BEIJING — Britain sees great potential in China’s Belt and Road Initiative and is willing to deepen cooperation with China, said British Ambassador to China Barbara Woodward.
Barbara Woodward made the remarks during a press briefing held in Beijing ahead of British Prime Minister Theresa May’s three-day official visit to China starting on Jan 31.
“We see the Belt and Road Initiative as an initiative with great potential and we want to be part of it,” she said.
The ambassador gave an example of the progress made under the initiative.
“We were delighted when the first train from China came to London in January last year,” she said referring to the first freight train departing from East China’s Yiwu city in Zhejiang province and reaching Barking in East London on Jan 18, 2017.
With the train’s arrival, London became the 15th city in Europe added to the China-Europe freight train services.
While hailing such progress, the ambassador said that Britain expected to see more areas where both sides can work together in the future.
On the one hand, she said Britain seeks to collaborate with China in practical projects as British companies are keen to develop partnership with Chinese companies.
On the other hand, she said Britain is willing to share its financing experience and to establish close working relationships between the financial experts in London and people who are designing and developing projects along the Belt and Road.
She highlighted that Britain is a “natural partner” in the Belt and Road Initiative, echoing the remarks made by British Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond last May that “Britain, lying at the western end of the Belt and Road, is a natural partner in this endeavour”.
As for May’s official visit to China, the ambassador said she looks forward to deepening bilateral cooperation through her visit.