Chuck Grassley

United States Senator from Iowa

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Grassley Speaks to Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation

Feb 23, 2020
Prepared Remarks by U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa
Victims of Communism Event on World Bank lending to China
Washington, D.C.
Monday, February 24, 2020
 
China is now the world’s second largest economy after the United States, yet it continues to claim it needs World Bank loans.
 
Keep in mind that the World Bank was created to help economic development in the world’s poorest countries.
 
China ought to be embarrassed claiming it is a developing country.
 
Even more concerning is the information that keeps coming out about systematic human rights abuses in Xinjiang, including mass internment camps. 
 
The Chinese claim these centers are for vocational training. That’s nonsense.
 
Secret documents that have leaked out, including another one just a week ago, show that they are for repression.
 
In this context, it is pretty shameful that the World Bank continues to operate a “Technical and Vocational Education and Training Project” in Xinjiang.
 
Just having such an ongoing project with that name and the seal of approval of the World Bank lends legitimacy to China’s disingenuous claim to be concerned about vocational skills for local Muslims.
 
Moreover, one reporter has uncovered documents showing that these schools purchased barbed wire, tear gas and body armor using other funds, and of course funds are fungible.
 
It’s time to end World Bank funding for China.
 
And, I have a couple bills to do just that. 
 
One of my bills, S. 3018, would require the United States representation to the World Bank to work to defeat any project in a country that has reached the World Bank’s own “graduation threshold” and that is designed by the State Department as a “country of particular concern for religious freedom” or is on the watch list for such designation. 
 
This selective group of bad actors includes only China and Russia. 
 
My other bill, S.3017, would codify U.S. policy to push the World Bank to graduate China, making it no longer eligible for loans.
 
The United States is the largest contributor to the World Bank.  U.S. taxpayer dollars should not be furthering the aims of a major geopolitical foe that is repressing its people.
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