Beijing : China, who has been striving to increase its significance in various sectors internationally by challenging a super power like the United States, has started a spree of acquiring important ports for commercial and strategic dominance. A few days ago, it was released, that a leading Chinese company has taken over the port of Paranagua, a Port Management Company of Brazil. On this background, it is disclosed that China had invested $20 billion in multiple overseas ports over the past year.
Four Years ago, President of China, Xi Jinping, had proposed ‘Maritime Silk Road’ under the ‘Belt and Road Initiative’. However, China’s efforts to achieve worldwide maritime dominance on ports and its management had already started. ‘String of Pearls’ is nothing but China’s strategy to control the ports of Myanmar, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Pakistan to encircle its neighboring nation India. Although China’s plan has received a setback, the recent global developments have been a success.
In the past decade, China had successfully acquired the ports of the continents of Asia, Africa, Europe and Latin America. Two major Chinese state owned firms have acquired more than 75 ports and terminals from around 28 countries. This includes countries such as Greece, Spain, Belgium and Italy from Europe, and Morocco, Ivory Coast, Egypt and Djibouti from Africa and Myanmar and Pakistan from Asia.
Although some of the Internationally renowned private companies own more ports and terminals than China, its diplomatic and strategic ambitions are considered as warning to the ports in China’s portfolio alarm. Some analyst claim that in future China can use these as a weapon.
The world is skeptical about the ‘Belt and Road Initiative’, an ambitious scheme, currently executed by China. Though China has said that its objective serves a commercial purpose; many countries worldwide are claiming that this scheme is a part of China’s ongoing effort to become a super power. Some countries have opposed China’s scheme and expressed doubts about its motives.
On this background, China’s move to dominate the trade via sea route in the international market is expected to draw attention.