Joe Biden proposed to invest in a handful of global infrastructure projects as part of a program that rivals communist China’s foreign influence on Nov. 8.
A senior White House official confirmed U.S. representatives recently visited Ghana and Senegal to inspect infrastructure projects. They shortlisted at least 10 prospects for the president’s plan, according to Reuters.
President Biden initiated the Build Back Better World (B3W) at a Group of 7 (G7) summit back in June. B3W seeks to finance projects for developing nations and counter the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
An independent task force report, sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations, warns the United States risks letting the communist regime extend its world dominance if it fails to curb the BRI.
“If BRI meets little competition or resistance, Beijing could become the hub of global trade, set important technical standards that would disadvantage non-Chinese companies, lock countries into carbon-intensive power generation, have greater influence over countries’s political decisions–and acquire more power projection capabilities for its military,” the task force report said.
China’s BRI is touted to facilitate economic growth between Asia with Africa and Europe. However, it requires signing non-disclosure or collateral agreements that let the CCP seize ports, airports or other key infrastructure in the event of a financial default.
Biden’s B3W offer does not make any such a requirement. It also prioritizes climate, health, digital technology, and gender equality.
The White House notes Biden promises to finance developing countries with their infrastructure projects in a manner that is “transparent, sustainable, adheres to high standards, and catalyzes the private sector where possible.”
U.S. officials visited Ecuador, Panama, and Colombia to hunt for applicants back in October. Asia is expected to be their next stop before the end of 2021.
Formal plans are expected to be discussed at the December G7 summit. They hope to find “flagship projects that could launch by the start of next year,” according to the newswire agency.
Chinese foreign ministry claims Beijing initiated the BRI to improve world connection. Spokesman Wang Wenbin doubts Biden’s effort will make a difference, and accuses the Democrat of decoupling connectivity.