China's 4 Most Wasteful Infrastructure Projects of 2012 | China Commentary |
Propaganda theme parks, faux-Manhattan skylines, and more.


While economists began the year feeling bearish about China’s slowing growth, they have perked up about the nation’s prospects since the government confirmed it would continue with stimulus policies it began in 2008. There has been no major announcement of a multi-trilllion dollar stimulus package this year, but all the signs are that Beijing is pressing its foot down hard on the pedal to kickstart job creation and boost GDP growth. Here is one rundown of this year’s ongoingroad, rail and subway projects.


The problem with construction for its own sake is that it can create waste, as well as very high debt andpossibly the next global credit crisis. China has been building ghost towns for years, and journalists have already written a lot on well-established empty cities such as Ordos in Inner Mongolia andChenggong, in the southwestern province of Kunming.


Nonetheless, here are 2012′s most eyebrow-raising developments.


1. The $4.8 billion propaganda theme park in Tibet

2. “Manhattan” in Tianjin.

3. All the new aluminum smelters

4. The $250,000, Chinese-built, empty apartments in Angola.