Western concerns with China’s growing influence on maritime operations are reaching deep into European supply chains, says The Wall Street Journal. The Croatian government awarded a $3 billion, 50-year concession to build and operate a container terminal at the Port of Rijeka to Maersk-owned APM Terminals, but only after canceling without explanation a tender that had been given to three Chinese state-owned companies.
U.S. diplomacy, coupled with pressure from the European Union, helped block Chinese ambitions at the port.
The behind-the-scenes moves at the Adriatic port highlight the increasingly intertwined nature of geopolitics and global shipping, and the urgency of Washington’s efforts to block Beijing’s investments in strategic infrastructure, including ports and railways, energy grids and semiconductor plants.
Rijeka isn’t yet a major commercial force, but NATO has moved military equipment through the port and the U.S. Navy has used it for ship maintenance and repair.
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