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Wednesday, 4 July 2018

How China’s financing and political savvy helps it lock down key pieces of infrastructure

How China uses financing and political savvy to lock down key pieces of infrastructure: Beijing’s canny read on local politics and alleged willingness to throw around bags of cash (literally and metaphorically) allowed it to secure use of a key port in Sri Lanka, giving it “control of territory just a few hundred miles off the shore of a rival, India, and a strategic foothold along a critical commercial and military waterway.” The New York Times has a deeply reported piece looking at how it all came together, positioning it as a cautionary tale on Beijing’s Road and Belt financing initiative. The piece has proven controversial in Sri Lanka, where MPs have tried to intimidate two Sri Lankan journalists who had worked on it. Former Cairo bureau chief Michael Slackman, now the Times’ foreign editor, issued a press release yesterday rebuking the lawmakers for their attack on the press. Read the exhaustive investigation here or catch Slackman’s press release here on the tweeter.

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