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This authoritarian period saw the Maldives accept highly expensive infrastructure projects as part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative and even sign a free trade agreement with Beijing.

Is the above sentence correct with respect to the words in bold? I think the verb tense used here accept, sign is incorrect.

Still I am confused about using present continuous or past tense in the above sentence. Please help me with correct construction.

This authoritarian period saw the Maldives (accept/accepted/accepting) highly expensive infrastructure projects as part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative and even (sign/signed/signing) a free trade agreement with Beijing.

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The original sentence is correct - it is using the bare infinitive form of the verbs (the infinitive minus the word to). It is also correct to use accepting/signing, although the emphasis is slightly different (see below). It is not correct to use accepted/signed.

Many verbs of perception follow this pattern: hear, see, notice, watch, etc., where the following verb takes either the bare infinitive or the -ing form. When the bare infinitive is used, it emphasizes the entire completed action, while using the -ing form emphasizes the action in progress.

I saw him sit on the chair. [bare infinitive: I saw the complete action of him sitting down onto the chair.]

I saw him sitting on the chair. [ -ing form: I saw him while he was continuously seated on the chair.]

*I saw him sat on the chair. [Incorrect - you cannot use the simple past in this construction.]

In your quoted example, the emphasis is properly on the complete actions of accepting and signing, so the bare infinitive accept/sign is used.

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