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Chinese Billionaire Signs Deal for 100 year Takeover of Nicaragua’s New ‘Grand Canal’ Project

21st Century Wire says…

Plans are afoot for a new Nicaraguan canal that will dwarf the existing Panama Canal to its south, but the only problem is that the project will effectively partition central America’s largest lake.

Although the deal has been fast-tracked by the Ortega government, the local population do not support it at all, not least of all because the project will decimate Lake Nicaragua – and its fresh water that is the region’s most valuable natural resource.

Local residents are threatening nothing short of armed insurrection, if (or when) Chinese bulldozers show up: “There is going to be a massacre because we are not leaving our land, our lives, and we’ll fight for it until death.”

Chinese billionaire Wang Jing celebrates deal with Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega (Image: Bloomberg)

Critics believe that this deal amounts to a near full foreign Chinese takeover of a large portion of the Nicaraguan economy, and with a cost of at least $40 billion, the project’s value will be four times the size of country’s 2011 gross domestic product. 

President Ortega handed a 100-year concession to Chinese telecommunications magnet Wang Jing and Wang’s Hong Kong-based HKND Group (registered in the Cayman Islands).

In addition to Lake Nicaragua, Wang’s lucrative concession also includes control over giant tracks of Nicaraguan private and public required to build and manage the canal. The Chinese also net a number of other sweeteners in the deal – including two ports, free trade zones, airport, and hotel and resort properties.

It’s also highly probable that Nicaragua will become a new off-shore banking center once free trade areas are established within the canal zone becomes built up, as well as a completely deregulated, Chinese-owned and run off-shore gambling destination.

The Chinese kingpin has already moved to mitigate any western anti-Chinese, or activist criticism, as Bloomberg reports:

“Wang’s closely held HKND has hired Ronald MacLean-Abaroa, the former mayor of La Paz, Bolivia, and member of the advisory board to Transparency International and a consultant with the World Bank.”

Aside from the obvious environment destruction which will occur from this unprecedented industrial operation, it will ultimately transform the face of Nicaragua’s business culture – a future in which Chinese financial leverage and connections will become absolutely necessary in order to engage in any commercial property development or enterprise.

On the international shipping front, the project will give Chinese interests complete control over a large portion of international manufacturing and shipping distribution. With promises of faster transit for commercial shipping through Central America, Wang’s ‘El Gran’, or Inter-Oceanic Canal in Nicaragua will take away traffic and billions of dollars of annual business away from the Panama Canal, still largely regarded as a US-controlled interest.

A century ago, it was US and British billionaire scions who were doing these same deals, amassing power and wealth that would steer over 100 years of Anglo-American dominance across the globe.

Now it’s the Chinese who have all the leverage, liquidity – and power…

Giant canal threatens way of life on the banks of Lake Nicaragua

Nina Lakhani

A dozen or so cattle farmers are gathered at a ranch in the isolated community of Quebrada Seca, on the south-east corner of Lake Nicaragua.

It is nightfall after a piercingly hot, exhausting day but the farmers are on their feet and fired up about the proposed Inter-Oceanic Canal, which threatens to wash away their entire community.

LAKE NICARAGUA: One of the world’s most fertile regions – sold to a Chinese scion for a pittance (Image Source: Muppet Dogs)

“This is one of the most fertile regions in Nicaragua, and the government has sold it behind our backs to the Chinese, they’ve sold our heritage, our sovereignty,” says Arnulfo Sequeira, 51, a father of four with 200 acres of land and 100 cattle.

“There is going to be a massacre because we are not leaving our land, our lives, and we’ll fight for it until death.”

This picturesque setting, where most people still travel on horseback and children play under shady mango trees, is fighting for survival against plans for a 175-mile long shipping canal which would divide Nicaragua in two. From the Pacific to the Caribbean coast, the canal would dissect Central America’s largest lake – the country’s main water source – and force more than 100,000 people from their homes. If the Chinese company tasked with building the canal get the go ahead, it will become the world’s largest engineering project, dwarfing the Panama Canal in size.

Along the planned route, it is provoking a blend of anger, fear and defiance not witnessed since the civil war ended in 1988.

(…) “I’m not against the canal or development, but this project is brutal,” says Roger Garcia Rios, 69, a retired biology professor. “It’s inhumane and unpatriotic. Any risk to our lake is unacceptable and we will do everything humanly possible to protect it. Without water, there is no life.” …

Continue this article at Telegraph

READ MORE CHINA NEWS AT: 21st Century Wire China Files



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