China continues to cut back Latin America loans

Chinese policy bank loans to Latin America dip to 10-year lows as oil-backed deals wane and new lenders and partnerships emerge

Wai Tan, Shanghai, China
Wai Tan, Shanghai, China. Photo: Li Yang/Shutterstock

For the fourth consecutive year, China’s two main banks tasked with financing overseas development have rolled back loans to Latin America, according to new research from Boston University and think-tank The Inter-American Dialogue. The China Development Bank (CBD) and the Import-Export Bank of China (China Exim) lent USD 1.1 billion to the region in 2019, the lowest amount for a single year in the last decade, down from USD 2.1 billion in 2018.

Instead of lending directly to Latin American governments, Chinese banks are investing in energy and infrastructure projects by way of funds or financing Chinese state-owned companies...

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