Mike Pompeo while in Jamaica on Wednesday, urged Regional Caribbean Governments to view Chinese investments, with suspicion and claiming that the Chinese Communist Party presented a grave threat to democratic values.
Pompeo recommended that Jamaica and its regional neighbours should “just make sure the transactions are on the up and up and that the investment is made for economic purposes”.
“We love the Chinese people. The US has enormous investments from China in our country and we have American companies that have invested in China, too,” Pompeo said.
In its response, the Chinese Embassy in Kingston yesterday expressed strong opposition to the “groundless accusation against China’s cooperation with Latin America and Caribbean countries, which Mr Michael Pompeo, the US secretary of state, has made”.
The embassy said that China has brokered cooperation pacts with Latin America and the Caribbean on the basis of respect, equality, and mutual benefit.
The Chinese characterised the Donald Trump administration as a trouble-seeking cowboy, picking fights with its trading partners.“For some time, it seems that some US politicians cannot go anywhere without attacking China, tarnishing China’s reputation, starting fires and fanning the flames and sowing discord,” the embassy’s statement said.
“They can go on talking the talk if they so wish, but we will continue walking the walk. The world will tell plainly who is stirring up trouble and who is trying to make a difference.”
The Chinese Embassy statement pointed out that China’s billion-dollar infrastructure and other investments had been welcomed by the region.
“Latin America and the Caribbean countries, as independent sovereign countries, have the right to determine their own foreign relations, including choosing their trade and investment partners. Others are in no position to impose interference or coercion out of ulterior motives,” the Chinese said.
Pompeo earlier reaffirmed America’s hostility to China, reiterating warnings issued last November by United States Ambassador Donald Tapia that the Asian nation was “a dragon with two heads.” commander for U.S. Southern Command, Navy Adm. Craig S. Fuller, had also urged the region to be wary of China’s campaign of “disinformation.”
The secretary of state, in his response to a question raised by former American Chamber of Commerce of Jamaica President Allison Peart. at a policy discussion on US-Caribbean relations, said “here is what America is doing, We are making sure that when Chinese companies come to invest in America, that they are doing what President Trump said, which is that they are gonna be fair, and that it’s going to be reciprocal,” Pompeo said.
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