We pay £16m to promote African trade with China
THE Department for International Development has allocated nearly £16.5 million of foreign aid to help encourage Chinese investments in Africa – while sticking by rules that stop the promotion of British business.
The initiative, called Partnership For Investment And Growth In Africa (PIGA), has been given a ringing endorsement by Chinese president Xi Jinping, who said: ‘This will provide more opportunities for China-UK co-operation.’
PIGA is part of Invest Africa, which will receive annual instalments of up to £5 million between now and 2021. But while the Chinese can cash in, DFID’s own guidelines clearly state it is not able to use staff time or financial resources to promote UK commercial interests.
Last night a DFID spokesman said: ‘Invest Africa supports foreign investment into sectors such as manufacturing, which means the UK is helping to create much-needed jobs in Africa.
‘No country can defeat poverty and leave aid dependency behind without sustainable economic growth, jobs, trade and investment.’