Belt & Road: China’s Xi pitches for open trade and shared prosperity, pledges &100 billion more

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BEIJING: Unveiling his vision of “One Belt, and One Road,” a grand trans-regional connectivity project that seeks to link the four continents and encompass over 65 countries, China’s President Xi Jinping has made a robust pitch in the Chinese capital to the world to cooperate in his dream of shared prosperity.
Addressing the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing on May 14, the Chinese president pledged around US$113 billion in extra funding for OBOR. He said that China’s Silk Road Fund will increase funding by 100 billion yuan, Chinese banks will extend 300 billion yuan in overseas capital, the China Development Bank will pledge 250 billion yuan, and the Export and Import Bank of China will add 130 billion yuan in special loans to Belt and Road projects.
Key Highlights of China’s President Xi Jinping’s speech at Belt and Road Forum in Beijing on May 14.

“China’s Belt and Road Initiative is based on the historic roots of the Silk Road, it focuses on Asia, Europe and African continents, and is open to all friends.”
Two millennia ago, the ancient trade routes used to be open, tolerant and strove towards win-win cooperation. The modern world today, being more interconnected than ever, was in a position where difficulties could be resolved in many different ways.
“We are living in a world with constant challenges: The world economy needs new growth drivers, its development needs to be more balanced and universal, the wealth gap should be narrowed, while some regions are plagued with turbulence and terrorism,” Xi said. “Peace, development and governance are challenges for all human beings. This is what I keep thinking about.”
“History is the best teacher. The history [of the ancient Silk Road] showed us that we can move along with mutual respect and development and towards the future of happiness, peace and harmony if we bravely walk the first step.”
“The countries along the ancient Silk Road were once places with milk and honey, but now are full of turbulence, conflicts and crisis. Such conditions must be addressed. We must have mutual cooperation and a sustainable security outlook, try to tackle hot issues and insist on political resolution.”
China would work with the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the New Development Bank and the World Bank to support Belt and Road projects.
“We will not follow the old way of geopolitical games during the push for the Belt and Road Initiative, but create a new model of win-win and cooperation. It will not form a small group undermining stability, but is set to build a big family with harmonious co-existence.”
“China’s construction of the Belt and Road Initiative is not to make a new start, but to connect development strategies of different countries and complement each other’s advantages … China is willing to share its development experience with all the rest of the world, but we will not intervene into other nation’s internal affairs, export our social system and development model, nor force others to accept them.”
“A country’s opening-up is like the creation of butterfly from cocoon. It brings rebirth with short-term pain. We must orient the construction of Belt and Road Initiative on opening-up and try to solve problems concerning economic growth and balance.”

“We will build an open platform, defend and develop an open world economy, jointly create an environment good for opening-up and development, and push for a just, reasonable and transparent international trade and investment system so that production materials can circulate orderly, be allocated with high efficiency and markets are deeply integrated.”

Development is always the key to solve any problems. So, the construction of Belt and Road Initiative should focus on this fundamental issue of development, drive up growth potentials of participating countries and achieve the economic integration, interaction and sharing.”


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