STOCKHOLM - SIPRI has published today a new SIPRI Policy Paper that analyses the evolution of China’s foreign aid policy over the past seven decades.

China’s role in foreign aid and, more broadly, in development cooperation on the global stage has grown significantly since it began seven decades ago. Particularly in recent years, through such platforms as the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), China’s profile and engagement in global governance in foreign aid and related areas have been further enhanced. China’s ambition is to take a more proactive approach in foreign aid and move towards a model of international development cooperation by linking with the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and by including the BRI as a major platform to achieve key development goals.

This paper provides a timely analysis of the evolution of China’s foreign aid policy in the past seven decades with a particular focus on the developments since 2000. It discusses China’s development finance to Africa and the major sectors receiving Chinese aid. It also analyses recent trends of Chinese foreign aid and identifies some of the challenges that China faces as it becomes a major player in international development financing.

About the authors

Dr Jingdong Yuan (United States) is an Associate Senior Fellow at SIPRI.

Fei Su (China) is a Researcher with SIPRI’s China and Asia Security Programme.

Xuwan Ouyang (China) is an Intern with SIPRI’s China and Asia Security Programme.

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