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Beijing mulls Belt and Road lending as indebtedness rises

CHINA's President Xi Jinping has re-emphasised commitment to his signature foreign policy project, the Belt and Road Initiative, but opinions are split over the sustainability of such investment amid a backdrop of rising debt at home, reported Hong Kong's South China Morning Post

29 November 2020 - 19:00

CHINA's President Xi Jinping has re-emphasised commitment to his signature foreign policy project, the Belt and Road Initiative, but opinions are split over the sustainability of such investment amid a backdrop of rising debt at home, reported Hong Kong's South China Morning Post.

'China will further harmonise policies, rules and standards with [Belt and Road Initiative] partners, and deepen effective cooperation with them on infrastructure, industry, trade, science and technological innovation, public health and people-to-people exchanges,' President Xi told the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum.



However, as growth in the world's second largest economy has slowed and as the domestic debt burden has risen due to the coronavirus pandemic, questions have been raised whether China will have to slow its international engagements in the next few years, in particular its financing of Belt and Road projects, said the report.



And while China will by no means abandon funding projects, it may cut back on lending, both due to domestic needs and moves to make sure future lending is sustainable, analysts said.


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