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China Projects Power Through 'Climate Aid' (U.S. News and World Report)
October 9, 2018
By Alan Neuhauser
From the article:
China, which for years has asserted its global influence through investments in foreign infrastructure projects like coal-fired power plants and highways, is increasingly offering assistance to other countries for what it portrays as "green" projects designed to ease impact on the environment.
From high-speed rail projects in Latin America to solar farms and hydro-dams in Africa, this so-called "climate aid" is seen as cause for concern – both about the environmental friendliness of the projects Beijing underwrites and about its underlying geopolitical intentions.
An analysis in March by the nonpartisan Center for Global Development concluded that eight countries were exposed to unusually high levels of debt to China: Djibouti, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, the Maldives, Mongolia, Montenegro, Pakistan, and Tajikistan. Three months earlier, then-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson declared that China's lending practices encouraged "dependency using opaque contracts, predatory loan practices, and corrupt deals that mire nations in debt and undercut their sovereignty, denying them their long-term, self-sustaining growth."