Lifting global economic collaboration
The Belt and Road Initiative brings a note of economic optimism to a world that’s beset by sluggish growth
of the world’s high-speed railway network. Therefore, China enjoys an advantage over developed economies when it comes to costs and the use of technologies for building such infrastructure facilities.
China is more than willing to share its experience and expertise with other countries in order to help them boost their economies. But it has to advertise its experience and expertise in infrastructure construction in order to attract other countries and ensure its own economy grows at a healthy rate. Such supplydemand partnerships have been embraced by other economies at such a pace that the Belt and Road Initiative has, in less than four years, expanded to Africa and even Latin America. In addition, a UN Security Council resolution has urged that efforts be made to implement the Belt and Road Initiative to boost regional cooperation, especially for the revival of Afghanistan’s economy.
In his keynote speech at the Belt and Road forum, President Xi Jinping made it clear that China is advancing the initiative without any intention of exporting its social system or development mode. China doesn’t intend to form any destabilizing groups, either. Instead, it wants to foster a harmonious family of economies.
Moreover, even though China proposed the Belt and Road Initiative, it is interested neither in imposing its view upon other countries nor in dominating the Belt and Road projects. China knows that such an unprecedented initiative has to be “consulted, built and shared” together. This is a major reason 29 heads of state and government participated in the Beijing forum, where every represented economy was a stakeholder.
As far as consultation is concerned, China intends to be an equal partner with other collaborators. To build together, it is ready to contribute to as well as learn from its partners. And to share together, China has no intention of dominating the process— rather, it seeks mutually beneficial results. Since Xi proposed the Belt and Road Initiative in 2013, China has been smoothing its discourse on how economic development can be used to make the world a better place. The success of the Beijing forum shows that China’s discourse has been well received.
This is especially important at a time when global economic growth is sluggish, and nationalist and protectionist sentiments in the US and some European countries pose a threat to globalization, especially because over-protectionist measures could lead to a currency, or even trade, conflict.
Amid the global economic gloom, the Belt and Road Initiative injects afresh the spirit of multilateral cooperation into the world economy and will create win-win opportunities, which could lead to a more vibrant regional and global economic recovery.