...However stepping back and looking at the bigger picture they have gone out into the world making inroads into other countries, in effect expanded their territory, [colonization in most cases] initially as a military position, and mostly maritime purchases.
This is most evident around the South Pacific Islands..but Africa, South America, Central America and parts of Europe.
They dominated maritime trade routes initially with their mighty shipping fleet, but now want an overland trade route established across Asia and up into Europe. An alternate plan is to cross the Bering Sea and down into Canada.
All of these plans presented as so called 'trade routes' to the world in reality are military moves.