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China must be persuaded to keep BRI within international rules

Beijing's road back to global greatness goes via partnership not one-sided expansionism

| China

The recent controversy over China's Belt and Road Initiative sparked by claims that it is pushing partner countries into debt traps has prompted suggestions that Beijing might review or even scale down the huge project.

This is most unlikely. Chinese officials have heard the criticisms that have been voiced, not least by Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, who indirectly referred to Beijing's big debt-financed schemes as "a new form of colonialism." But China will not be seriously diverted from its course as it sees BRI as nothing less than the fulfilment of a historic mission.

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