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What is Singapore’s role in BRI?

The Edge Singapore
The Edge Singapore10/1/2018 08:00 AM GMT+08  • 4 min read
What is Singapore’s role in BRI?
SINGAPORE (Oct 1): Neo-colonialism. A new version of the Marshall Plan. These are just two descriptions of the Belt and Road Initiative, China’s ambitious plan to invest in infrastructure projects — ports, railways, power plants — that will be criti
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SINGAPORE (Oct 1): Neo-colonialism. A new version of the Marshall Plan. These are just two descriptions of the Belt and Road Initiative, China’s ambitious plan to invest in infrastructure projects — ports, railways, power plants — that will be critical developments in the participating countries. And, a year ago, the word on the street was Singapore was not going to be a beneficiary of the billions of dollars Beijing was expected to dole out as part of BRI.

The BRI blueprint spans Southeast Asia, and stretches west towards Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh. Projects include a US$6 billion ($8.2 billion) high-speed railway between Laos and China that is partly financed by Beijing. In Cambodia, Chinese companies have invested in several hydropower plants as well as been involved in a deal to build a US$1.8 billion expressway. According to Oxford Economics, Chinese investments in the BRI project totalled US$402 billion in the first half of this year. Chinese direct investments in foreign companies and infrastructure assets totalled US$146 billion, or more than double what it was before the initiative was launched in 2013.

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