Chinese Development Finance
Since the beginning of the 21st century, China has dramatically expanded its overseas development finance program and established itself as a financier of first resort for many low- and middle-income countries. But Chinese donors and lenders rarely disclose the specific terms and conditions or implementation arrangements that govern their overseas development projects.
This knowledge gap makes it challenging for analysts to understand the social, economic, and environmental implications of Chinese development finance. It is also a major obstacle to evidence-based policymaking.
AidData seeks to address this problem by systematically tracking the universe of Chinese government-financed development projects and rigorously categorizing them according to established international aid reporting standards. This approach makes it possible to answer a wide range of research and policy questions about the scale, composition, aims, and impacts of Chinese development finance:
- Which countries and sectors are receiving the most—and least—Chinese development finance? How has the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) influenced Beijing’s overseas lending and grant-giving activities??
- How are these projects being financed and which countries have the highest levels of sovereign and hidden debt exposure to China?
- Which Chinese and host country organizations are responsible for implementing these projects?
- What types of problems do Chinese development projects most and least frequently encounter during implementation? Corruption scandals, labor strikes, environmental disasters, defaults, bankruptcies, or public protests?
- Do Chinese development projects fare better or worse when they are undertaken by Chinese versus host country organizations?
- How have Chinese government-financed power plants affected economic development and human health outcomes in geographically proximate areas?