Stratbase ADR Institute’s Second Quarter 2021 SPARK: “Chinese Investments in the Philippines: Are They Corrosive Capital?”

It is with pleasure that we share with you Stratbase ADR Institute’s SPARK for June 2021 entitled, “Chinese Investments in the Philippines: Are They Corrosive Capital?” and authored by Prof. Edwin P. Santiago, Fellow and Member of the Board of Stratbase ADR Institute.

This research explains the conditions and dynamics of Chinese investments in our economy by discussing two banner infrastructure projects under the Build, Build, Build Program, funded by an ODA from China, and are officially included in the BRI list—the Chico River Pump Irrigation Project and the New Centennial Water Source-Kaliwa Dam Project. The third project, also an ODA from China, is the Safe Philippines Project and the fourth case pertains to the DITO Telecommunity, which represents an infusion of investment in the Philippines.

The underlying controversies, among others, revolve around the disregard for the rule of law, the significant lack of transparency and accountability in procurement procedures, the onerous provisions in terms of disadvantageous interest rates and waiver of sovereign immunity, debt-trap diplomacy, individual piracy, and threats to national security.

In sum, the corrosive nature of China’s investments and the Duterte administration’s accommodation of such comprise the inimical nature of China-funded projects vis-à-vis Philippine economy.

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