20 Mar 2008

US says China's no-strings-attached aid programme in sharp constrast to others

11:38 am on 20 March 2008

The United States is to hold high-level talks with China to address concerns over Beijing's strategy of boosting ties with Pacific and other developing nations through a no-strings-attached aid programme.

China has recently made major diplomatic and economic inroads in the region by giving aid without imposing any conditions.

This strategy is in sharp contrast to that of the US, European Union and Japan as well as the World Bank and the IMF, which often use aid as a leverage to improve human rights and promote other reforms.

US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Thomas Christensen, says China's programmes could run counter to the efforts by the other donors to use targeted and sustainable aid to promote transparency and good governance.

He says the US wants China to harmonise its overseas investment and foreign assistance practices with those developed by international institutions like the IMF and World Bank.