Belt and Road can ‘solve global woes’: Global Times

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BEIJING (China) May 4 (APP): China’s One Belt and One Road initiative,
which takes the form of six “economic corridors” connecting China and other countries with infrastructure projects and investments, will benefit the economies of the participants and stabilize many regions, experts said.
Given that the slow improvements in transport connectivity and
infrastructure among different countries are a major obstacle to global economic recovery and cause conflicts and disputes, “the Belt and Road initiative will build infrastructure to bridge different economies and countries, and it can solve the global problems or at least stabilize many regions with economic growth,” Wang Yiwei, senior research fellow at the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies of the Renmin University of China told Global Times.
The ambitious initiative, comprising the Silk Road Economic Belt and the
21st-Century Maritime Silk Road, will contain six “economic corridors.
The Belt focuses on bringing together China, Central Asia, Russia and
Europe (the Baltics); linking China with the Persian Gulf and the Mediterranean Sea through Central Asia and West Asia; and connecting China with Southeast Asia, South Asia and the Indian Ocean.
The 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road is designed to go from China’s coast to Europe through the South China Sea and the Indian Ocean in one route, and from China’s coast through the South China Sea to the South Pacific in the other, said the document.
On land, the initiative will focus on jointly building a New Eurasian
Land Bridge and developing China-Mongolia-Russia, China-Central Asia-West Asia and China-Indochina Peninsula economic corridors by taking advantage of international transport routes, using key economic industrial parks as cooperation platforms.
At sea, the initiative will focus on jointly building secure and
efficient transport routes connecting major ports. The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor require closer cooperation among the concerned countries, said the document.
However, due to geopolitical reasons, such as strategic games between
major powers and sovereignty disputes between countries in some regions, there are obstacles to progress in the initiative, Lin Minwang, a professor at the Institute of International Studies of Fudan University, told the Global Times.
“As an important country in South Asia, India’s economy accounts for 80 percent in the region, so if New Delhi is reluctant to get involved in China’s development plan, other countries in the region will also be impacted when participating in the B&R initiative. That’s why the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor’s progress is very slow.”
India is concerned that port construction and economic corridors will
provide excuses for China to send its navy and increase military presence in the region, and India’s status in the region will be challenged, Lin said.