Follow CGSP on Social Media

Listen to the CGSP Podcast

Chinese Scholar Makes the Case That It’s Bond Debt, Not Bilateral Loans That Trap Developing Countries

A new research paper by prominent Tsinghua University development finance scholar Tang Xiaoyang provides the most detailed argument to date in defense of China’s bilateral lending to Global South countries and how mostly Western-initiated bonds are the real culprit in burdening poor states with unmanageable debts.

The 68-page paper was published in both English and Chinese and marks one of the strongest refutations of the “debt trap” narrative that has dogged Chinese lending to developing countries since Indian pundit Brahama Chellaney first published the accusation in 2017.

  • Get a daily email packed with the latest China-Africa news and analysis.
  • Read exclusive insights on the key trends shaping China-Africa relations.
  • Full access to the News Feed that provides daily updates on Chinese engagement in Africa and throughout the Global South.

China, Africa and the Global South... find out what’s happening.

Subscribe today for unlimited access.

What is The China-Africa Project?


The CAP is passionately independent, non-partisan and does not advocate for any country, company or culture.


A carefully curated selection of the day’s most important China-Africa stories. Updated 24 hours a day by human editors. No bots, no algorithms.


Diverse, often unconventional insights from scholars, analysts, journalist and a variety of stakeholders in the China-Africa discourse.


A unique professional network of China-Africa scholars, analysts, journalists and other practioners from around the world.