lørdag 25. september 2021

China’s Belt And Road Runs Aground In The Philippines – Analysis

In late July, the four-lane Estrella-Pantaleon Bridge opened to traffic over the Pasig River in Manila, offering a new route between the urban centers of Makati and Mandaluyong within the Philippines’ congested capital. Around 50,000 vehicles will pass over the bridge each day, which was built by the China Road and Bridge Corporation under the umbrella of both Beijing’s Belt and Road Initiative and Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte’s keynote ‘Build, Build, Build’ domestic infrastructure program.

Duterte—who attended an inauguration ceremony along with the Chinese ambassador—hailed the opening of the bridge, and after a virtual meeting with Xi Jinping on 27 August said he envisaged the completion of more key China-funded infrastructure projects, ranging from flood control to railways. Yet many projects envisaged at the start of Duterte’s six-year presidency—when he departed a state visit to Beijing with US $24bn in investment and loan deals—are unfulfilled as his term nears its end.