Center for Urban and Global Studies
On 3 December 2021, amid the global surge of the Omicron variant, the China-Laos Railway (CLR), under construction since 2016, launched its maiden run from and toward its two termini at Kunming, capital city of Yunnan province in south-western China, and Vientiane, capital city of Laos. In more ways than one, the CLR is an unprecedented cross-border rail project in terms of scale, length, connected places, construction type, and potentially massive regional impact. These features exemplify the growing influence of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) along its six large-scale economic corridors and their key sub-corridors. In this essay, I explore the connective effects of the CLR using combined evidence on its late construction and early operation to illustrate the BRI’s broader “corridor-ising” impact.
European Financial Review