Is Chinese bank ICBC’s coal exit a power move for a greener belt and road?

ICBC chief economist Zhou Yueqiu says the bank will make a road map and timeline for the gradual withdrawal of coal financing. Observers say Beijing may be exerting pressure on financiers.

Who is the Bigger Official Lender in Africa: China or the World Bank?

In an oft-cited 2019 working paper titled “China’s Overseas Lending,” we read that China has become the world’s “largest official creditor, easily surpassing the IMF or the World Bank…” Is this true in Africa (All references to Africa in this article refer to all of Africa, including North Africa, rather than only sub-Saharan Africa)? It depends on how you define “official”. Available evidence shows that while credits from all Chinese financiers, including commercial banks and corporations, to African governments and state-owned enterprises, exceed those of the World Bank, the World Bank is still the largest official creditor in Africa.

China is walking a tightrope in Myanmar

Instability and anti-Chinese sentiment are endangering Beijing’s plans in the country, but rivalry with the West and its own domestic problems may prevent it from engaging the democracy movement, which remains wary of China.

Do Belt and Road projects provide local benefits?

The assumption that China’s overseas infrastructure projects only run on Chinese labour is in need of a reality check, by Dirk van der Kley    In a virtual meeting with a group of African students in late April, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken asked a question, implicitly, about China: “Are they bringing their own workers with them, or are they giving jobs to people in the country where they’re making investments?”

China reveals co-operation with EU on green investment standards

China’s central bank has revealed that it is co-operating with the European Union to converge green investment taxonomies across the two markets, aiming to implement a jointly recognised classification system for the environmental credentials for businesses by the end of this year.   Yi Gang, the governor of the People’s Bank of China, said at the China Development Forum in March that the primary goal of the central bank over the next five years was to implement and standardise a green finance system in the country in co-ordination with global partners. 

Belt and Road Initiative: end of the line for China’s Afristar rail firm in Kenya?

Kenya is terminating its contract with Chinese-owned Africa Star Railway Operation Company (Afristar) for the operation of the Standard Gauge Railway, a move expected to save the country more than US$120 million in annual fees.

Hong Kong tech stock boom may be prelude for China outbound investment wave

It’s time for mainland China money to make a bigger splash in the world, starting with Hong Kong, after restraints put on Chinese foreign investment in the last half-decade.

Podcast: The Plunge in China’s Overseas Lending

Getting a loan from one of China’s two largest policy banks is significantly more difficult than it was just a couple of years ago. According to data from Boston University’s Global Development Policy Center, lending by the China Development Bank and the China Exim Bank plunged 94% from $75 billion in 2016 to just $4 billion in 2019.

Analysis: Sovereign wealth, public pension giants caught up in U.S.-China tech fight

Some of the world’s biggest sovereign wealth funds and public pension funds are getting caught in the escalating tensions over technology between the United States and China, a Reuters analysis of their filings data and public disclosures show.

Debt at China’s state-owned firms in spotlight as credit tightening raises default pressure

China’s big state-owned firms are likely to face growing pressure to make payments on their debt this year as Beijing moves to tighten credit growth, government researchers and analysts said.

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