As Brazil and China become the world’s leading exporter and importer of soybeans respectively, Chinese companies have sought investments in Brazil to wrest greater control over the flows and profits of the international soybean trade from North Atlantic-based transnational companies. While some promote these as positive “South-South cooperation”, many others condemn them as neocolonial “land grabs” that displace peasants, cause environmental degradation, and deindustrialize the Brazilian economy.
China is one of the major investors in hydropower development in mainland Southeast Asia, yet Chinese involvement in hydropower varies across the region. Popular and expert viewpoints on China’s investment in hydropower also vary widely.
Since the liberalization of the Sino-Soviet border, Chinese peasants, migrants, and investors have been actively engaged in agriculture in the Russian Far East (RFE). These range from agricultural laborers contracted by labor-exporting firms, to farmers who have set up their own small and medium-sized farms.
New geopolitical dynamics and the surge for natural resources, such as land, accompany the rise of the BRICS countries in the global arena. In this paper, I discuss the case of Chinese agricultural land investments in the Central Asian state, Tajikistan. Emerging from a Soviet past, Tajikistan seems to be on its way to becoming one of China’s newest satellite states.
Industrial tree plantations (ITP), as a newly emerging sector, is expanding quickly and massively in Southern China, involving foreign corporations (including Finnish and Indonesian) tied to a variety of domestic partners, both state and corporate. In some places, the villagers embrace the land deals, while in others these land deals have provoked conflicts.
Development cooperation is an increasingly prominent focus in Chinese foreign diplomacy, and a central justification for Chinese firms’ engagement in large-scale land acquisitions (LSLAs) across the global South.