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Chongqing: The Former Rustbelt City at the Heart of the World Economy

Chongqing is a massive industrial city in China’s heartland that many outsiders are unfamiliar with despite its enormous size. The city alone has a GDP of $386 billion, larger than both South Africa ($310 billion) and Egypt ($363 billion).

While the city has long been connected by rail to China’s major eastern coastal trading hubs in Shanghai, Tianjin, and Guangzhou, a new sea-land corridor from the south provides an opening for goods coming from Africa and the Indian Ocean basin to shave three weeks off the journey to the factories in Chongqing. Cobalt, lithium, and other industrial commodities can now arrive in the Port of Yangon and travel overland by rail directly to southwestern China.

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