China’s “Belt and Road” Initiative represents a sweeping vision for establishing a global economic network of trade and development, with infrastructure projects in nearly 70 countries stretching all the way to Western Europe. This collection of interviews and articles examines how the ambitious gambit—also known as One Belt, One Road, the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road—is affecting bilateral relationships while bolstering China’s status as a global power.
Over the past two decades, China became an increasingly powerful player in Latin America, displacing the U.S. as a top trading partner and strengthening its political influence in the region. But now, China’s growth has suddenly slowed, creating significant economic risks for Latin America—and opportunities for the United States.
China’s expanding economic footprint in Latin America over the past 25 years has driven economic growth and shifted the geopolitical narrative across the region. But that engagement is now shifting as priorities change in China, Latin America and the U.S., at a time when Chinese growth is slowing and U.S.-China tensions are rising.
EU officials have been careful to avoid framing Global Gateway, an infrastructure development initiative, as a response to China’s Belt and Road Initiative, but comparisons between the two frameworks are inevitable. It is no surprise, then, that the narratives the EU uses to discuss the Global Gateway contest those surrounding the BRI.