Mombasa port of Kenya: India may have to face another setback on the strategic front in the days to come. If Kenya did not repay debt of China, then the strategically important Mombasa Port could be occupied by China. Earlier, Sri Lanka had lost its Hambantota port to China due to non-payment of loans.
According to the Economic Times, if Kenyan Railway Corporation did not repay $ 2.2 billion of Exim Bank of China, then Kenya could lose Mombasa Port to China. The money was taken by the Kenya Government for the construction of Mombasa-Nairobi Standard Gauge Railway, which was built by Chinese government company China Roads and Bridges Corporation.
According to the report of Kenya’s Auditor General, according to the payment agreement, the proceeds from the Kenya Ports Authority will be used to pay the debt. Kenya is a key partner in China’s Belt and Road Initiative.
Why is there a concern for India?
Located on the Indian Ocean, Kenya is the first country in South Africa, where India has jointly launched a joint initiative in the field of medicine with its foreign partner Japan. Kenya is one of India’s leading defense and economic partners in Africa. That is why India has a closer look at the whole issue.
It is notable that after failing to pay the billions of dollars of debt Sri Lanka had to hand over their Hambantota port in December 1917 to China for 99 years. At the same time, due to failure to repay the loan, Zambia had to hand over its international airport to China in September 2018.
Yun was removed from Humboldt Sri Lanka
Whenever the then President of Sri Lanka, Mahinda Rajapakse, asked for help from his fellow country-lone loan and ambitious port project, it was never denied for him. Although the feasibility report kept saying that this port will not work. Even many countries like India refused this. The result was that during the tenure of Mahinda Rajapaksa, the loan of Sri Lanka went on increasing.
After the ouster of Rajapakse from power in 2015, the new government has struggled to pay the Humberota Port Development Project. After several rounds of talks and heavy pressures with China, the government handed over 15,000 acres of land to 99 years in December last year. After this move of Sri Lanka, China got a chance to reclaim a few hundred miles away from rival India. For China it was an edge from both military and business perspectives.
This is China’s strategy(Mombasa port of Kenya)
This case is the best example of China’s strategy, under which it takes any country to its credit and other ways and makes its strong hold there. Similar fears are being raised about Chinese President Xi Chunfing’s belt and road project.
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