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Maritime Silk Road to boost regional prosperity

Updated: Feb 14,2015 8:24 PM     Xinhua

BEIJING — Overseas experts have made positive comments on China’s 21st Century Maritime Silk Road initiative, saying it will promote the development of the countries along the route and boost regional prosperity.

Professor James Peck from New York University told reporters that the strategic 21st Century Maritime Silk Road initiative will exert an important influence on the economic development of Asia.

The initiative links countries along the road economically and culturally, he said, adding that the countries could share resources and achievements in trade, which will make Asia’s economy even more vibrant.

Peck also lauded China for its positive role in promoting global economic growth, saying China, as a major developing country, has continuously improved its international communication and cooperation skills.

John Wong, academic adviser to the East Asian Institute of the National University of Singapore, pointed out that China attaches more importance to interdependence in its external economic activities.

Meanwhile, he said that equality and mutual benefit, interdependence and common prosperity are the starting point of China’s Maritime Silk Road initiative.

Bambang Suryono, a senior Indonesian political analyst, said the 21st century is a maritime century and China’s Maritime Silk Road initiative shows its willingness to conduct peaceful cooperation with other countries in developing the ocean.

It is an inevitable choice for the world to build a platform for win-win cooperation under the current trend, he said, adding that the Maritime Silk Road provides the Asia-Pacific countries with an opportunity to strengthen dialogue and coordination in a bid to maximize common interests.

Richard Tan, vice secretary-general of Association of Indonesia-China Economic, Social and Cultural Cooperation, said the Maritime Silk Road initiative fully demonstrates China’s sincerity to strengthen cooperation with ASEAN countries to boost connectivity and set up a regional financial mechanism.

The initiative is an adjustment and upgrade of the current regional cooperation mechanism, which will create “a whole greater than the sum of the parts,” he said.

The 21st Century Maritime Silk Road initiative, proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2013, covers countries and regions with a total population of 4.4 billion and a total economic volume of $21 trillion, 63 percent and 29 percent respectively of the world’s total.

On Feb 11, a two-day international seminar on beefing up maritime trade infrastructure in Asia was opened in Quanzhou, a city in southeast China’s Fujian province.

Over 280 academics and experts from 30 countries attended the seminar, themed “collectively building the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road and creating a community of common destiny”, and discussed proposals on building the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road.

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