While globalization is suffering from setbacks due to uneven economic growth, the Belt and Road Initiative offers new momentum by creating more opportunities that can bring mutual benefits.
“The initiative is important in connecting countries and creating more opportunities for exchanges of goods and services, thus helping regional development,” Hans-Paul Burkner, chairman of the Boston Consulting Group, told Xinhua on the sidelines of ongoing Boao Forum for Asia (BFA) in Hainan, the southernmost province in China.
Not only China will become a beneficiary but also countries in Asia and beyond, leading to a “win-win” situation, Burkner said.
The Belt and Road Initiative was proposed by China in the hope of forming a trade and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe and Africa along ancient trade routes. It has won support from over 100 countries and international organizations, with the signing of nearly 50 inter-governmental agreements of cooperation.
The value of infrastructure projects rose 47 percent to nearly $500 billion in 66 countries and regions that fall under the initiative in 2016, according to accounting firm PwC.
The initiative has offered a new way to tackle the anti-globalization trend, according to BFA’s annual report on the development of emerging economies.
Globalization has played a vital role in boosting prosperity and reducing poverty and it is time to push it to a new level, according to Burkner.
“Now we need to continue globalization and usher it into the next phase, and the initiative will be significant to really connect more countries to the world economy,” Burkner said, adding that China’s efforts will generate new momentum.
While pushing forward the initiative, China has also vowed to open wider to the world with easier market access and equal treatment for foreign companies, moves to further integrate into the world economy.
China’s opening, especially in services, means fresh business opportunities for foreign investors, and in the same time more Chinese companies will become international, increasing their presence in rest of the world, Burkner said.