Alejano warns against China’s ‘acts of benevolence’
Magdalo Rep. Gary Alejano has warned the public against trusting China’s initiatives and diplomacy “at the expense” of the Philippines, saying Filipinos should look at China’s acts of benevolence “with a critical and historical lens.”
Amid President Rodrigo Duterte’s move to foster the country’s relationship with the economic giant, China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi visited the Philippines on Oct. 28 to discuss joint exploration in the West Philippine Sea.
Among the bilateral documents signed during the visit, the Department of Finance said, were the exchange of letters for the feasibility study of the Davao River Bridge (Bucana) project; 50-million renminbi grant for the supply of law enforcement-related materials/equipment to the Philippines; and the $1-million grant for Typhoon “Vinta” victims last year.
But Alejano said these deals were mere “bribes” in “exchange for pro-China policies.”
“Ang ginagawa ng China ay hindi lamang simpleng pagreregalo — ito ay panunuhol sa administrasyon kapalit ng maka-Tsinang mga polisiya sa bansa,” the senatorial aspirant said in a statement Tuesday.
(What China is doing is not a simple bestowing of gifts — this is a bribe to the administration in exchange for pro-China policies in the country.)
“We must look at China’s acts of benevolence with a critical and historical lens. For one, we know that the Philippines is a vital piece in its Belt and Road Initiative,” he added, noting Yi’s admission that the Philippines is “an important link in the Maritime Silk Road.”
The opposition lawmaker also raised alarm over China’s acts of benevolence which may lead to “debt trap diplomacy” in order to “put the Philippines under its power.”
“China is currently under fire for its debt trap diplomacy. Nagpapautang ito sa mga developing countries upang pondohan ang mga proyekto kapalit ng mataas ng interes (They are giving loans to developing countries to fund projects in exchange for high interest)…” Alejano explained.
He further said: “Hindi tayo dapat maging kampante sa mga regalong ibinibigay sa atin dahil ang mga tinatamasang regalo ngayon ay may hindi magandang kahihinatnan na siguradong ikadedehado ng Pilipinas.”
(We shouldn’t be complacent with the gifts they are giving us because these gifts will not have a good outcome and will put the Philippines at a disadvantage.) /je
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