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McClean pleads for help from China

Barbados is looking to China to help pull it out of its massive debt burden.

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Senator Maxine McClean this morning made a case for assistance from Beijing when she addressed the opening ceremony of the 6th round of Caribbean-China consultations at Hilton Barbados Resort.

McClean pointed to past examples of support, citing funding for “a number of economic sectors” including tourism, education and agriculture. She added that the Asian country’s development programme in the Caribbean went beyond “bricks and mortar” investments.

China’s economic growth rate slowed to a 25-year low in 2015. However, the world’s second largest economy still grew by 6.9 per cent last year.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs acknowledged this development and argued that Beijing still had the ability to help bail out the struggling economies of the region.

“Even within the context of this ‘new normal’ . . . we are confident that the Chinese economy remains resilient and stable,” she said.

McClean emphasized that the partnership between China and the Caribbean “continued to be strengthened in several concrete ways” and stressed that the gains derived from people-to-people contact had been immeasurable and had helped to strengthen the bonds of friendship.

In pressing her case to the Chinese delegation led by Vice Foreign Minister Wang Chao, McClean said the Caribbean was facing new challenges at a time when many of the territories had yet to recover from the “catastrophic” economic crisis dating back to 2008.

“Among these new challenges confronting our economies are the issues of de-risking and correspondent banking as well as the debt burden,” the minister stated.

She contended that these issues constituted an existential threat to regional economies and saw the talks as an opportunity to explore possibilities for cooperation.

She recommended climate change adaptation and mitigation as a priority issue for consideration, contending that both sides had been affected by climate change and were committed to mitigating its impact. (EJ)

3 Responses to McClean pleads for help from China

  1. Cherylann Bourne-Hayes
    Cherylann Bourne-Hayes March 23, 2016 at 5:01 am

    Herw we go. Look at China’s economy now.

  2. Sunshine Sunny Shine March 23, 2016 at 5:03 am

    Why are you asking for assistance when we are supposed to be doing quite well. We are doing so well that we have no problem wasting what we want. This confuses me, sorry.

  3. Tony Webster March 23, 2016 at 5:39 am

    Sell Bim to the Chinese, and put the money…in a Chinese correspondent bank, where they will give you 10%-15%, compounded daily. I never said they would give you your money back, in good ol’ US dollars. You cud however get it back in renmimbis. Effin dem give trubble, you cud always go and pray in one of dem Chinese Christian Churches, the first of which dem might hopefully allow…by 2066…in good time for our One Hundred Not Out Bashment.

    So ease-up on de grovelling and bowing low; teets-skinning; and start planning now. It’s gine be one heck of a party!


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