Silk Road 2.0: China in a Post-Pandemic World
Why China wants to own the world’s undersea Internet cables
Deep sea submarine data cables are the lifeblood of the world’s electronic communications, allowing for Zoom calls, credit card transactions and YouTube videos. It’s no wonder China is ramping up its ambitions to build, own and operate such cables, as part of its Digital Silk Road across the world. Chinese telcos like Huawei, Zte, China Telecom, China Mobile and China Unicom have been investing in the construction and maintenance of submarine cables. including as part of major international consortia. But China’s plans have raised serious security concerns in the West, with the potential for espionage and cyberwarfare. The US has deemed Chinese companies involved as a national security risk.
The pandemic has seriously impacted one-fifth of the projects in China’s Belt and Road initiative. Now, a version 2 of the signature BRI has emerged. In this series, we travel across the world to report on a new Digital, Health and Green Silk Road. Discover the links between the digital economies of ASEAN and China. Uncover the truth behind China’s overseas coal investing. And, witness if China’s vaccine diplomacy can help the world recover from COVID-19.