China is scared of the United States, loathe as it is to admit it. China may be powerful, but its power is built on trade. Its trade, in turn, depends on maritime transportation, and the United States, with its powerful navy, controls the seas. And no matter how hard China tries to modernize its military, its navy will be weaker than the United States’ for some time. This is why China is looking for overland trade routes to circumvent its eastern ocean. To that end, however, it has to build the requisite infrastructure.
Enter Southeast Asia, the gateway to the Indian Ocean and a region that is ripe for the kind of infrastructure investment Beijing can provide. Perhaps no country in the region stands to gain more from Chinese investment than Myanmar, which is struggling to find its footing after its transition from military to civilian rule. In the following report, we will look at the ways in which China has already bolstered regional infrastructure, and we will ch