Published: Tue, May 16, 2017
World Media | By Joan Schultz

China: Xi invites all to benefit from new Silk Road schemes

China: Xi invites all to benefit from new Silk Road schemes

Among others, the initiative seeks to build a network of infrastructure connecting China to Asia, Europe and Africa in the form of highways, bridges, sea ports and industrial parks.

In this photo released by Xinhua News Agency, Chinese President Xi Jinping, center, and countries' leaders and delegates attending the Belt and Road Forum pose for a group photo on stage at the China National Convention Center in Beijing, Sunday, May 14, 2017.

CHINA called yesterday for closer worldwide co-operation as President Xi Jinping pledged more than £75 billion for the "Belt and Road" economic scheme.

In the communique, dated May 8, China said it welcomed South America's participation in the initiative, the basis of which covers Asia, Africa and Europe.

The countries agreed that "we stand for enhancing global cooperation including the Belt and Road Initiative and various development strategies".

"Development has become more uneven not to mention the other challenges that overshadow the world economy such as wars, conflicts, terrorism and a massive flow of refugees and migrants", Xi told the leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin and Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, at the meeting. We admire and commend China's vision and ingenuity in developing corridors across regions; in building supportive financial institutions such as the Silk Road Fund and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank; and above all, in launching China Railway Express trains that construct a new bridge on the Eurasian landmass, he added. At the same time, he praised the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which violates Indian sovereignty as a "flagship" project of BRI. "This cooperation model would be beneficial for everyone", Erdogan said at the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation earlier in the day", Erdogan was quoted by Sputnik News as saying.

The project " a belt road" is the reflection of our quest for a common development.

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As a result of the meeting, financial authorities of the participating countries signed the document "Belt and Road Financing Guidelines".

The Silk Road initiative, first proposed by Xi in 2013, is also viewed as a counterweight to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a regional trade pact that excludes China.

"Trade is the important engine of economic development", Mr Xi said at a summit of world leaders in Beijing. "Connectivity projects must be pursued in a manner that respects sovereignty and territorial integrity", said the Ministry of External Affairs.

"We will cooperate on the areas where our interests converge", Philippine Ambassador in China, Jose Santiago Sta.

Leaders from 29 countries attended the Belt and Road forum, as well as the heads of the United Nations, International Monetary Fund and World Bank.

"We endeavor to promote a universal, rules-based, open, non-discriminatory and equitable multilateral trading system with WTO at its core", the statement said.

Xi said China would host the second Belt and Road Forum in 2019.

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