Corruption to Blame for China’s Belt and Road Initiative Failures?!

( – China’s Belt and Road Initiative may have flopped considering its expected goals, according to the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies.

The Belt and Road Initiative just saw its 10th year anniversary since it launched in China. This infrastructure program was meant to create connections between various emerging markets and to connect Asia with other countries in Europe.

In 2013 President Xi Jinping launched the BRI, which was essentially intended to create a similar economic and cultural impact that the Silk Road had in the region. However, the report shared that the impact of this program hasn’t lived up to the hopes that Beijing had for it.

“Tightening the Belt or End of the Road? China’s BRI at 10.” is a report that broke down the effect of the BRI in China. The report argues that the BRI program has caused a lot of chaos socially, economically, and politically. There is also heavy corruption that has caused a lot of backlash for the program.

The report looked into case studies from the Dominican Republic, Zambia, and Ecuador and found that there was massive corruption with the funding that China was receiving for the BRI. Essentially, the report shows that the money put into the BRI program is not seen in the reflection of the BRI and it said that the “BRI failed to live up to its intended goals.”

Josh Birenbaum, who was a co-author of the report, said, “Unfortunately, productive assets were built with one hand while vanity projects were built with the other, poor cost projections and risk planning contributed to unneeded or inferior infrastructure, and opaque loans at market rates ramped up debt distress for countries that could least afford it.”

Some people also say that China is not open with how they spend the funding they get for such programs, which has diminished the trust that they’re using it for their intended purposes. Many other countries were left with what the report refers to as “high-profile, low-quality projects that impressed domestic audiences in the short term, but which were often unneeded, poorly thought out, or defectively constructed.”

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