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China Grants Loan, Debt Relief to Burma


China has agreed to grant a loan and debt relief package to Burma as part of a series of deals between the two neighbors.

The agreements were signed Thursday during a visit to Rangoon by China's assistant trade minister Chen Jian. Burma's deputy minister of economic development Colonel Thuyein Zaw and deputy minister of foreign affairs U Kyaw Thu took part in the talks.

The Associated Press quotes an unnamed official as saying the loan is valued at 30 million dollars and that the debt relief is worth another 30 million dollars. The two nations also agreed to expand economic cooperation in the timber and mining
sectors.

China's government says trade with Burma reached more than one billion dollars last year, mainly in exports of Burmese materials.

The United States and other Western nations have blocked trade with Burma because of allegations of human rights abuses by its military government.

Information for this report is provided by AP.

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