Canada is continuing to give foreign aid to China to the tune of $7.59 million, according to figures confirmed by the Department of Foreign Affairs in a new report.
The Statistical Report on International Assistance recently tabled in Parliament revealed that the federal government continues to send money to China, despite being cited internationally for various human rights abuses.
Opposition MPs asked the Liberals to cease sending foreign aid to a “communist dictatorial government that abuses human rights” over four years ago.
At the time, Canada was giving China as much as $41 million before then-Opposition leader Andrew Scheer demanded a total suspension of the funds.
“I don’t believe Canadian taxpayers should be sending any money to China,” said Scheer at the time.
“We’re talking about a communist dictatorial government that abuses human rights, quashes freedoms, violates rights of its citizens and has a very aggressive foreign policy all throughout the region. China is headed in a direction that is not in alignment with Canadian values.”
The $7.59 million doesn’t include an additional $18.7 million in repayable loans via Export Development or the Finance Department’s USD $159.2 million purchase of shares in the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank of Beijing.
Conservative MPs have repeatedly called for the federal government to withdraw its investments with the bank.
“Forty per cent of the staff are Chinese nationals, many of whom are Chinese Communist Party members,” testified Bob Pickard at a Dec. 11 committee hearing. Pickard resigned as bank communications chief last year.
“I am alleging undue Chinese Communist Party influence in the everyday operations of the bank. People keep on asking me, ‘Where are the documents?’ Well if I had taken those documents, I’d either be in a Chinese jail right now or I would be under serious litigation.”
Ethiopia receives the most money in Canadian foreign aid of any country, receiving an annual amount of $206.6 million, followed by Afghanistan and Bangladesh.