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China wants to build railway through Brazil for access to ag products

From Folha de S.Paulo:

The China Railway Construction Corporation (CRCC), which is one of the biggest railway companies in the world, is considering the possibility of heading a consortium that would build the East-West Integration Railway (Fiol), connecting it to the port of Ilhéus (Bahia). Only a short stretch of the railway is currently operating.

China’s intentions are clear: it wants to direct soybeans – which, of the products it imports from Brazil, is only behind iron ore – from the midwest of Brazil to the port in Bahia.

But there are geopolitical factors at play as well. China would like to establish alternatives to the Panama Canal, which was financed by the US in the 20th century, and is perceived by the Asian country as being controlled by the United States.

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