New IISCAL publication

China and Argentina: Investments, Energy and Sustainability. The Cauchari Solar Park Project

China became a major lender, investor and business partner of Argentina in the last decade. Bilateral financial cooperation has focused especially on the sectors of transport and fossil-fuel energy, but since 2016 Chinese investment ventured into the field of renewable energy.

This article analyzes the China-Argentina relationship and places particular emphasis on the Cauchari Solar Energy Park project. This project, while constituting the largest photovoltaic solar plant in Latin America and the Caribbean -financed and built by Chinese entities- also represents the most promising hope to promote the redirection of Chinese financing towards the development of clean energy in Argentina, and with possibilities to expand it to other countries in Latin America.

Given the urgency of climate change action, the sustainability of investments is an unavoidable issue that is already demanded by social movements at the global level, and that should be prioritized by financial entities and by recipient governments. An important lesson from the Cauchari Solar Park project is that the ability of recipient governments to produce public policies and alternative energy projects, not only cannot be ignored by Chinese banks; but on the contrary, it can be aligned with their interests.

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