Chinese state media scoffs at a recently passed infrastructure law that touts the Biden administration as a “once in a generation” investment, as a “weak imitation” of their country’s achievements.
The Global Times, a newspaper produced by the ruling Chinese Communist Party, criticized the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act in an editorial published Sunday.
“The bill is far from solving all of the US’s problems and giving the country enough vitality to compete with China in large-scale infrastructure projects,” the opinion article reads.
The infrastructure bill was passed by 228 against 206 in the House of Representatives last Friday. Thirteen Republicans opposed their party to support the legislation and helped them cross the finish line amid a handful of Democrat defectors.
The Senate voted 69-30 in August to pass the infrastructure bill, with 19 Republicans joining all Democrats.
The $1.2 trillion package includes $555 billion in new financing for roads, bridges, broadband and more over the next five years. The White House estimates that the investments will create an average of 2 million jobs a year.
The plan also invests $65 billion to rebuild the electrical grid, $55 billion to improve water infrastructure, $39 billion to improve public transportation and $25 billion to improve airports.
Chinese state media wrote that “it’s tantamount to a fairy tale to revive American competitiveness by relying purely on a stimulus bill.”
President Joe Biden celebrated the bill’s passage as “a monumental step forward” for the nation.
The legislation, Biden said, is “a one-time investment in a generation that will create millions of jobs by modernizing our infrastructure — our roads, our bridges, our broadband, a whole host of things — to turn the climate crisis into an opportunity.”
“And it puts us on the road to winning the 21st century economic competition that we face with China and other major countries and the rest of the world,” the president added.
The Biden administration is also working with Congressional Democrats to approve a larger spending package to expand the social safety net and tackle the climate crisis. The $1.75 trillion “Build Back Better” plan passed a major procedural hurdle on Saturday as House Democrats voted to go ahead and consider the sprawling social bill.
The Global Times editors said the Biden administration’s “sense of urgency” to invest in infrastructure stems from a sense of competition.
“Some US political elites arrogantly believe that the US should lead the world in all aspects for fear that China will surpass them in any way,” the paper wrote. “They are lost in their pride and arrogance.”
news week contacted the White House for comment.