A Chinese state-owned firm is seeking a stake of up to 85 percent in Kyaukpyu, a strategically important deepwater port on the coast of Rakhine state, Myanmar. It is the latest acquisition in China’s Indian Ocean “String of Pearls” or “Maritime Silk Road,” a series of ports running westward from Malacca to Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Djibouti.
A consortium led by CITIC Group, which won the contract to develop the port at Kyaukpyu last year, would like to take 70 to 85 percent of the $7 billion facility, Reuters reports. The deal would give China control over an oil receiving terminal that feeds a cross-border pipeline to Yunnan province, bypassing the Strait of Malacca, the strategic chokepoint between the Indian Ocean and the Western Pacific. The long-delayed pipeline finally opened last month, connecting PetroChina's new refinery in Kunming with oil shipments arriving by tanker from the Middle East. It is expected to supply as much as six percent of China's crude imports.
Read the full story at MarEx