China's Global Role

A New "China Syndrome"

Saturday, September 1, 2007
From September 2007 World Rivers Review China is home to thousands of dams, including what is probably the world’s most notorious, the Three Gorges Dam. This project’s gigantism is the root of some of its worst problems. The massive project set records for number of people displaced (at least one million), number of cities and towns drowned (13 cities, 140 towns, 1,350 villages), and length of reservoir (more than 400 miles). Now, its record-breaking environmental impacts are beginning to fester. The Wall Street Journal reports, “a year after completion, the project has new problems

China Triggers New Global Dam Boom

Thursday, October 11, 2007
From September 2007 World Rivers Review Country's Economic Expansion Adds to Pressure on World's Rivers On August 27, Miloon Kothari, the UN Special Rapporteur on Housing Rights, sounded an alarm on human rights abuses over Sudan's Merowe and Kajbar dam projects. "I have received numerous reports of violations of civil and political rights," Kothari warned. The violations included "the shooting of unarmed demonstrators, arbitrary arrests of activists, and repressive measures against the press." The UN Reporter called on all actors involved in Merowe a

World Rivers Review – China Triggers Global Dam Boom – Sept. 2007

Overview: China's economic expansion is adding pressure on the world’s rivers, and triggering a new global dam boom. The world's biggest dam builder is going global. The Chinese government is supporting the development of controversial dams in Africa, Southeast Asia and other parts of the world to create jobs for China, and to strengthen relations with other governments. The latest issue of our news magazine World Rivers Review examines the role that China is playing in damming the world's rivers. Download the September 2007 issue to learn more about this troubling tr

China's Global Role: Other Resources

Monday, October 8, 2007
Resources for further research on China's role in dam building overseas, organized into the following categories: International Rivers's partners; civil society organizations, networks, and publications; academic sites; Chinese banks and export credit agencies; Chinese government institutions; and, Chinese dam building companies. Civil Society Organizations, Networks, and PublicationsFriends of the Earth. Friends of the Earth works to monitor and influence commercial banks and their lending practices within China.Bank Track Bank Track is a network of 24 international civil society organization


This list provides information on energy and water resource management in China.These updates will include relevant news digests, press advisories and project background information. Expect 1–2 e–mails per week.

Chinese Pledge to Support Zambezi Dam

Tuesday, August 1, 2006
The China Export-Import Bank agreed in April 2006 to finance the proposed Mphanda Nkuwa Dam on the Zambezi River in Mozambique. The river basin and its delta are already suffering major environmental impacts from numerous dams upstream, including two of Africa's biggest, Cahora Bassa and Kariba. The environmental degradation in turn affects about a quarter of Mozambique's population, who depend upon the river's natural support systems for their livelihoods.  Chinese engineering company Sinohydro will lead the consortium to build the US$2.3 billion project. According to local m

Export Credit Agencies and Environmental Standards: An Invitation to Join the Dialogue

Friday, December 1, 2006
The growing importance of China Exim Bank In China, approximately one fifth of humanity lives on only 7% of the world’s cultivable land. The country does not have sufficient reserves of oil, timber or mineral resources to sustain its rapid economic growth. Foreign investment and trade contracts help to secure the resources which China lacks at home. Exports also help to overcome the permanent employment crisis which China’s rapid rural transformation has created.1 In line with the country’s "going out" strategy, China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001. Since th

NGOs Warn of "Environmental Money Laundering"

Thursday, July 21, 2005
Six large international banks are currently arranging a $1 billion bond for China Exim Bank, the world’s third largest export credit agency. China Exim Bank is financing several environmentally and socially destructive projects in countries with abysmal human rights records. International Rivers and Friends of the Earth/US warn that given China Exim Bank’s track record, the pending bond issue will undermine the environmental standards of private banks and result in environmental money laundering. BNP Paribas, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, Merrill Lynch and Bank of China International ar

Western Banks Financing China’s Export Import Bank: A Case of Environmental Money Laundering

Thursday, July 21, 2005
Executive Summary Representatives of Western banks and export credit agencies frequently argue that their environmental policies are being undercut by financial institutions from middle–income countries, and particularly from China. It is ironic that the same banks miss no opportunity to provide finance to their competitors from China and other countries. Chinese civil society and institutions such as China’s State Environmental Protection Agency have achieved impressive environmental progress in recent months. China’s Export–Import Bank has so far not been part of this progress. T

Memorandum on the Merowe Dam Project

Monday, January 29, 2007
Submitted to His Excellency Zhang Dong, Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to Sudan, at the Occasion of the Visit of President Hu Jintao to Sudan The Leadership Office of the Hamadab Affected People (LOHAP), International Rivers and The Corner House welcome the positive potential for economic and social development which China’s growing role as a trading partner and investor has for Africa. Yet development requires more than economic growth. The interests of local communities and the environment must be safeguarded in the growing trade and financial relations between China an


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