According to a report published in 2018, China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) project has become synonymous with wasteful spending, environmental destruction, and massive debt burdens, and it aims to make profits for participating country leaders and Chinese companies at the expense of the nation’s natural resources and people.
270 of the 1,814 BRI-related projects faced issues with debt sustainability, labor and environmental norms, national security, transparency, and corruption.
According to a McKinsey survey from 2017, 60 to 80 percent of Chinese companies in Africa admitted to paying bribes to get contracts.
By bribing local authorities or the government in procuring mineral resources, especially rare-earth minerals from African countries, Chinese firms and their officials have spread corruption to the BRI countries.
This indicates that these projects were created to benefit the country’s leaders and Chinese corporations at the expense of the country’s natural resources and people. Numerous countries have failed to repay loans to China due to widespread corruption in the projects, and have thus fallen into a “Debt Trap.”