Why China wants Ukrainian farm land
This week China announced the largest leasing land: 3 million hectares of Ukrainian land. Or, simply 1/20 of all Ukraine. The deal will annually bring 2.6 billion to Ukraine for 50 years, that will lead to the prospect of a new type of colonialism, where rich countries will retrieve resources from poorer and all under the guise of economic transfer.
The next 50 years period (the period of the agreement of China — Ukraine relations) may also influence the policy of the country, when, for example, China will try to win support for a new trade policy, or against military action. Every day, the country conducts economic operations, perhaps more than the USA, which is one of the largest debtors of China. But Ukraine can become the greatest example of what happens when the lender will demand of the debtor fulfillment of its commands, that is a dictatorship.
China consumes about 20 percent of the food in the world, and it is not surprising, with its population of 1.3 billion people. But the country has only nine percent of the world’s agricultural land. For decades, the discrepancy was tolerable. China has found ways to increase their food with the help of an agrarian society.
Now, when China’s population continues to grow by rapid industrialization, the country has reached a deadlock. The population rate, it seems, is not sustainable. This is a common reality faced by industrialized countries. At a certain point in the process of development, countries are experiencing a great economic boom. Population increases, which causes a consumer demand. The increase of the housing needs of the people leads to the construction of houses, where crops would normally grow. And environmental changes, as a rule, lead to a restriction in food production.
South Korea, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates have all been in this situation for the past five years. They could use more farmers, but what they really need is more land. What’s the solution? Sure thing, to buy more land — and buy it from countries which either do not require this, or could use the money instead.
In 2008, the UAE purchased 324 hectares of land in Pakistan. After a year passed, South Korea paid almost twice as much for this amount of land in Sudan. Proposals such as this one are not losing.
The earth is from the nature – costs nothing. Therefore, the area where China will harvest in Ukraine, naturally, will not be used to nourish the future appetite of the Ukrainian people. China will also send away seeds and fertilizers, as well as start building of several vital infrastructure in the Crimea, an autonomous part of Ukraine.
According to research conducted in January, in the world between 0,75 % and 1.75% of farm land were transferred to foreign investors. And this is not just a business relationship.
The question is, how does the government of Ukraine think?