Commentary / Coronavirus

China Fleeces the Poor, Time for Accountability

China is secretly profiting from coronavirus, in ways beyond selling protective equipment to infected nations, withholding pharmaceutical ingredients, and leveraging reopening for an edge over competitors.  Put aside coronavirus origins and the cover-up.  China is fleecing the world’s poorest countries, right before our eyes.

In effect, China is borrowing from Peter to fleece Paul, using cheap World Bank loans to re-lend the money and leverage high interest and political concessions from poor nations – to the tune of $200 billion. The offense is compounded by America’s role as a founder and largest shareholder of the World Bank. Here is how China’s usurious scheme works.

As described in a report by the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), China has cleverly concocted a means – at the height of this pandemic– for profiting on global desperation. Under the rubric of “massive Belt and Road Initiative infrastructure loans to poor countries,” they are “saving” countries with extortionate lending. No suspension of interest, they are tightening the belt – cinching China’s saddle around these nations.

“While the World Bank is disbursing emergency aid to its poorest borrowers, China—a major World Bank borrower, with $16 billion in outstanding loans—continues, effectively, to use cheap World Bank financing to fund its own higher-interest loans to other World Bank borrowers.”  Predictable? Yes.  Tolerable without mention? No.

Implications are immediate for countries pressured, more serious in the long-term. In effect, China is using lending practices that are illegal in most countries – often called “usury” – to bootstrap desperate borrowers to harsh terms, here political and economic. Doing so with Western dollars only makes more miserable the offense.

This is just the latest example of Communist China throwing the table, misusing multilateral institutions and economic power to broaden their political influence.

We know China intimidated the World Health Organization (WHO) after the Wuhan-origin virus appeared – apparently covering up the source, destroying samples, masking human-to-human transmission, mispresenting lethality, and causing incalculable harm to the world.

We know China improperly used membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO), consciously subverting terms to which all other nations adhered, seeking to game the system, pushing global tolerance, and thus advancing communist political interests.

We know China has resisted global rule of law norms, recently subverting INTERPOL – first installing a Chinese head in 2016, then when he fingered China’s own criminal misconduct, causing that leader – Meng Hong Wei – to disappear.  China sentenced him to 13.5 years of prison in January 2020.

Now, China pulls another jaw-dropping affront. China is using the crisis to saddle poor countries with high-interest debt, reapplying low interest World Bank loans.  Like a kiting scheme, China played needy debtor only to become usurious lender. Having not been called out, they now strong-arm countries like Pakistan, South Africa, and Ethiopia – each of which owes more to China than the World Bank.

CFR notes China’s lending is “shrouded in secrecy,” but hits almost 70 countries and approaches $200 billion – less than China owes the World Bank.  Enriching China, the opportunity cost is infringement on World Bank’s ability to lend at low rates to the same countries and increased risk of country-by-country insolvency.

“Chinese debt could cause emerging markets to implode” as nations struggle to get upright after economic damage from the pandemic. In short, this virus has “brought the world economy to a grinding halt,” foreshadowing negative growth. Chinese insistence on high interest payments from countries with declining currencies only deepens the crisis.

As CFR notes, many countries “had dangerously high debt levels even before the pandemic necessitated massive emergency spending,” such as South Africa, Kenya, and Nigeria. Their peril is higher now.  Since global interdependence is a reality, we are all hurt by China’s actions.

The World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) are doing what they can, but China needs to step back from these usurious practices, joining the G-20 commitment to forgive all interest due from poorer country through end of year.

Three take-aways:  Communist China is indifferent to settled international norms. These unethical actions corroborate allegations of unethical behavior surrounding coronavirus. Finally,  global unity in addressing China’s legal breaches – from coronavirus to misuse of multilateral institutions and indulging usury – has never been more important.

Communism is immoral, repressing individual liberties for the collective. The people of China must find their way out of that maze.  But China can still be held accountable for how they interact with the world. The time has come.


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Joanned
2 years ago

AH, would you honestly expect anything good from China???? THEY AS WELL AS DEMS ARE WORLD WIDE NASTY, SELF SERVING CREATURES!!!

annAnna Petrocelli
2 years ago

We all need to support Senator Cotton and others who are pursuing a legislation to bring our drugs making back to the states. I would never have bought an antibiotic had I known that it was manufactured in China. I see many writers responding to this article that they are aware of the tricks China has been playing on the US for the last 30 years, and unfortunately other Presidents, republicans and democrats turned their back which was not ignorance but affirmation that they knew what China was doing. I know that President Trump is working to change this dependency which we do not need. Americans are perfectly able to make anything they want to make in this, our own country.

BJLane
2 years ago

I think it’s about time that all the world’s countries should sue China and demand that China wipe the slate clean of any and all moneys owed to them. No loans outstanding. Then we need to get all our US businesses located in China back into the US, offering incentive packages too good to refuse. Then we need to increase our US made products and cut all ties with China once and for all and encourage other countries to do the same. Only trading with countries that appreciate each other and play by the rules. Then countries that can afford it should help those that can’t. I realize it can’t possibly that easy but it’s still a good idea.

aluminum head
2 years ago

For years I have been totally disgusted with seeing “made in china” on so much cheap crap in the name of profiteering. Walmart, Home Depot, Lowes, and on have led us to this. Then there are the generic drug companies. Disgusting. Let’s declare a war on the yellow DOGS. THAT is what they are.

Jeannie Huppert
2 years ago

2. I will never again buy anything made in China. 1. Every time I do not feel well I go to God & His Word: over 100 Scriptures where God Will Give us healing when we do what He Says. “Like” agree with God = say what God Says. ISAIAH 53:5; I PETER 2:24; PSALM 107:20 +; PSALM 103: ALL; PSALM 91:ALL; III JOHN 2.

josephine pooley
2 years ago

America needs to head up the effort to bring down Communist China!

Art A
2 years ago

To paraphrase a great man : Seems that a lot of folks trusted but never verified.The cage door was left open and no one seemed to care that what was in the cage escaped and they never tried to catch it.

David Nelson
2 years ago

Good read.
Wake up America.

Dr. N.W.
2 years ago

Communist China is using the Al Capone business model on a global scale.

Heidi
2 years ago

Why is the World Bank lending money to China? Oh, I answered my own question…WMS, WTO, OWO, need I go on?

Rosalee Cavanaugh
2 years ago

League of Nations never got off it’s feet because the USA said no way. Back then our citizens came from countries owned by the elite. Some how the USA failed to keep us sovereign and joined the United Nations. Now we are crying after so many years of abuse from these other countries. Down with the UN and WHO. Re-elect Pres. Trump. He hit NATO hard and had the guts to go after China and WHO.

CATHERINE HORNSEY
2 years ago

HOW MANY WORLD PANDEMICS ARE WE TO TAKE FROM CHINA BEFORE WE FIGHT BACK AND MAKE SURE THEY KNOW WE WILL NOT BE SILENT ANYMORE. 1? 2? 3? HOW MANY TIMES ARE WE GOING TO ALLOW THIS UNCHECKED? HOW LONG ARE WE GOING TO SELL OURSELVES OUT BY LETTING THE DEMOCRATS SPEND THERE WAY THROUGH MORE CHINA LOANS? UNTIL THEY OWN MOST OF OUR COUNTRY? MOST OF THEM ARE MILLIONAIRES, PERHAPS THEY SHOULD NOT GET PAID FOR SITTING AT HOME AND CAUSING MORE PROBLEMS, WE DO NOT GET PAID FOR NOT WORKING THEY SHOULD NOT EITHER! THEIR SALARIES AND THOSE OF THEIR STAFF COULD CERTAINLY SUPPORT MANY FAMILIES.

‘Nonymus
2 years ago

Chinese government has been fleecing their own people since taking power. Now think they’re bully enough to take on the world

T Taylor
2 years ago
Reply to  ‘Nonymus

If the Chinese people do not want to be fleeced then let them rise up as we did with England 200 years ago. Let China see America’s resolve, power intellect and might with full measure; with one objective to crush Communist China.

Brenda Blunt
2 years ago

It is time for China to be held accountable, responsible, and forced to pay. I am now looking for purchases made in USA only. Now is the time for ALL manufacturing to be returned to America and made by Americans. This will dampen the monies that China won’t be receiving anymore!!!

Concerned
2 years ago

“…many countries had dangerously high debt levels even before the pandemic…” Sounds like this would include the good ole US of A. Our dept may not with China, but nonetheless, our dept is totally out of kilter. Just think, when this hits the fan, the folks who caused it will most likely be out of office and those that voted for them will not even remember their part in causing the problem. Please remember, all will suffer far more than we are now with the pandemic.

Stephen Russell
2 years ago

China causes the virus, then ships out Poor Medical gear for payment, & still spies & robs our Tech & then is trying to steal our immunization formulas to counter virus
End this China Game
End the Yellow Peril.
Hardball for China on Trade.
See SupChina Weekly for Info inside China.

Alex Mullins
2 years ago

Communist China’s ruthless business tactics, manipulating currencies to there own advantage, hardly ever mentioned human-rights violations, substandard ethics in almost every area, have been known for years! Under the last five presidents the US economy has become so intertwined with Chinese manufacturers, it is going to take years to get out from under their thumb! If we don’t begin, now, to bring the manufacture of essential goods, including antibiotics and pharmaceuticals, back to the US, it will be our undoing! I think Trump is attempting to take serious steps to correct the wrongs of part administrations but he is meeting tremendous opposition, not just from the far left but from within Republican ranks! For all the great things President trump has accomplished in three short years, it seems like all respect from him, and his office, have been diminished greatly!

carol
2 years ago

It sounds like China has doesn’t think the rules of civility apply to them! Everything about what China is doing to every other country is nothing short of a Mafia, loansharking these poor countries trying to grab everything they can under their own control. Talk about one world government – it’s the Chinese Communists!!!! The world needs to punish China somehow or we will all be under their control! Somehow, because of all these things China has been up to over the years, makes me believe that this virus was just a precursor to something even worse and this all isn’t an accident!

Peter K
2 years ago

I love it. The time has come? The “time” came 10 years ago or longer. We, along with many other Western countries are scared stiff of China and allow them to continue their bully tactics without recourse. President Trump is the only politician on record to push bach and he is chastised for doing so. Cowards all and is especially true of our 535.

China can no more deal with was than we can, so I ask, “why don’t we call their bluff and threaten the WHO and World Bank with withdrawal and see what happens”? On second thought, I think I know why. Democrats will have a field day because absent any ideas or solutions all they do is pitch a fit every time OUR president defends the interests of the USA.

T Taylor
2 years ago
Reply to  Peter K

I am not afraid of China; let them continue to poke the bear and see what happens.

MICHAEL FAILLA
2 years ago

THEY FLEECE EVERYONE THAT THEY COME INTO CONTACT WITH AND/OR DO BUSINESS WITH. Are we ever going to get over our desire for cheap over quality? Imports versus domestic. Unless we understand that anything with and from china are going to come with many strings attached we will continue to be fleeced by the CCP. I have nothing against the chinese people as they are fleeced by their government as well and worse. What my complaint is is the CCP. Why do we continue to do business with these lying hoodlums on the world wide stage? Do you think this coronavirus was just an “accident”? think again. They let people leave wuhan but did not let anyone in. Why? To level the playing field and spread it around to slow the worlds economy. These people deal in centuries not days, thats the reason why, to get back at the world and the Us in particular because sanctions are hurting them as well they should. They have been fleecing the united states for decades to get an edge. They are ruthless and they lie like a rug!
Wise up people, buy American. I dont mind paying a bit more if i know my money is not going to a despotic nation.
this will probably be censored but its thee truth and lately media doesnt want to hear or say the truth. Politic correctness gone berserk.
In a time of universal deceit, speaking the truth is a revolutionary act! George Orwell

CATHERINE HORNSEY
2 years ago
Reply to  MICHAEL FAILLA

I WANTED TO PURCHASE A GAS GRILL AND HAD TO LOOK FOR ALMOST A YEAR TO FIND ONE MADE IN THE US. COST, $150. MOST IF NOT ALL OF THE REVIEWS ON THE GRILLS MADE IN CHINA RANGING IN PRICE FROM $100 – $2000 RUSTED OUT IN A COUPLES OF MONTHS, AND WERE UNUSABLE. I HAVE HAD MY GRILL FOR ABOUT 10 YEARS AND IT IS STILL WORKING GREAT, AND NOT RUSTED OUT – SO THERE. SPEND $2000 FOR A POS BIG NAME GRILL, I AM HAPPIER NOT HAVING TO REPLACE MINE AND PROUDLY OWNING A PRODUCT MADE IN THE USA.

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