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People's Daily Online>>Opinion

Giving is an aid to prosperity

By Mei Xinyu (China Daily)

15:46, March 15, 2012

There shouldn't need to be a debate about whether China should provide economic aid and technical assistance to other countries. Yet voices have been raised in recent years decrying China's foreign aid as an unnecessary face-saving project that it cannot afford. These naysayers argue that China is still a developing country with a large poverty stricken population and can't afford to give aid on such a large scale, and that aid is not an effective way to develop diplomatic relations as some recipient countries have turned against China.

But such arguments are false. Aside from humanitarian reasons, foreign aid to other countries is necessary for the survival and development of China. This can clearly be seen if we take the historical background into account.

Foreign aid played an irreplaceable role in helping China to break the trade embargos imposed by both the Western and Eastern blocs soon after the People's Republic of China was founded. It enabled the country to make friends and deepened mutual understanding with many other developing countries and their people.

Before reform and opening-up, China's foreign aid to other developing countries accounted for a considerable part of its national revenue and fiscal income, and was even given priority over domestic demand. Despite its own low level of economic development and post-war disorder China began to provide economic aid and technical assistance to other countries in the 1950s. Since then, China has been providing aid to the best of its ability to more than 160 countries in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and Latin America through assistance gratis, concessional loans and interest-free loans.

Even the "cost-neglecting" aid provided before reform and opening-up was worthwhile, as it helped to lay the foundation for the economic and trade relations with developing countries China currently enjoys. So we should be far-sighted and look to the future, as the aid the country offers today may help China's development in the future.

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PD User at 2012-03-1899.255.22.*
The moral responsibility of a good parent is to take good care of his/her own children before others.The Chinese government is the "parent" of the Chinese people; it is morally responsible for the well-being of its people. After China is well-developed, then most Chinese wouldn"t mind giving aid to others.

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