JUST as the opening salvo of the Sino-US trade war was fired, the Malaysia government announced that it had halted a rail project which China was contracted to undertake. Though Malaysia had been mulling over the idea for quite some time, it remains to be seen whether the decision was influenced by merely the country's domestic political factors. That said, there are construction projects in Belt and Road countries that China has been commissioned to undertake, while China is also in talks with some countries over other projects. These projects are bound to be affected by the trade war. It is necessary for China to review its past practice of obtaining infrastructure contracts from those countries by offering favourable terms.