Sierra Leone, in a first of a kind move in Africa, has stopped plans to build a controversial, $318 million airport outside the capital of Freetown with a Chinese company and funded by Chinese loans.
The mega project, which was due to be completed in 2022, had been commissioned by the previous president Ernest Bai Koroma in March this year.
Only last month, African Presidents rushed to Beijing to attend FOCAC. An additional deal in huge loans was announced.
Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected back in Beijing between November 5th to 10th.
Sierra Leone cancellation comes amid waning enthusiasm in both Pakistan and Malaysia for Chinese loans backing large-scale infrastructure projects in recent months.
But Sierra Leone's decision is the first time an African government has canceled an already announced, major China-backed deal.
"After serious consideration and diligence, it is the Government's view that (it) is uneconomical to proceed with the construction of the new airport when the existing one is grossly under utilized," said a letter from the country's Minister of Transport and Aviation to the project's director, published in local media
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