The New York TimesThe New York Times

The U.S.-China rivalry is complicating the world's debt crisis

By Peter S. Goodman

26 Jun 2023 · 8 min read

informed Summary

  1. As scores of middle-and lower-income countries grapple with an intensifying debt crisis, Suriname shows how many of these countries are caught in the geopolitical crossfire between the US and China.

PARAMARIBO, Suriname — Inside his capacious office, his tan curtains drawn against the tropical sun, the president of Suriname expressed sympathy with the striking teachers who were massing outside, taunting him while demanding higher wages.

Three years of unmitigated catastrophe have destroyed spending power in this South American country — the result of global crises landing atop decades of profligate governance. Food and fuel prices have soared, worsened by Russia’s war on Ukraine. The national currency plunged, and the economy cratered just as the pandemic spread death and fear.

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