Chapter 7. China's BRI Investments, Risks, and Opportunities in Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Over the past three decades, China has become a major
economic power with an increasingly global role
and agenda. Although its GDP growth has slowed to
an average of 7 percent annually, in 2010 the country
became the world’s second-largest economy and
largest exporter. Moreover, in 2015, China—with a
US$128 billion foreign direct investment (FDI) outflow—
became the second largest foreign direct investor
worldwide, behind the United States and on
a par with Japan. Today, China is no longer heavily
dependent on exporting goods and attracting foreign
investment. Rather, it has been actively making its
own investments abroad and strengthening “Chinese
brands” with high added values (often tech products).
One of the major tools facilitating China’s foreign
investment is the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
This paper aims to provide an in-depth analysis of the
foreign investment that is carried out within the BRI
framework, its motives and priorities, looking at both
the broad political context and two specific country
cases: Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. The case study
was carried out using an online survey of some 300
respondents from within the two countries’ young,
educated elite. Based on the results of this study, we
were able to elaborate the risks and opportunities
connected with BRI investment in Central Asia.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationChina's Belt and Road Initiative and its Impact on Central Asia
EditorsMarlene Laruelle
Place of PublicationWashington, D.C.
PublisherGeorge Washington University
Number of pages10
ISBN (Print)9780999621400
Publication statusPublished - 2018


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