China’s rise and push for resources will bring a whole host of other issues to come with it. Given previous actions in Africa, one can get a glimpse of what is to possibly happen in a takeover of Latin America as a result in regards to human rights. This can also have a profound effect on agricultural prices and commodities as demand rises from feeding the world’s most populous nation. Militarily, China has also for some time expanded it’s relations in America’s neglected backyard.
Few were surprised when Venezuela announced a deal with China last week to restore 1.4 million acres of unproductive farmland across the oil-rich but impoverished South American nation.
China increasingly is buying farmland and agricultural companies in South America to feed its ever-growing population, currently estimated to be 1.34 billion.
The most important aspect of China’s agricultural investment in Latin America is that “it is a part of the increasing physical footprint of the People’s Republic of China that is just beginning to occur,” said Evan Ellis, an assistant professor at National Defense University in Washington.
Mr. Ellis said that “with the Chinese becoming mine owners, petroleum-field operators, factory managers and dam builders in Latin America,” China’s farming operations there “will immerse the Chinese, with their very different culture, in one of the most politically charged phenomena in the region – the relationship between the Latin American people and their land.”
Central to China’s rising agricultural-industrial complex are soybeans from Brazil and Argentina, millions of tons of which the Chinese are importing to feed cows and pigs to meet a growing demand for meat.
Full article: China plants bitter seeds in South American farmland (Washington Times)