The New York TimesThe New York Times

What happens to a poor, forgotten nation when China rushes in

By Damien Cave

23 Jan 2023 · 7 min read

Editor's Note

Negative views of China around the world are rising, according to this NYT feature, which takes us to the Solomon Islands. There, China is increasingly seen as an "imperious and corrupting force."

HONIARA, Solomon Islands — Down a dirt road outside the Solomon Islands’ capital city, past Chinese construction projects and shops where Chinese merchants sell snacks and clothes, a tribal chief tried to explain what it feels like to have a rising superpower suddenly take an interest in a poor, forgotten place.

“At first,” said the chief, Peter Kosemu, 50, as he sat in the shade on Guadalcanal, the largest of the Solomon Islands, “most people just wanted to see what was going on.”

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