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China Comes Closer To the U.S. Shores In Belt & Road Deal With Cuba

China Comes Closer To the U.S. Shores In Belt & Road Deal With Cuba

China came closer to U.S. shores with an agreement it stroke with Cuba to work together to advance construction projects under Beijing’s contentious overseas development initiative, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

The BRI has landed several of the participating countries in the BRI with massive debt burdens, reports say but reaching out to Cuba is a sign that Beijing is teasing the U.S. in the Caribean.

On Dec. 26, the Chinese Embassy in Cuba posted the agreement on its website, stating that He Lifeng, the chairman of China’s top economic planning agency, the National Development and Reform Commission and Cuban Vice Prime Minister Ricardo Cabrisas had signed it two days earlier.

The deal is based on a memorandum of intent inked by the two countries in 2018 when Cuba committed to join the BRI.

According to the Agencia Cubana de Noticias news agency, the two countries agreed to collaborate on initiatives in a number of vital areas, including communications, education, health and biotechnology, science and technology, and tourism.

Cuba and the United States restored diplomatic relations on July 20, 2015. Relations had been severed in 1961 during the Cold War

For the United States, communist Cuba has long been a serious foreign policy problem. President Biden is the latest American leader to struggle with how to strike a balance between promoting democracy and improving bilateral relations.

For more than sixty years, the United States and Cuba have had a tense relationship stemming from Fidel Castro’s ouster of a US-backed government.

Now that Beijing is pushing its card to Cuba, there will be interesting geopolitical games at play.