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China Tells Obama To Put Up or Shut Up with Respect to Infrastructure Projects in Africa and Elsewhere, by Proposing Cooperation with the U.S.A.

Aug. 6, 2014 (EIRNS)—In a move that puts Obama on the spot, with his talk about infrastructure investment in Africa at his "African summit," Chinese officials have made a surprising proposal to the U.S.A., by inviting the U.S.A. to cooperate with China in financing and building infrastructure in Africa and elsewhere in the developing world (Pakistan, Nepal), according to a report in the City of London’s Financial Times yesterday. The paper has to admit that the proposal "has potentially sweeping implications for the future of international development aid."

The Chinese move also undercuts Obama’s effort, with his Asia Pivot, to portray China as a hostile enemy of a U.S.A. which has surrounded it militarily. This kind of collaboration would also serve to destroy the argument that China undertakes these kinds of projects throughout the world to benefit its own construction groups.

Obama, with his "all blather, no action" approach to development, such as Power Africa, has been put on the spot by China: He now has to put up or shut up on the question of development of power in Africa.

Chinese officials approached Washington on this subject, for the first time last year, proposing a partnership to build the proposed Inga 3 hydroelectric dam in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the third component of a bigger effort to harness the hydroelectric potential the Congo River, the world’s second- largest by volume of flow. Inga 3 is to be part of a bigger, Grand Inga project at the site, which could ultimately generate 40,000 megawatts, twice that of the Three Gorges Dam in China.

Power-short South Africa last year signed an agreement with D.R.C. to buy electricity from Inga, which has given renewed impetus to the project. There have been previous proposals to sell electricity from Inga to places as far away as Egypt, North Africa, and Europe.

Other consortia besides China are bidding on the project (from Spain and South Korea). A Congressional amendment passed last year prevents the U.S. representative at the World Bank from supporting the construction of large dams.