Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 27 Share on Twitter 2 Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 4/29/19

The New Silk Roads reach the next level

By       (Page 1 of 2 pages)     (# of views)   No comments
Author 73066
Message Pepe Escobar
Become a Fan
  (184 fans)

From Asia Times

- Advertisement -

The Beijing leadership seems to be aware that transparency is key for the global success of BRI, which is now supported by over 120 states and territories

Vladimir Putin: .Belt and Road Forum. in Peking
Vladimir Putin: .Belt and Road Forum. in Peking
(Image by YouTube, Channel: RT Deutsch)
  Details   DMCA

The Belt and Road Forum in Beijing was a graphic demonstration of how tactical adjustments are essential to enhance the appeal of a complex overall strategy. Talk about a turbo-charged 4.0 version of the legendary Deng Xiaoping maxim "crossing the river while feeling the stones."

- Advertisement -

For all the somewhat straitjacket approach of Chinese official pronouncements, President Xi Jinping stressed a sort of "three musts" for the advance of the New Silk Roads, or Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) debt sustainability, protection of the environment (or "green growth"), and no tolerance for corruption.

Add to that a growing battle against trade protectionism, more bilateral free-trade deals, more financing or investments, cooperation on third-party markets, and even a plan to sell Silk Road bonds.

In his keynote speech, Xi stressed how multilateral cooperation on "six corridors and six channels serving multiple countries and ports" is all go. He was referring to BRI's six major connectivity corridors spanning Eurasia and the fact that BRI is still in its planning stage; implementation actually starts in 2021.

- Advertisement -

The devil, of course, is in the details on multiple Chinese promises further opening-up of the Chinese market to foreign investment; the possibility of majority equity in more industrial sectors; no more imposed technology transfers; more protection of intellectual property rights; and last but not least, no devaluation of the yuan.

And yet Beijing is learning fast. The final joint communique , emphasizing governance as much as economic development, was signed by Xi and 37 heads of state from Italy, Greece and Portugal to Singapore and Thailand, not to mention new members such as Luxembourg, Peru, Cyprus and Yemen.

BRI is now supported by no less than 126 states and territories, plus a host of international organizations. This is the new, truthful, realistic face of the "international community" way bigger, diversified and more representative than the G20.

The Beijing leadership seems to be aware that transparency is key for the global success of BRI. On the opening day of the forum, Finance Minister Liu Kun presented a 15-page debt sustainability framework based on similar standards applied by the Bretton Woods system the IMF and the World Bank.

And the governor of the People's Bank of China (PBOC), Yi Gang, stressed how long-term debt sustainability should be evaluated in relation to better infrastructure, better productivity, raising standards of living and reducing poverty. The PBOC has financed as much as $440 billion in BRI projects so far.

It's all about Russia-China

Supported by vast infrastructure-building know-how and cutting-edge technology, Beijing is willing to renegotiate virtually everything BRI-related, from bank loans to overall project costs, from Malaysia and Thailand high-speed rail to the finer points of the flagship China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), from physical infrastructure to the Digital Silk Road.

- Advertisement -

So much for US media hysteria over toxic "debt-trap diplomacy."

Moreover, the West, as usual, ignored what was the absolutely key takeaway of the BRI forum: the deepening, on all fronts, of the Russia-China strategic partnership. It's all here, in President Putin's speech.

Putin emphasized "harmonious and sustainable economic development and economic growth throughout the Eurasian space." He noted how BRI "rhymes with Russia's idea to establish a Greater Eurasian Partnership, a project designed to 'integrate integration frameworks,' and therefore to promote a closer alignment of various bilateral and multilateral integration processes that are currently underway in Eurasia."

Next Page  1  |  2

 

- Advertisement -

Valuable 4   Must Read 3   News 2  
Rate It | View Ratings

Pepe Escobar Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Pepe Escobar is an independent geopolitical analyst. He writes for RT, Sputnik and TomDispatch, and is a frequent contributor to websites and radio and TV shows ranging from the US to East Asia. He is the former roving correspondent for Asia (more...)
 

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

STAY IN THE KNOW
If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
Name
Email
   (Opens new browser window)
 

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

You Want War? Russia is Ready for War

Why Putin is driving Washington nuts

Why Qatar wants to invade Syria

All aboard the New Silk Road(s)

It was Putin's missile?

Where is Prince Bandar?

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

No comments