But in reality, what Beijing is doing is investing its money in foreign assets rather than investing in its domestic infrastructure. It’s not just toilets and basic sanitation that are thin on the ground. So is an awful lot of essential infrastructure, such as hospitals and adequate schools in the country’s vast hinterland.
If a poor Chinese villager gets seriously ill it’s a choice between treatment and penury – or dying. That’s something often forgotten when we talk about the great global imbalance – where America and Britain borrow too much and the Chinese and the Middle East lend them money.
This is money that could be used to help villagers in western China.
And it’s a big reason the Chinese economy has been called “unstable, unbalanced, uncoordinated and unsustainable” – not by an American economist, but by China’s premier Wen Jiabao. (Aditya Chakrabortty in Guardian)