Rich nations must step up support for developing bloc: Xi

April 22, 2015 16:11
Indonesian President Joko Widodo (R) greets his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping at the opening ceremony of the Asian African Conference in Jakarta on Wednesday. Photo: Reuters

Chinese President Xi Jinping called on wealthy nations to step up support for developing countries, and emphasized that the aid should come without any political strings.

"It is important to prod developed countries to earnestly deliver on their [overseas development aid] commitments," Xi said in a speech at the Asian-African Conference in Jakarta on Wednesday.

Rich nations must "step up support... with no political strings attached," Xi added, according to the Wall Street Journal. 

China, for its part, will offer trade benefits to poor nations having diplomatic ties with Beijing, he was quoted as saying.

By the end of this year, Beijing will extend zero-tariff treatment to 97 percent of tax items coming from all the least-developed countries that have diplomatic ties with China, Xi said.

In other comments, the Chinese leader called for advances in trade and investment liberalization, and wide-ranging cooperation among developed and developing countries across Asia and Africa.

Speaking of enhancing south-south ties specifically, he was quoted as saying that more-effective institutions and mechanisms are necessary.

China will continue efforts to create the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, a new multilateral lender that could finance several large-scale infrastructure projects across the region, Xi said.

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