Browse our analysis section for news and articles on topics such as China's Belt and Road Initiative (OBOR), the world's evolving digital infrastructure competition, and the stakes for U.S. policy.
In March 2021, CSIS will host a Master’s-level introduction to China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The course will explain what the BRI is, what it is not, and how it is impacting commercial and strategic realities on the ground.
This report identifies key economic trends, emerging technologies, and strategic options for defending global networks through 2030.
Covid-19 has boosted Asia-Europe rail freight traffic during 2020, as Chinese exports have soared amid the global economic slowdown. However, it remains to be seen if the surge in traffic and rise of emerging routes will endure after the pandemic recedes.
This series of case studies underscores the poor state of North Korea’s existing energy infrastructure, illustrates different models for delivering projects, and considers the strategic implications of different paths forward for the peninsula's energy connections.
Subsea cables are the world’s information super-highways. This guide for policymakers describes how these essential systems work and offers recommendations for advancing U.S. economic and strategic interests.
This report, the third in a series on Chinese economic activities in the Western Balkans, provides recommendations for U.S. and partner responses to China's growing economic and political influence in the region and a “red flags” checklist to help identify activities that warrant further scrutiny.
China is delivering digital infrastructure in emerging markets that is shifting the strategic landscape in its favor. The Biden administration needs a strategy for competing with China’s Digital Silk Road that begins at home.
U.S. infrastructure has been dangerously neglected, even as it has become more strategically important with climate change, innovation, and China’s rise. At stake is the United States’ military readiness, national resiliency, and global competitiveness.
China is set to host representatives from 17 Central and Eastern European countries for its latest "17+1" summit on February 9, 2020. What is the significance of this unique regional grouping? This collection of CSIS analysis explains the initiative's development and its significance for the region since its announcement in 2012.
While China learns from past experience and recalibrates the Belt and Road Initiative, it is giving momentum to competing visions for connectivity that will deliver results during 2021 and the years to come.
While China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) writ large has been slowing, a trend that predates the pandemic, its digital dimension is accelerating.
The Australian state of Victoria, which signed a Belt and Road MoU in 2018, has little to show from Chinese President Xi Jinping’s signature foreign policy vision.
This series explores the dynamics of China's engagement across Southeast Europe through the BRI, including the 17+1 cooperation platform, the role of political elites and state media, Chinese outbound tourism to the region, Chinese political values and governance, and the role of Covid-19.
A notorious ex-gangster from China is launching an $18 billion economic development zone in Myawaddy, Myanmar under the banner of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). But experts say the project's plans are centered on illegal gambling. If true, this could spell trouble for Beijing.
The announcement of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden has led to speculation about the new administration's approach to the $60 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a flagship project of China's Belt and Road Initiative that has previously been criticized by the U.S. for a lack of transparency.
The debt owed to China by African countries has risen dramatically under Beijing's Belt and Road Initiative, including in Zambia, which is poised to default on a $42.5 million interest payment, fueling criticisms that China has been slow to offer debt relief amid the pandemic.
Thailand and China have signed a $1.6B deal to construct a segment of a high-speed rail, a component of China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), meant to connect Bangkok with northeastern Thailand.
This paper discusses the geopolitical dynamics of the Indo-Pacific, including the impacts of Covid-19, and emerging foreign policy initiatives, and offers recommendations for how Japan can solidify a comprehensive leadership role in this critical, multipolar region.
China is reluctant to finance the Main Line 1 railway, the largest Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) project in Pakistan, at the 1 percent interest rate requested by Islamabad, which will likely delay the project's anticipated January 2021 start date, Nikkei reports.
During a recent speech commemorating China's Shenzhen Special Economic Zone, Chinese president Xi Jinping promoted the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) as a pathway to global collaboration and named the city as a driver of China's innovation and technology ambitions.
Pakistan's federal government has initiated land reclamation and urbanization efforts on the islands of Bundal and Bhuddo, which were previously under the administration of Sindh province, sparking concern among local politicians that the islands could be sold to China as part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.
Widespread protests against the election of President Alexander Lukashenko and rising economic instability in Belruas have led to increased pressure on the government from both the West and traditional ally Russia, leading Minsk to turn increasingly toward China, a growing source of infrastructure investment in recent years, for economic support, Nikkei reports.
Chinese President Xi Jinping surprised the world in late September by announcing that China would become carbon neutral by 2060. But this promise will amount to little if Xi's signature foreign policy vision, the Belt and Road Initiative, continues exporting China's environmental challenges globally. China's poor environmental record abroad presents a strategic opportunity for the U.S., if only Washington would seize it.
Ties with China appearing to be cooling among Eastern European countries, underscored by high-level visits to Taiwan, and increasing security cooperation with the U.S. on 5G, and spurred by a growing number of failed Belt and Road infrastructure projects, slowing Chinese investment, and growing national security concerns over China's expanding espionage operations, Nikkei reports.
On September 29, CSIS hosted an online discussion of Jonathan Hillman's new book on China's Belt and Road Initiative, The Emperor’s New Road: China and the Project of the Century, moderated by Axios China reporter Bethany Allen-Ebrahimian.
This case study of Gwadar port, part of a series on China’s Indian Ocean “strategic strongpoints” (战略支点), reveals that while Gwadar may one day serve as a major platform for China’s economic, diplomatic, and military interactions across the region, as of August 2020 it remains largely underdeveloped and underutilized.
This report examines Chinese economic activities in Serbia to shed light on China’s political and economic objectives, its mechanisms for influence, and the implications of its activities, including a second wave of digital infrastructure projects.
Xi Jinping's promise of carbon neutrality by 2060 will amount to little if his signature foreign policy vision, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), continues exporting China’s environmental challenges globally. China’s poor environmental record abroad presents a strategic opportunity for the United States, if only Washington would seize it.
Pakistan's leading Taliban group has announced the reunification of several breakaway factions which experts believe could pose risks to Chinese-funded projects along the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, including the Karakoram Highway Phase II, the Suki Kinari Hydropower Station, and the Havelian Dry Port, Nikkei reports.
Fishermen at Pakistan's Gwadar Port, part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, are protesting an incoming fleet of 20 Chinese deep-sea trawlers off Sindh and Baluchistan provinces which they fear could further deplete Pakistan's dwindling marine resources, Nikkei reports.
The U.S. has blacklisted one of the Belt and Road Initiative's largest construction companies, the Chinese state-owned enterprise China Communications Construction Co. (CCCC), and its subsidiaries for its role in building artificial islands in the contested waters of the South China Sea, Nikkei reports.
Pakistan has reopened two closed border crossings and opened three new ones with Afghanistan at China's urging in a move that experts believe is intended to extend the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) into Afghanistan, Nikkei reports.
Beijing has relaunched a $2 billion coal mine and power project in southeastern Pakistan amid rising tensions with Austalia, China's largest source of imported coal.
Amid economic contraction, Greece’s government has increasingly turned to China for investment in power transmission, an underwater link, and the seaport of Piraeus, Nikkei reports.
Turkey's Sovereign Wealth Fund is looking to China for investment in a number of major infrastructure projects and to tie Turkey into China's Belt and Road Initiative much more deeply, Nikkei reports.
Bangladesh has described their relationship with China and the Belt & Road Initiative as solely "economic diplomacy," but China's expanding trade and investment in the country also threatens to undermine Indian influence, Nikkei reports.
Pakistan's top economic body on Wednesday authorized a $6.8 billion railway upgrade, its costliest project to date as part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), Nikkei reports.
Public support for China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is declining in Belarus amid protests against President Alexander Lukashenko, who has been a proponent of the Chinese initiative, Nikkei reports.
Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin are attempting to put economics at the center of their strategic partnership, but a closer look at four dimensions of China-Russia connectivity reveals a partnership of unequals that will become even more lopsided in the future.
China's state-owned and private companies are increasingly dominant across the global maritime supply chain, aided by an opaque system of formal and informal government support that is unrivaled in both its scale and scope.
China, Pakistan and the Kohala Hydropower Company, a subsidiary of China Three Gorges Corporation, have signed a $2.4 billion deal for the construction of a 1,124-megawatt hydropower plant in disputed Kashmir, Nikkei reports.
Eight people were killed Monday when members of the Baloch Liberation Army (BLA), which is openly opposed to China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), attacked the Pakistan Stock Exchange following the recent acquisition of a 40 percent stake in the Exchange by Chinese investors, Nikkei reports.
China has completed its Beidou satellite system, its answer to the U.S.-based Global Positioning System (GPS), advancing Beijing's effort to cut its reliance on U.S. technology, Nikkei reports. China has exported Beidou products to 120 countries as part of it's Belt and Road Initiative.
Pakistan has reduced its annual allocation to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) from $241 million last year to $159 million in the budget running to June 2021, Nikkei reports.
A new report released by analytics company Refinitiv on Tuesday showed a 15.6% drop in the number of new BRI projects announced in the first quarter of this year, compared with the same period in 2019. The value of the projects slid from $386.08 billion to $137.43 billion over the same period, Nikkei reports.
U.S. promises of aid to Nepal have some political officials there worried that such aid could damage the country's blossoming relations with China and its Belt and Road Initiative, Nikkei reports.
The Indonesian government has begun discussions on possible Japanese participation in a planned high-speed railway between Jakarta and Bandung, hoping to spur progress on the delayed Chinese-led project as costs mount, Nikkei reports.
The coronavirus pandemic could have serious impacts on economic growth in Laos, which is already struggling due to significant debt taken on to finance a large range of Chinese-backed infrastructure projects, Nikkei reports.
Indonesia plans to extend the tracks of the $6 billion Jakarta-Bandung rail project being built with China to ensure economic viability, but is facing a one year delay due to the coronavirus pandemic, Nikkei reports.