China’s High-Speed Rail, What a Joke! Tofu-Dreg Projects With Nearly $1 Trillion in Debt

China’s High-Speed Rail, What a Joke! Tofu-Dreg Projects With Nearly $1 Trillion in Debt

China’s High-Speed Rail, What a Joke! Tofu-Dreg Projects With Nearly $1 Trillion in Debt

Many of China's large-scale infrastructure projects, due to quality concerns, are colloquially dubbed as "tofu-dreg projects." Notably, some are high-speed rail initiatives managed by major state-owned enterprises, such as divisions in China Construction or China Railway, operating under a principal contracting system. Yet, a prevailing practice among these primary contractors is to retain half of the allocated funds upon winning the bid. Subsequently, the project undergoes a series of subcontracts, which can result in the actual construction teams receiving a sum possibly lower than half of the initially stipulated budget.