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Rwandan President Paul Kagame is defending China's investments in
Africa, saying the Chinese are developing the continent while Western
companies spread pollution.
In an interview with the German
newspaper Handelsblatt published Monday, Mr. Kagame said China gives
African countries the investment they need, helping to build
infrastructure and roads.
He said in contrast, Western firms
have "polluted Africa to a large extent." He specifically mentioned
the dumping of toxic waste in Ivory Coast three years ago, and accused
European companies of dumping garbage in Somalia.
poured tens of billions of dollars into Africa over the past decade, as
it seeks raw materials and markets for its economy.
rights groups say Beijing has ignored human rights issues in dealing
with countries like Sudan, a major Chinese oil supplier.
Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court for alleged war crimes in Sudan's Darfur region.
the interview, the Rwandan president said he would prefer Western
countries to invest in Africa rather than handing out development aid.
Mr. Kagame said there is a need for aid, but said it should be used to enable trade and build up companies.
China, the world's second-largest consumer of oil, is apparently also seeking petroleum investments in the West African
nations of Ghana and Guinea to help fuel its fast-growing economy.
Street Journal quotes unnamed sources who say the China National Offshore
Oil Corporation is in talks with the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation
over a bid to rival a multi-billion dollar offer placed by Exxon.
Ghana will become West Africa's newest oil exporter when output begins at a field discovered in 2007.
Financial Times reports Guinea's government is in talks with the China
International Fund on oil and mineral deals that could be worth
billions of dollars.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.