China infiltrates South America

Michael Fitzgerald By Michael Fitzgerald

Is China colonizing South America right under the U.S.’s nose?

In Venezuela, a worker assembles a Zhejiang Qianjiang Motorcycle Co. Keeway-branded motorcycle. (Credit: Reuters/Jorge Silva)

The fast-growing Asian nation has invested $75 billion in South American countries since 2005. Argentinian soy, Brazilian sugar and Peruvian copper are just some of the commodities flowing back to China as the result.

Some call this a new kind of imperialism, economic colonization. The U.S. famously warned European countries to stay out of this hemisphere in 1823, when President James Monroe issued his Monroe Doctrine. But others point out that the South American countries tend to run trade surpluses with China, and that China’s investments correspond with rising incomes and decreased inequality. That’s in stark contrast to what happened in Latin America during much of the U.S.’s period of dominance.

Plus, “Unlike the Americans, the Chinese do not have all sorts of draconian policy conditions on their finance,” Kevin Gallagher, a professor at Boston University, told Al Jazeera.


Straight to the Source

  • fgg23

    How does Chinese organized crime infiltrate Latin American economies?

  • mffitzgerald

    Why do you ask? Organized crime isn’t the point of the story we’ve curated here.