Vila Times

US offers better development finance terms in the Pacific than China: official

US offers better development finance terms in the Pacific than China: official
US offers better development finance terms in the Pacific than China: official
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The head of the US government’s development finance arm says his country offers better terms in the Asia-Pacific than China.

The Overseas Private Investment Corporation’s (OPIC) chief executive Ray Washburne says its US$4 billion fund in the region is to help economic development, stability and prosperity, RNZI reports.

In Papua New Guinea it provided more than US$10 million to help telecommunications company Digicel expand services into remote parts of the country.

Mr Washburne said the US assistance does not force countries to use an imported labour force.

He said it ensures environmental standards are met and that loan repayments are within a country’s capacity.

Mr Washburne said strategic assets should not be put at risk and cites Sri Lanka handing over a strategic port Hambantota to China last year on a 99-year lease.

“So we think the United States working with our counterparts in Japan and Australia truly are going to be able to drive bolder and bigger projects that create economic growth and local jobs that enhance regional connectivity.”

Including the Pacific in the Asia region, Ray Washburne said “what’s good for Asia is good for the world”.

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