Wed, Aug 28, 2019 - Page 9 News List

Climate change turns Arctic into strategic, economic hotspot

Climate change turns Arctic into strategic, economic hotspot

By David Rising and Seth Borenstein  /  AP, TASIILAQ, Greenland

That has been the approach taken by China, which has had mixed success.

Greenland officials have visited China to look for investors, but Beijing’s interest has also provoked political unease.

In 2016, Denmark reversed plans to sell Groennedal, a former US naval base that the Danish military had used as its command center for Greenland after a Hong Kong company, General Nice Group, emerged as a bidder, Danish news outlet defencewatch.dk said.

Last year, then-US secretary of defense James Mattis successfully pressured Denmark not to let China bankroll three commercial airports on Greenland, over fears they could give Beijing a military foothold near Canada, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Beijing’s biggest Greenland-related investment to date is an ownership stake by a Chinese company in Australia-based Greenland Minerals, which plans to mine rare earths and uranium.

“People talk about China, but China can access Arctic resources through foreign investment,” Byers said. “And foreign investment is a lot cheaper than trying to conquer something.”

Additional reporting by Cathy Bussewitz, Joe McDonald, Frank Jordans, Vladimir Isachenkov, Rob Gillies, Ben Fox and Jan Olsen

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