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Backgrounder: How China is Consolidating Oil and Gas Supplies in the Middle East

Workers building a school in the Iraqi city of Nasiriyah, as part of an oil-for-infrastructure deal with China. Image: Asaad Niazi / AFP

Amid rising geopolitical tensions with the United States, China is moving to tighten its control over key routes that supply it with oil and liquid natural gas.

Anxiety about the United States and its allies’ ability to block shipping at critical geographical ‘choke points’ has long influenced China’s building of alternative transport routes through the BRI.

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