Pedro Molina

Is China the New World Bank?

In a world weary of the limited effectiveness of most development programs in curtailing endemic poverty, China’s growing role in countries around the world provides ample opportunity to reconstruct the landscape of economic aid and financing. But reaching that goal requires a plan, and China must play its part in formulating it.

SINGAPORE – The Chinese are everywhere. Or, more accurately, Chinese money is everywhere, thanks particularly to the China Development Bank (CDB) and the China Export-Import Bank. As the two institutions responsible for all Chinese overseas financing, they are making waves around the world.

According to The Financial Times, Chinese lending in 2008-2010 surpassed World Bank assistance by approximately $10 billion. By the end of 2010, the CDB’s reach extended to more than 90 countries, whose total indebtedness reached $141.3 billion.

So, is China reshaping the landscape of development assistance? In a nutshell, yes.

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