China's Ambitions for the Greater Mekon…

Driving out of the Wattay International Airport in Vientiane one sees a large billboard featuring the overseas campus of Suzhou University in China. In a coffee shop in Vientiane two Chinese businessmen talked about the prospect of a new venture to extract copper in northern Laos. Just across the border from China in Boten, a local Lao driver talks in Chinese about the trucks full of fruit from Thailand parked minutes away from the border checkpoint near the a Chinese-built casino ghost town that once ruled the area. And on the outskirts of Yunnan’s capital city of Kunming, China’s fourth largest airport behind Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou, Changshui International Airport, was opened in mid-2012.

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