all developing nations. In conducting cooperation with these countries, China always upholds justice while pursuing shared interests. We have also provided much assistance to the best of our capabilities. Chinese assistance to these countries is an integral part of South-South cooperation. It has four distinct features. First, equality. We fully respect the will of the recipients, offer assistance to their needs, do not interfere in their internal affairs and never attach any political strings. Second, practicality. All projects are scientifically sound, taking into full consideration their actual effects and fiscal sustainability. Third, openness. Our assistance is not against any third party. We aim to make the pie of cooperation bigger instead of engaging in a zero-sum game. Fourth, sustainability. Following the idea of teaching a person to fish rather than simply giving him a fish, we attach importance to helping the recipients enhance their self-reliant sustainable development capabilities.

Guided by these principles, China has helped Pacific Island countries build more than 100 sets of projects such as international conference centers, roads, office buildings, schools and hospitals. We have provided scholarships to more than 5,000 students and trained more than 7,000 professionals. These measures have given a strong boost to these countries' socioeconomic development and people's welfare, gaining unanimous welcome and appreciation of local governments and peoples.

In conducting cooperation, from selection of projects to investment and financing projects, decisions are made prudently with mutual agreement after risk analysis and feasibility studies. China offers loans based on the will of recipient countries to areas where they are most needed. When our cooperative partners face debt difficulties, we always seek proper solutions through friendly consultations. So far, not a single country has fallen into a debt crisis because of cooperation with China.

I must point out that the remarks by Taiwan authorities are fictitious slandering. They are presuming other's behavior by their own pattern. The Pacific Island countries, with eyes wide open, are in the best position to say whether Chinese assistance is good or bad.

(Source: Foreign Ministry Spokesperson's Remarks on September 18, 2019)

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