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At the G7, Washington launches a vast investment program supposed to thwart China

The project is supposed to thwart the huge construction sites financed by China in developing countries. On the initiative of the United States, the G7 put on track, Sunday June 26, a vast program of investments intended for these developing countries.

“With G7 partners, we aim to mobilize $600 billion [un peu moins de 570 milliards d’euros] by 2027 for global infrastructure investments”said the White House shortly before a speech by Joe Biden unveiling this proposal at the summit of the seven industrialized countries (Germany, Canada, United States, France, Italy, Japan, United Kingdom), which was held in the southern Germany.

The President of the United States assured that this program was based on “shared values” such as the “transparency”respect for workers’ rights, the environment, gender equality. “We offer better options”he commented.

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Neither the US president nor the other leaders mentioned China’s name, but they made obvious allusions to it. The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, has thus estimated that the partner countries of Westerners « [avaient] the choice “ – understand that of going to democracies rather than to Beijing – to develop their electricity networks or their medical infrastructures.

Westerners want to distance themselves from China, which has invested heavily in many developing countries, to build infrastructure there as part of the so-called “new silk roads” program, or to ensure access to certain materials. raw.

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200 billion United States over five years

Beijing is nevertheless accused of carrying out its projects by resorting to unprofitable, opaque, even perilous loans, which would aggravate the debt problems of already vulnerable countries. Hence the “transparency” promised, on the contrary, by the G7 countries.

The Global Infrastructure Partnership (« Partnership for Global Infrastructure ») must “Make the world a better deal on infrastructure investment”, underlined the German Chancellor, Olaf Scholz. The United States alone promises to “to mobilize” some “200 billion dollars” over five years.

Most “to mobilize” does not mean that the States themselves will provide these considerable sums. Washington arrives at a total of 200 billion dollars by combining loans, public financing – partly already existing – and private financing encouraged by the American executive. With these big numbers still uncertain and these good intentions, can Westerners reverse the trend in the face of China? The United States wants to believe it.

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The Chinese Offensive “has existed for years and has resulted in many cash payments and many investments”a senior White House official commented on Sunday. “But it’s really not too late”he assured about the G7 initiative.

“Many countries that have received funds or investments from the BRI program [acronyme de la dénomination en anglais Belt and Road Initiative] now understand, years later, that they are more indebted, that their GDP has not increased significantly, that the so-called investments have not reached their populations”estimated the same source, who did not wish to be named.

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“Sub-Saharan Africa will clearly be a major priority [du partenariat lancé par le G7] »said this senior official of the American executive, but assuring that Central America, Southeast Asia, or Central Asia were also regions “extremely important”.

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The World with AFP

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