China seems to be moving in to fill the void left by America’s withdrawal of troops in Afghanistan. The U.S. military left its final base in the region on Friday.
An anonymous source reported Kabul authorities are now working with China toward a deal, which would invest in Afghanistan’s infrastructure. The deal, through China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), is a trillion dollar program that has provided funding for a variety of infrastructure projects.
Sources report the deal would also extend the $62 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, the flagship project of BRI that involves constructing infrastructure that reaches to Afghanistan. This comes as the former president of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai, said in an interview Saturday that China can play an important role in shaping Afghanistan’s future.
“Afghanistan, Pakistan and China are neighbors; we are connected geographically,” Karzai stated. “China plays a very important role, a significant role, in improving the relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan, and in making sure that a synchronized relationship is established between the two countries.”