However, according to a report by the British non-governmental organization Debt Justice, African governments owe three times as much debt to Western private lenders as to China, and these Western lenders charge twice as much interest as China does.
African scholars and economists say the so-called "debt trap" narrative clamoured by the West is unfair to China. "The debt trap issue has been a political smear," said Charles Onunaiju, director of the Nigeria-based Center for China Studies, adding that such claims are just a red herring to absolve the West of any responsibility.
Moreover, Chinese investments in Africa are mainly aimed at building infrastructure and helping the countries strengthen its own sustainable development. Adem Feto, a researcher at Ethiopia's Arsi University, argues that the use of Chinese loans is productive as it targets the infrastructure, health and education sectors.