BBC Chinese recently interviewed a Panamanian lawyer, Berta Thayer, about her view on the new book, China’s Silent Army. It was written by two Spanish journalists, who documented the unprecedented growth of China’s economic investment in the developing world and its impact at the local level.
According to the United Nations, in 2001, China’s investment in Latin America was less than one US$1 billion, while the figure grew to 44 billion in 2010.
For example, according to Thayer, in Panama, about one fifth of its 3.3 million population is either ethnic Chinese or of Chinese descent. China is already the second largest client of the Panama Canal, next to the U.S. China is also the largest supplier in Panama’s Colon Free Zone, whose annual trade volume amounts to US$5 billion.
Source: BBC Chinese, February 1, 2013