Commentary on Political Economy

Wednesday, 2 February 2022


China Fortifies Its Borders With a 'Southern Great Wall,' Citing Covid-19

Barbed wire, lights anda cameras spring up, changing life for locals and making tradeu cumbersome

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A fence China has built along its border with Vietnam.

An extensive buildup of

barriers along China's 3,000-mile southern border is under way, according to public documents, official statements and interviews with residents, ostensibly to battle Covid-19 but with likely long-lasting ramifications on trade and travel.

The small Chinese city of Ruili, in the far south next to Myanmar, has seen a major construction project in the past two years. It is a border fence equipped with barbed wire, surveillance cameras and sensors.

Farther east, along China's border with Vietnam, a

up abruptly last year. It stops Vietnamese locals


The avowed purpose is to

12-foot-high fence went from heading to Chinese villages to harvest corn or sell medicinal herbs, and it looks like a prison, said Sung A Ho, a hotelier in Vietnam's mountainous Lao Cai.

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