The Geopolitical Factor of Belt and Road Initiative in Latin America


  • Miguel Angel Montoya Full time professor at the School of Business, Tecnológico de Monterrey, Mexico. Phd in Economics, Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain
  • Daniel Lemus Professor at the School of Government and Social Sciences, Guadalajara Campus, Tecnológico de Monterrey, Mexico. Ph.D. in Transpacific International Relations, University of Colima
  • Evodio Kaltenecker Professor at the School of Business of the Monterrey Institute of Technology, Campus Guadalajara, Mexico. Ph.D. in Strategy and Internationalization of Multinational Companies, University of São Paulo, Brazil.


In the context of Chinese growing influence in Latin America, the purpose of this paper is to analyze how geopolitical factors impact the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) implementation within the region. Specifically, this paper illuminates how Brazil and Mexico, the two largest economies in Latin America, have different predispositions towards their relationships with China. Through the review of secondary sources, this paper sets the background to analyze the geopolitical factor of the BRI in Latin America, which is complemented by the use of international databases to contrast how the US factor has molded the relationships between these countries. Finally, a comparative case study method is used to illustrate how geopolitics have influenced the Chinese investment possibilities in both economies. Although China's presence in Latin America through investments, trade, loans, and official development aid, has grown, we conclude that the United States influence is still a relevant factor to understand the differences between bilateral relationships amongst Brazil-China, and Mexico-China. This particular finding emphasizes the importance of geopolitics on BRI’s implementation in Latin America.


Geopolitics, Belt and Road Initiative, China, Brazil, Mexico


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