Mitchell: China is not taking over The Bahamas

PLP Senator Fred Mitchell.

Says despite report on Bahamas-China relations, US is the Bahamas’ greatest ally

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Chairman, Fred Mitchell, on Monday dismissed a “misleading” report that aired last week on international television, which suggested that the Chinese Government could be influencing the government of The Bahamas by way of investments to the country.

The report was aired last week on One American News, but yesterday, Mitchell said Bahamians should be careful of which news organizations they trust.

Mitchell told Eyewitness News Online during an interview at his constituency office in Fox Hill, that the report was misleading and the government accepted help when they could get it.

Mitchell noted that when former United States Vice President Joe Biden met with CARICOM Prime Ministers in Trinidad, and complaints were lodged that American investment and concessionary loans were not being granted, the prime ministers were told to look at other countries.

Mitchell said Biden told the leaders, “look, the United States has no money to give, China has money; and if they want to give you money, God Bless you, go right ahead.”

And despite the assertions of the international news report, Mitchell said that the United States is still the greatest ally to The Bahamas.

“I don’t think China has any…allusions about that.  The fact is they want to do things to help their country’s influence around the world. We have interest in getting capital, which we need to develop our country, so it’s a win-win situation,” the PLP leader explained.

The international report also suggested that the US’ delay in appointing an Ambassador to The Bahamas prohibited a lot of business opportunities for both countries, however Mitchell reassured that no businesses have been disrupted.

“All of the agreements that we have, the security contracts that we have are being carried out,” Mitchell assured. “American tourists come here in millions everywhere. They are serviced properly the embassy continues to function.”

Mitchell said that although there is an ongoing trade war between China and the United States, he doesn’t see a reason why The Bahamas cannot capitalize on the investments of both countries.

Eyewitness News Online made several attempts to reach Foreign Affairs Minister Darren Henfield and other Government officials for comment on this issue on Monday, but up to press time, our calls were not returned.