Along the jungle-covered mountains of Laos squads of Chinese engineers are drilling hundreds of tunnels and bridges to support a 260-mile railway – a $6bn (£4.7bn) project that will eventually connect eight Asian countries.
Chinese money is building power plants in Pakistan to address chronic electricity shortages – part of an expected $46bn worth of investment.
Chinese planners are mapping out train lines from Budapest to Belgrade Serbia – providing another artery for Chinese goods flowing into Europe through a Chinese-owned port in Greece.
The massive infrastructure projects – along with hundreds of others across Asia Africa and Europe form the backbone of China’s ambitious economic and geopolitical agenda.
President Xi Jinping of China is literally and figuratively forging ties – creating new markets for the country’s construction companies and exporting its model of state-led development in a quest to create deep economic connections and strong diplomatic relationships.