Databases for the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI)

The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has remained vague in many aspects, including availability of data.

We analyzed a number of data sources and databases that are relevant for the BRI. On this site we provide an overview of relevant data sources. While it is indeed true that there is no “master” database, much data can be found through a variety of sources. The data include:

Financial and economic data

  • Debt of Belt and Road countries
  • Bilateral debt data of China with Belt and Road countries
  • Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) aggregate data for the Belt and Road Initiative
  • Bilateral project finance data (overseas direct investment – ODA) for Chinese investments including in Belt and Road countries
  • Export and import data between Belt and Road countries and China

Trade facilitation information

  • Trade agreements with China
  • Overview of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for BRI countries

Ecological and environmental data for a green BRI

  • Fossil fuel financing data Belt and Road countries
  • Climate risks of Belt and Road countries
  • Climate emissions Belt and Road countries
  • Biodiversity and Biodiversity Risks of Belt and Road countries

The table gives an overview and short description of the databases and provides links. Please feel free to reach out to [email protected] should you know a database that should be included in the list.

Data typeSourceDescriptionLevel of analysisGeographyTimeframeWebsiteQuality (5=great and downloadable data, 1=incomplete)
Bilateral contract volumesCARI/China StatisticsFinancial value of contracts bilateralAfrica1998-2017Link3
Bilateral Investment Treaties (BIT)UNCTADinvestment treaties agreementsbilateralWorld1980-2019Link4
Biodiversity wildlife camera trap recordsWildlife Insights, Googlewildlife camera trap records using AI to map health of wildlife speciesanimal species, countriesWorldsince 1990Link5
Blacklisted projects and organizations in the BRI (in Chinese)China Social Organizations 中国社会组织overview of blacklisted projects and organizations that pretend to be BRI but are notproject, organizationBRILink
BRI connectivityICBCsuperficial data on connectivitycountryBRILink1
BRI countriesBRI Project BlogMoUsbilateralWorldsince 2013Link3
BRI country listOfficial list of BRI countries Chinese list of BRI countriesBRILink3
BRI Environmental Big Data PlatformBRI Environmental Big Data Platforma collection of data from BRI countries, which is mostly copied from other data sources. not downloadable.countryBRI varyingLink2
BRI projectsYi Dai Yi Lu 一带一路some project descriptionsproject levelBRIvaryingLink3
BRI projectsBRI Project Bloggeneral project descriptionbilateralBRI2015-2019Link5
Carbon pricing initiativesWorld Bank Carbon Pricing databasedatabase containing carbon pricing and emission traditing initiatives (ETS) implemented, proposedcountry, sub-nationalWorldLink5
Case studies on climate policy implementation IDFC Climate Mainstreaming Databasea number of policies and case studies on how global finance institutions implement IDFC’s 5 voluntary principles financial institutionsWorldLink4
China Investment TrackerAmerican Enterprise InstituteData on Chinese investment in the world with a value of >100 million USDbilateralWorld2009-2019Link5
China’s FDIChina Statistical BureauFDI stock, FDI flowbilateralWorld1980-2017Link5
Climate Action TrackerClimate Action Trackerprovides information on country emissions and sectors around the World also with integration of NDC targetscountry, sectorWorldsince 1990Link5
Climate Finance DataUNFCCC Climate Finance Data PortalData and information on activities funded in developing countries to implement the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC); tracks the Financial Mechanism of the Convention and informs the intergovernmental process under the UNFCCC and relevant stakeholders on the mobilization of resources to support developing countries in the implementation of adaptation and mitigation projects and other activities under the, bilateral, financing institutions (particularly development finance institutions, WorldLink5
Climate lawsLSE climate laws databasean overview of global climate laws and climate-related litigation casescountry, sectorWorldLink5
Climate RiskGermanwatchFinancial losses due to extreme wheather eventscountryWorld2010-19Link4
CO2 emissionsIEAdetailed CO2 emission datacountryWorld1971-2015Link4
Coal financingBanktrackCoal finance, banks, locations, projectsbilateral, projectsWorldLink4
Country dataWorld Bank Data Bankdetailed data on thousands of country indicatorscountyWorld1970-2018Link5
Country overviewsBRI Statsgeneral overviews of economic indicatorscountryWorldvaryingLink2
DebtIMFprivate debt, public debt, gross national debtcountryWorld1980-2017Link5
DebtCARIdetailed databilateralAfrica2000-2017Link5
DebtWorld Bankdetailed debt statisticscountryWorld1960-2017Link5
DebtBoston Universitygeneral debt including lender, use of funds, amountbilateralLatin America2005-2018Link5
Energy financeBoston Universityenergy sources, lenders, energy subsectorsbilateralWorld2000-2018Link4
Environmental performanceYale EPI24 performance indicators across 10 issue categoriescountryWorld2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2018Link3
Environmental provisions in trade agreementsDIE TREND TRade and ENvironment Database analyzing how environmental provisions are part of bilateral or multilateral trade agreementscountryWorld1945-2016Link5
ExportsChina Statistical BureaubilateralbilateralWorld1980-2017Link4
External Development Finance StatisticsOECD DAC detailed data that capture OECD development finance statistics and give an integrated picture of both bilateral and multilateral climate-related external development finance, bilateralWorld, OECD DACsince 2000Link5
FDICARIdetailed databilateralAfrica2000-2017Link5
Financial institutions restricting coal fundingInstitute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA)list of financial institutions that stop or restrict funding coal, including the year of announcementfinancial institutionWorldLink5
Fossil fuels financingRainforest Action Networkdifferent types of fossil fues financingbanksWorldLink4
GHG emissionsClimatewatchoverview and data on country`s emissions, NDCs etc.countryWorld1990-2016Link4
Global Solar Atlasi.a. World Bankdetailed and downloadable (GIS) maps of solar energy potentialGISWorldLink5
Global Wind Atlasi.a. World Bankdetailed and downloadable (GIS) maps on global wind patterns for wind power generationGISWorldLink5
Green financial marketsGGFIdepth and quality of marketsstock marketsworld’s major stock markets2015-2018Link3
Green financial measures, policies, standards and codesGreen Finance Policiescounting close to 400 policy documents for green finance (e.g. codes, laws, taxonomies, regulation), sortable by country, focus areas, asset class etc.countryWorldrel=”noopener” target=”_blank”>Link5
InvestmentAPECFDI, exportsbilateralAPECLink3
Investment project databaseChinese Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM)some infos on projectsprojectChina to the WorldLink3
Investment project database CSIS – Reconnecting Asiasome infos on projectsprojectWorld, BRILink5
Multiple platforms and tools for green economyGreen Finance Platformdatabase of multiple tools and databases for green economy, green finance etc.databasesmultigranularLink5
NDC good policy practicesNDC Partnership good practices databaseDepository of good practices and lessons learned from countries that have overcome obstacles and where climate action is being effectively designed and, sectorsWorldsince 2015Link4
NDC nationally defined contributions trackerDIE NDC Explorerproviding country analysis of nationally defined contributions commitments countryWorld since 2015Link5
Power plantsRIOTdescription of projectprojectWorldLink4
Project financeAidDatadetailed government finance data for projectsbilateralAfrica, Middle East, Asia, Pacific, Latin America, Carribean, Eastern Europe, Central Europe2000-2014Link5
Renewable energy dataIRENAdetailed data on energy capacity and generation, energy balances, finance and investment, costs, policies…countryWorld2009-2018Link5
Renewable energy investmentsClimatescope Bloomberg New Energy Finance BloombergNEFcross-border new energy projects with investment volumes, investor country, recipient country, type of investor country, energy sectorWorld (bilateral)2009-2018Link4 (non-downloadable)
Terrestrial BiodiversityWorld Bankdetailed database with animal counts, endemicity score etc.biodiversity indicators, e.g. total counts of animal prevalence SubnationalLink5
TradeUN Comtradedetailed bilateral trade databilateral, country, sectorWorldsince 1962Link
TradeCARIdetailed databilateralAfrica2000-2017Link5
Trade agreementsAsiapediaTrade agreementsbilateralWorldLink3
Transport dataWorld Bankimpact on trading cost and shipment time of BRI transport projectsmunicipalBRILink4
WRI’s Dataset overviewWRI Dataset overviewa number of datasets published by WRI, including global power plants, palm oil, biodiversity areas, ocean and coral reef bleaching, country, sectorWorldvaryingLink5