Breath of fresh air to see a major US news outlet like The Atlantic saying this
True, unusual to see a more balanced view in a mainstream western news outlet.
However the debt trap rhetoric is and always has been myopic anyways. From what I have seen (when working in eastern Africa), it actually works differently. Intentionally or not, what China does in these countries is to boost rent seeking local elites in business arrangements that are permanently linked to China, and this in turn prevents local entrepreneurial elites from creating independent businesses during a crucial phase in economic development.
Yeah, China has a lot of projects in developing countries which include zero debt, but instead they take direct ownership on major pieces of infrastructure for long periods of time (50 - 100 years) and then also own all of the profits. On top of that, they insist that they bring and use their own workforce only. In my opinion it’s worse than debt, since you end up with a foreign government owning infrastructure in your country - highways, energy grids.
this is being done with vaccine consignment as well
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