A recent article by the New York Times (Jane Perlez, “China Competes with West in Aid to its Neighbors”, The New York Times, September 18 2006) was surveying recent Chinese investment in development projects across the world, especially Asia and Africa. One of the key issue is that
Chinese money usually comes unencumbered with conditions for environmental standards or community resettlement that can hold up major projects. The aid does not carry penalties for corruption that are being increasingly used by the World Bank president, Paul D. Wolfowitz. And China’s offers rarely include the extra freight of expensive consultants, provisions that are common to World Bank projects.
If we put this into broader perspective of how global capital works, this is one example of how homeostatic mechanisms not only are the governing mechanisms of markets, but also apply for governance and development in which there are different players facing different constraints and acting up different but interlocked strategies. So for example, (more…)