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Thread: CPEC and Developments

  1. #271
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    1. Which choke points
    2. How are they going to dominate away from their shores
    3. US isn't going away. China's energy & trade continue at the grace of the USN
    What did I say about 15-20 years?
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  2. #272
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    What did I say about 15-20 years?
    What about it. Tell us more

    15-20 years doesn't make for an argument

    Can claim anything is possible in 15-20 years isn't it.
    Last edited by Double Edge; 27 Jun 18, at 07:50.

  3. #273
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skywatcher View Post
    With the influence that comes from controlling a major infrastructure piece for a decade or so, China would bake a lot of value in the socio-economic relationships in a place like that.
    If the borrower is able to pay back, but this whole premise of debt trap diplomacy means they cannot and will be entrapped and endure a loss of sovereignty which will then be exploited for "strategic purposes", in perpetuity it would seem. If China holds say 20% of a nations debt then it can be considered as state capture where the govt of that country is more beholden to the creditor than its own people. China controls the country in effect. Russia already does this with some states on its periphery. The curious thing with China is it does this or is perceived to be doing this with states that are far away from China

    The Japanese have been doing development loans like this for decades and successfully converted it into business relationships for their products the world over

    But China is different apparently..
    Last edited by Double Edge; 27 Jun 18, at 08:38.

  4. #274
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    What about it. Tell us more

    15-20 years doesn't make for an argument

    Can claim anything is possible in 15-20 years isn't it.
    I said it from the beginning and you were an active participant. This thread is more than a year old, so it seems that we all forgot what we talked about. Start from here.
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  5. #275
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    I'm not convinced of the military threat that China supposedly poses to the region by having these various ports

  6. #276
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    I'm not convinced of the military threat that China supposedly poses to the region by having these various ports
    I know you're not convinced. Some of us here are. gfaust is also convinced as far as I can remember. In another 15-20 years PLAN will be bigger and better. They still won't be able to fight the USN, but they will dominate their near shores, like for example the IOR. And I don't see the urgency or the intention of understanding an immediate threat by the GoI. Finally, we can agree to disagree.
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  7. #277
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    The IOR is not their near shores. The seas south & east are their near shores. People extrapolate their belligerent behaviour there to the rest of the maritime region. That easy ? really ?

    GOI is setting up listening stations in different islands in the IOR and collaborating with the French. So the Chinese can track our movements and we can track theirs. This is as far as it goes for the moment

    Two videos by cybersurg puncture quite nicely the dominant narrative of what the Chinese can ultimately do. They have a geography problem which holds them back

    What immediate threat ?

    There is no agree to disagree you either make the case or not. And since the beginning of this thread i've been hearing about this strategic ie military threat but i don't see much to convince to date. Put it this way if i was in your shoes i wouldn't be able to hold the position

    What can give this China narrative currency is the US for some reason withdraws from the region. The question is whether that withdrawal creates a power vacuum or not. If it does then China gets the upper hand otherwise there is little difference to the status quo

    So if you hold the view that China will dominate the region you also imply the US quits and leaves the region with a power vacuum

    UK & France developed nukes because after WW2, the americans voted in isolationist govts and both UK & France felt vulnerable to the soviets. The same will repeat in the region, they will go nuclear if necessary
    Last edited by Double Edge; 27 Jun 18, at 16:42.

  8. #278
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    The IOR is not their near shores. The seas south & east are their near shores. People extrapolate their belligerent behaviour there to the rest of the maritime region. That easy ? really ?
    Yes it is, or will be. Jiwani/Gwadar, Hambantota. Possibly Chittagong, Maldives in future. Not to rattle other countries, first they build maritime infrastructure, than comes the military part. Just because you haven't heard or seen things, doesn't mean you can deny or reject what people read & think. You want proof? Nehru got proof in 1962. As far as I am concerned, anything the Chinese do raise suspicions. And I am not alone. The GoI too thinks that way. Oh wait, the US administration too thinks that way. And many other countries do.

    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    GOI is setting up listening stations in different islands in the IOR and collaborating with the French. So the Chinese can track our movements and we can track theirs. This is as far as it goes for the moment
    So? What is the GoI actually doing when it comes to strengthening military force assets? Submit like a meek weasel to tiny countries like Maldives who're under Chinese influence?

    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    Two videos by cybersurg puncture quite nicely the dominant narrative of what the Chinese can ultimately do. They have a geography problem which holds them back
    Nothing is being punctured. Feel good videos is your comfort zone. And the Chinese would solve the geography problem in another decade.

    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    What immediate threat ?
    You know the threat. You refuse to see it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    There is no agree to disagree you either make the case or not. And since the beginning of this thread i've been hearing about this strategic ie military threat but i don't see much to convince to date. Put it this way if i was in your shoes i wouldn't be able to hold the position
    What are the islands that the Chinese built in SCS for? Those islands now have anti-ship cruise missiles, as well as SAM systems. What are the Chinese trying to defend in those artificial islands? I am not going to convince you any further, and I am holding onto my position as well. You are entitled to your thinking and your position on this matter. If you don't like my position, guess what, there are other threads where we can engage.

    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    What can give this China narrative currency is the US for some reason withdraws from the region. The question is whether that withdrawal creates a power vacuum or not. If it does then China gets the upper hand otherwise there is little difference to the status quo
    I don't understand. So you're telling me that if the US leaves this region, than China gets the upper hand. So, you believe it, or you have thought about it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    So if you hold the view that China will dominate the region you also imply the US quits and leaves the region with a power vacuum
    Without the US quitting, China is trying to dominate, and will dominate in another 15 years. Where they can't apply force, they bribe and use propaganda. Which country is going to challenge the Chinese in the IOR? GoI? With what? Warships without naval defence missiles?

    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    UK & France developed nukes because after WW2, the americans voted in isolationist govts and both UK & France felt vulnerable to the soviets. The same will repeat in the region, they will go nuclear if necessary
    Who will go nuclear because of the Chinese threat? Sri Lanka? Bangladesh? You mean, maybe, Burma?
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  9. #279
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    Yes it is, or will be. Jiwani/Gwadar, Hambantota. Possibly Chittagong, Maldives in future. Not to rattle other countries, first they build maritime infrastructure, than comes the military part. Just because you haven't heard or seen things, doesn't mean you can deny or reject what people read & think. You want proof? Nehru got proof in 1962. As far as I am concerned, anything the Chinese do raise suspicions. And I am not alone. The GoI too thinks that way. Oh wait, the US administration too thinks that way. And many other countries do.
    The bottom line is what good are these ports in wartime. Getting to the meat of those suspicions is what i'm driving at. Make full use of this board : )


    So? What is the GoI actually doing when it comes to strengthening military force assets? Submit like a meek weasel to tiny countries like Maldives who're under Chinese influence?
    Using up the defense budget for the year unlike the previous administration over ten years. There is a backlog here to catch up. Best that can be done. Which is better than doing nothing


    Nothing is being punctured. Feel good videos is your comfort zone. And the Chinese would solve the geography problem in another decade.
    The only guy to challenge these fear mongering think tank narratives. Fear busting does not attract attention. Just watch that 60 minutes video, substitute Oz for India and its so familiar. What should Oz do, strengthen relations and offer alternatives to the neighbours. Which is what we're doing. Don't even have to match them. The smaller powers play the bigger ones of each other, happy to take what ever they can get. They will not take sides in a bigger power play. Pakistan is the only exception

    How is China going to solve the geography problem in the next decade ? you want to make assertions then show some imagination : )

    Take the US & its allies. How did those allies come to be. WW2. This meant the US could deploy troops there and build up defenses.

    How does China make allies in the region ? China has none and only a few friends. The record is dismal.

    What conditions would allow China to create allies so as to overcome the geography problem. WHO wants to help China take over the region.

    On the contrary the atmosphere today is exactly the opposite thanks to their belligerent behaviour of the last decade.


    You know the threat. You refuse to see it.
    State it then. I find this threat isn't articulated coherently to date. How then to defend against it


    What are the islands that the Chinese built in SCS for? Those islands now have anti-ship cruise missiles, as well as SAM systems. What are the Chinese trying to defend in those artificial islands? I am not going to convince you any further, and I am holding onto my position as well. You are entitled to your thinking and your position on this matter. If you don't like my position, guess what, there are other threads where we can engage.
    Area denial. Keeping opponents out to a certain radius. A way to create an exclusive zone by intimidation. A domestic PR exercise ? And so FONOPS continue and port of call visits by showing the flag are encouraged from partners

    How effective are those defenses in war time. Not a lot i think. Can be taken out. So what good were those reclaimed islands in the end

    And what if they are challenged in peace time. Have those defenses been tested yet. No


    I don't understand. So you're telling me that if the US leaves this region, than China gets the upper hand. So, you believe it, or you have thought about it?
    I'm saying IF the US leaves the region. It's conditional. I don't know if the US will or not. If one plans for their eventual exit then measures need to be taken today. I'm saying the threat becomes more credible on the assumption the US leaves the region.


    Without the US quitting, China is trying to dominate, and will dominate in another 15 years. Where they can't apply force, they bribe and use propaganda. Which country is going to challenge the Chinese in the IOR? GoI? With what? Warships without naval defence missiles?
    Depends on how our interests are being affected. Do the Chinese intend to push us there, in what way. We don't have any disputes with China in the IOR. We aren't threatening their trade or oil flows and vice versa. But its a pressure point we can use if necessary

    China isn't staking out sovereign claims in the IOR. They are building up defenses in the event their interests such as trade or energy flows are challenged. Defensive not offensive. No way to do offensive so far off from their shores.

    Who will go nuclear because of the Chinese threat? Sri Lanka? Bangladesh? You mean, maybe, Burma?
    I mean former US allies, Japan & Korea. Possibly Taiwan. Remember this is in the case the US leaves that region with a power vacuum. With the US there it bottles up the Chinese to their backyard and keeps the cork on the Japanese bottle from blowing
    Last edited by Double Edge; 28 Jun 18, at 12:08.

  10. #280
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Interesting takes from Andrew Small

    Hambantota is a data point not a trend

    The perception that China plans to build military bases through debt-diplomacy is inaccurate

    CPEC is essentially an investment package rather than a serious transit route.



    https://www.brecorder.com/2018/06/11...-to-be-enough/

    BRR: In one of your recent articles, you mentioned that CPEC is essentially an investment package rather than a serious transit route. This is contrary to what officials in Pakistan and China are talking about. How do you substantiate your claim?

    AS: In public, there has long been talk from officials about a transit route, but in private there is much more skepticism, and even more so on the Chinese side. It’s an evocative concept, of course, but the topography of the Karakoram means that it still doesn’t make a great deal of economic sense. It is notable that even though we now have plans running all the way to 2030, there is, for instance, still no pipeline or railway line seriously envisaged. Chinese media outlets have publicly cited their own officials explaining precisely why the costs make it unfeasible.

    It’s not that there will be zero transit traffic – there has always been a modest volume when the Karakoram Highway is functioning, and I’m sure it will increase somewhat when the road conditions south of Gilgit are improved – just not very much. It’s more useful to evaluate CPEC on the basis of the projects that are actually happening or in advanced planning than looking at the exciting maps of routes leading to the Indian Ocean. Pakistan has tried to sell its “strategic economic geography” to China for decades – Beijing has never been convinced by this and wants quite different things from the CPEC.
    BRR: China has also been giving Pakistan loans that are unrelated to CPEC. Globally, does China practice what some skeptics have dubbed as debt-trap diplomacy?

    AS: I do not believe that China deliberately tries to get countries into unsustainable debt with a view to extracting political or military concessions when countries can’t repay. Chinese financial institutions do want most of their money back. And the way they handle cases varies – the Hambantota case, even though it is clearly a cautionary tale, is a data point rather than a trend. In many other instances, China has renegotiated the terms of the loans or in some cases even written them off.

    The concept of “debt trap diplomacy” also lets governments off the hook for their own responsibility in taking on excessive debt. Sure, some governments may lack the capacity to make adequate economic assessments but most of them know exactly what they’re doing. The debt phenomenon is real: a number of countries are accumulating problematic levels of debt through BRI-related enterprises, a large proportion of which is owed to China.

    But the contention that it’s all an ingenious plot on China’s part to trick countries into taking on unviable economic projects in order for them to parley this into land for military bases is just not an accurate characterization of what’s going on. Beijing is looking for economic returns and it gives Chinese policymakers far too much credit to claim that even their poorly-conceived investments and financing decisions are all part of a deliberate plan. Just look at Venezuela as an illustrative example.
    Last edited by Double Edge; 06 Jul 18, at 01:18.

  11. #281
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    Yes. Hambantota was charity. The Chinese are all gone.
    Politicians are elected to serve...far too many don't see it that way - Albany Rifles!

    Loyalty to country always. Loyalty to government, when it deserves it - Mark Twain!

  12. #282
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Politicians are elected to serve...far too many don't see it that way - Albany Rifles!

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  13. #283
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    After Malaysia, Myanmar wants to renegotiate

    Myanmar will ask China to downsize project, minister says | Asian Nikkei review | Jul 04 2018

    $10bn port investment should be 'as lean as possible' to avoid debt trap

    YUICHI NITTA and THUREIN HLA HTWAY, Nikkei staff writers
    July 04, 2018 20:18 JST

    NAYPYITAW -- Myanmar will seek to reduce the scale of a China-led special economic zone project in its western state of Rakhine, Planning and Finance Minister Soe Win said in an exclusive interview.

    Speaking with Nikkei on Tuesday, the minister, a former Deloitte managing partner, stressed the importance of heeding "lessons that we learned from our neighboring countries, that overinvestment is not good sometimes."

    The plan is to create a special zone in Kyaukpyu, which faces the Indian Ocean, at a cost of $10 billion. The project will make the town a pivotal point on China's Belt and Road infrastructure initiative, but concern is growing about the side effects of relying on Chinese financing.

    In 2015, a consortium led by Chinese state investment company Citic group won the rights to develop the zone. Oil and natural gas pipelines are to run from there to China's inland province of Yunnan.

    The development blueprint includes what would be Myanmar's biggest port, capable of accommodating large cargo vessels, with a 1,000-hectare industrial park nearby.

    But Myanmar appears to have taken Sri Lanka's experience as a cautionary tale.

    Last year, Sri Lanka handed Chinese companies the management rights to a port because it was unable to repay its debt to China, which had financed the construction.

    One more point: Kyaukpyu is far from Myanmar's biggest city, Yangon, so it is unlikely that logistics demand will rapidly increase.

    "The main thing is to get good revenue," Soe Win said. "So at the end of the day, we may be able to repay all the debt regarding the project."

    Myanmar wants the project to be "as lean as possible," the minister continued. "We should have cut all the unnecessary expenses. The bigger the projects, the bigger the responsibility to pay back."

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    It remains to be seen exactly how much Myanmar wants to trim. "It is up to the negotiations," Soe Win said, explaining that he could not make a "clean cut" statement.

    "I think China will be very reasonable with us," taking both sides' interests into account, he said.

    Myanmar's external debt at the end of 2017 was $9.6 billion, 40% of which is owed to China. Soe Win acknowledged that "40% of external debt to single country, it is not recommendable."

    Against that backdrop is another concern for Myanmar. In December, State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi and Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed to discuss creating a China-Myanmar economic corridor that would include railways and roads. But the project would put Myanmar further in China's debt.

  14. #284
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    Yes. Hambantota was charity. The Chinese are all gone.
    Sri Lanka is no longer considered high risk. They've learnt their lesson. Does not help to be on the FATF greylist

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    Examining the Debt Implications of the Belt and Road Initiative | CGD | Mar 4 2018

    How does China deal with countries in debt ?

    In countries suffering from debt distress, the Chinese government has provided debt relief in an ad hoc, case-by-case manner.54 It has generally refrained from participating in multilateral approaches to debt relief, though it does participate in debt relief discussions at the international financial institutions and engages informally with IMF staff on individual country cases. This contrasts with other major official creditors, all of whom participate actively in multilateral mechanisms dealing with sovereign defaults, in particular the Paris Club. While China is an observer at meetings of the Paris Club, it is not a member, so it is under no obligation to act in solidarity with Paris Club members or even to inform the Paris Club about the management of its credit activities.

    Without a guiding multilateral or other framework to define China's approach to debt sustainability problems, we only have anecdotal evidence of ad hoc actions taken by China as
    the basis for characterizing the country's policy approach.


    Examples of the ways in which China has managed its claims include the following:

    • In 2011, China reportedly agreed to write off an unknown amount of debt owed by Tajikistan in exchange for some 1,158 square kilometers of disputed territory. At the time, Tajik authorities said they only agreed to provide 5.5 percent of the land that Beijing originally sought.

    • In 2011, with Cuba in a desperate economic situation and seeking debt relief, China, its largest single creditor, agreed to restructure between $4-6 billion of the debt. The details of the transaction were not disclosed, but it reportedly included an agreement by China to extend additional trade credits and financing for port rehabilitation. Some recent reports indicate that some of the debt was forgiven.

    • The IMF estimates that China has delivered over 80 percent of what it is expected to provide under HIPC. It was a creditor to 31 of the 36 HIPC countries, and the most recent publicly available information indicates that it provided relief in at least 28 of them, including 100 percent forgiveness for several (e.g., Burundi, Afghanistan, and Guinea).

    • With Sri Lanka unwilling to service a $8 billion loan at 6 percent interest that was used to finance the construction of the Hambantota Port, China agreed in July 2017 to a debt-for-equity swap accompanied by a 99-year lease for managing the port.

    China has also demonstrated a willingness to provide additional credit so a borrower can avoid default. A prominent example is China’s agreement in early 2017 to extend an RMB 15 billion swap line to Mongolia for three years in support of an IMF Extended Fund Facility. China’s case-by-case approach to debt relief is likely to continue in the absence of full membership in the Paris Club or commitments to some multilateral framework. China gave serious consideration to Paris Club membership during its G20 presidency in 2016 but ultimately did not make a commitment to pursue membership. It did, however, agree to keep the door open and to play a “more constructive role” in Paris Club discussions. Given Paris Club members’ commitment to share data on their claims on a reciprocal basis, a decision by the Chinese authorities to fully participate in Paris Club activities would be a very significant signal of the government’s willingness to change a history of non-transparent credit activities.

    Finally, despite ad hoc approaches to the treatment of debt problems, there are some signs that Chinese officials are moving toward greater policy coherence and discipline when it comes to avoiding unsustainable debt. For example, in November 2017, the China Banking Regulatory Commission issued its first ever regulations for China's policy banks,
    emphasizing greater risk controls for the overseas activities of CDB, China Exim Bank, and the ADBC

  15. #285
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    Politicians are elected to serve...far too many don't see it that way - Albany Rifles!

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