Both the government of Israel and U.S. national security officials have expressed concerns as Chinese companies continue to invest and infiltrate Israeli strategic infrastructure.
Last month, a Chinese-led group China Harbor controlled by the Communist regime, paid $500 million, which is double its estimated valued, to buy a power station from the Israel Electric Corporation, according to The Jerusalem Report.
The overpriced deal is typical of Chinese corporations, which are ready to pay almost any price to win tenders and thus “prevent any real and fair competition,” read the report.
In the last 15 years, Chinese corporations have invested in projects worth nearly $15 billion, aiming at Israel’s largest companies across its economic spectrum: seaports, railroads, trains, airlines, energy, power stations, oil, and other minerals.
Now the Israeli security establishment is worried about the Chinese projects that are built near its Defense Ministry, General Staff, Shin Bet headquarters and the major port of Haifa. Israel’s navy, has its super secret submarines anchored in Haifa. This port also serves as a frequent port of call for the U.S. Navy’s Sixth Fleet.
A 2019 Rand Corporation report notes a variety of problems that the Israeli government is now aware of, including “China’s cyberespionage record; corruption allegations; the links between Chinese companies and the Chinese government; and the issue of having a foreign entity control major infrastructure, including infrastructure that might be integral to Israeli security.”
For the United States, a Chinese incursion into Israel, which is one of its major allies, is especially concerning.
“The Department of Defense is concerned about China’s desire to erode U.S. military advantages, as well as China’s push for access and basing, use of economics to intimidate through the One Belt One Road initiative, and technology and intellectual property theft, acquisition and penetration,” Michael Mulroy, the deputy assistant secretary of defense for the Middle East wrote to the Atlantic.
As Huawei operates in Israel, The U.S. defense official is also concerned that could create a back door to Chinese spying on sensitive national-security issues.
“Yet the investments continue, and despite U.S. concerns, the ultimate effect on U.S.-Israeli ties that both sides tout as unshakable may be muted,” reported the Atlantic.