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一、经济学人杂志双语文章摘要

还没等这个机构有机会出问题,新冠疫情爆发了。返乡过年的中国专业工人被困在家乡。巴基斯坦政府不想看到参与CPEC项目的7.5万名巴基斯坦人被裁员,但也无力承担保住他们的工作的成本。该国经济正面临几十年来的首次衰退,以及又一次的国际收支危机。而自政府5月份放松封城规定以来,新冠病毒感染人数正在上升。汗正在竭力向所有债权国争取减免巴基斯坦的债务。

二、经济学人杂志双语文章中英对照翻译

A charged relationship 高压电关系

2020.8


Infrastructure investment in Pakistan reveals the limits of Chinese development aid
在巴基斯坦的基础设施投资揭示了中国发展援助的局限性 

经济学人双语杂志

WHEN XI JINPING launched his Belt and Road scheme of global development aid with Chinese characteristics, he needed a country to showcase it. Pakistan seemed the obvious choice. It was China’s only real ally, a security partner on a vulnerable flank. Meanwhile a new prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, and his business-friendly Pakistan Muslim League had just come to power pledging big infrastructure projects and an end to the country’s notorious brownouts. In 2015 the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was announced, involving promised sums that soon topped $60bn. This was a “game- and fate-changer” for the country, Mr Sharif crowed. What could possibly go wrong?
习近平启动具有中国特色的“一带一路”全球发展援助计划时,需要一个国家来作展示。巴基斯坦似乎是明摆着的选择。它是中国唯一真正的盟友,是其脆弱侧翼上的安全伙伴。而当时刚刚上台的总理纳瓦兹·谢里夫(Nawaz Sharif)和他亲商的巴基斯坦穆斯林联盟(Pakistan Muslim League)承诺要上马大型基础设施项目,终结该国臭名昭著的停电限电问题。2015年,中巴经济走廊(以下简称CPEC)宣布启动,承诺的投资金额很快就突破600亿美元。谢里夫夸口说这是巴基斯坦“改变游戏规则和命运的项目”。可能会出什么问题呢?
Quite a lot, as it happens. The latest evidence is a fresh report by a committee convened by Mr Sharif’s successor, Imran Khan, to look at problems in power generation. It accuses Chinese companies of “malpractices”, including inflating costs. The contractors of two coal-fired plants, at Port Qasim in Sindh province and Sahiwal in Punjab, are allegedly overcharging by $3bn. Construction costs alone were padded by over $200m, it claims.
事实是,问题可多了。最新的证据是一份新出炉的报告,由谢里夫的继任者伊姆兰·汗(Imran Khan)召集的一个委员会研究了发电行业的问题之后编写。报告指责中国公司存在“不当行为”,包括夸大成本。据称位于信德省(Sindh)的卡西姆港(Port Qasim)和旁遮普省(Punjab)的萨希瓦尔(Sahiwal)的两家火电厂的承包商多收了30亿美元。报告称,仅建设成本一项就虚报超过2亿美元。
Pakistan’s indebted power industry is notorious for sleaze, and the findings of the committee, which also faulted local contractors, should come as no surprise. Mr Khan himself campaigned for office by attacking corruption on CPEC projects. After he won the election in 2018, with a little help from Pakistan’s powerful generals, he thought to berate China into renegotiating terms and offering other financial help—he had, after all, inherited a full-blown balance-of-payments crisis. Yet Mr Khan’s first trip to Beijing was mortifying. He got nothing like the money he demanded. And China’s leaders scolded him for airing dirty laundry in public—a Belt and Road no-no.
巴基斯坦负债累累的电力行业乌烟瘴气众所周知,该委员会得出这样的调查结果(报告也指摘了本地承包商)应该并不让人意外。汗本人在竞选时打的就是大力抨击CPEC项目腐败这张牌。他从强势的巴基斯坦将军们那里得到少许帮助,在2018年赢得了大选,之后他想要通过严厉指责中国来迫使其重新谈判条件并提供其他金融援助——毕竟他接手的可是一个全面的国际收支危机。不过,汗的首次北京之行可谓屈辱。他拿到的钱远远不是他要的数目。而且中国领导人责备他家丑外扬——这可是“一带一路”的大忌。
By late last year things were looking better. Mr Khan had secured an IMF bail-out. The China relationship was back on track, albeit with a greatly pared-down CPEC. Gone were the proposals for industrial co-operation and most of a welter of special economic zones. But work had restarted on other projects. They included a port at Gwadar on the Arabian Sea and a railway from Peshawar to Karachi: that cost a ruinously expensive $8bn, but was too conspicuous a project to abandon. Reassuring both China and Pakistan’s top brass, a retired general was put in charge of a new CPEC authority. It was to serve as a one-stop shop and cut through Pakistan’s enterprise-choking red tape.
到去年年底,情况看起来有所好转。汗获得了国际货币基金组织(IMF)的救助。与中国的关系重回正轨,尽管CPEC的规模大幅缩减。关于工业合作的提议以及一大堆经济特区计划中的大部分都已不予考虑。但其他项目已经重新启动,包括阿拉伯海沿岸城市瓜达尔(Gwadar)的一个港口,还有从白沙瓦(Peshawar)到卡拉奇(Karachi)的铁路——这条铁路80亿美元的造价高得吓人,但关注度太高,无法放弃。为了让中巴双方的高层都安心,新设立的CPEC管理机构由一位退役将军负责。该机构旨在充当一站式窗口,简化巴基斯坦扼杀企业发展的官僚程序。
Even before the authority had a chance to fail, along came covid-19. Specialist Chinese workers were stuck in their hometowns celebrating the Chinese new year. The government hardly wants to see 75,000 Pakistani employees on CPEC projects laid off, but it cannot afford to keep them at work either. The economy faces its first recession in decades, and yet another balance-of-payments crisis. And since the government eased lockdown regulations in May, coronavirus infections are rising. Mr Khan is desperately pushing for debt relief from all Pakistan’s creditors.
还没等这个机构有机会出问题,新冠疫情爆发了。返乡过年的中国专业工人被困在家乡。巴基斯坦政府不想看到参与CPEC项目的7.5万名巴基斯坦人被裁员,但也无力承担保住他们的工作的成本。该国经济正面临几十年来的首次衰退,以及又一次的国际收支危机。而自政府5月份放松封城规定以来,新冠病毒感染人数正在上升。汗正在竭力向所有债权国争取减免巴基斯坦的债务。
The committee’s report, which the generals presumably approved, is part of the campaign. It raises the stakes with China, which must be appalled at the display of laundry just as America is loudly contending that Belt and Road is all about entrapping poor countries through debt. Yet the evidence of malpractice Mr Khan has revealed may give him leverage to seek better terms; a similar gambit worked for Malaysia last year. To save China’s face, Mr Khan’s government has postponed a corruption investigation. Instead, according to the Financial Times, it is asking to delay repayments for up to a decade.
委员会的报告是这项努力的一部分,事先想必是得到了将军们的首肯。这加大了对中国的筹码——在美国高调指称“一带一路”就是想用债务控制穷国之时,这般揭短必然令中国大为震惊。但汗揭露的有关不当行为的证据也许能帮他寻求更好的条件——去年马来西亚就用类似的招数达到了目的。为了保住中国的面子,汗的政府推迟了一项腐败调查。据《金融时报》报道,它转而要求将偿债期限延后十年。
More concessions are coming. In other words the CPEC game, as a prominent economic commentator, Khurram Husain, puts it, is still on. Yet it will be a much reduced one, with some projects stalled or slowed, and others abandoned. There will be some real benefits: brownouts in much of the country are a memory. But, says Andrew Small, author of a book on China and Pakistan, CPEC“will be defined by the things that might have happened but won’t”.
越来越多的让步将随之而来。换言之,用著名经济评论员库拉姆·侯赛因(Khurram Husain)的话说,CPEC游戏仍在继续。不过,它的规模将大大缩小,其中一些项目将被搁置或放缓,另一些被放弃。它将带来一些真实的益处:巴基斯坦大部分地区的缺电限电已成为历史。但是,一本关于中巴关系的书的作者安德鲁·斯莫(Andrew Small)说,CPEC“将由那些本可能发生却不会发生的事情来定义”。
Pakistan, for instance, will not stop lurching from one economic crisis to the next. Nor will it have the economic confidence to transform its paranoid relations with India. Above all, it will not serve as a model to the world of a new form of relations with a magnanimous China, in which mutual advances in security and economic development are forever blissfully intertwined.
例如,巴基斯坦不会停止从一个经济危机跌入另一个。它也不会有经济自信来改变自己与印度互相猜忌的关系。最重要的是,它不会成为这样一个全球典范:与一个慷慨大度的中国建立一种新型关系,双方在安全与经济发展上的进步永远幸福交缠,无忧无虑。