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Defying "One Belt, One Road": EU Says No to China's Global Leadership

19 Mai 2017

"Under the current worldwide framework, the USA is leading global organizations like the United Nations, the World Bank, and the worldwide Monetary Fund", read a commentary (link in Chinese) in Xiakedao, a WeChat account run by the People's Daily.

Chinese President Xi Jinping welcomed leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, Indonesian President Joko Widodo, Turkish President Recep Erdogan and Greek President Alexis Tspiras.

Other governments welcome Chinese investment in a region that the Asian Development Bank says needs to spend US$7 trillion this decade on ports, railways and other trade-related facilities to keep their economies growing.

India skipped the just-concluded Belt and Road forum in Beijing in opposition to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) that passes through Pakistan-administered Kashmir.

He said the initiative, pioneered by Chinese leader Xi Jinping gives developing countries space to have a say in the global economy, create jobs and prosperity.

The inclusive tone of China's Belt and Road push stands in stark contrast to US President Donald Trump's "America First" policy.

Xi addressed the leaders on the second day of the forum on his new Silk Road plan, a huge infrastructure project meant to revive ancient land and sea trade routes from Asia to Europe and Africa.

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The B&R is a grand economic cooperation and development plan open to everyone, and is aimed at improving infrastructure in countries along the B&R route, thus benefiting the local people, it said.

Next year marks the 15th anniversary of China-Asean strategic partnership, and Cambodia will host the second meeting of Lancang-Mekong Cooperation initiative.

Xi has already pledged more than $100 billion for China's development banks for infrastructure projects across Asia, Europe and Africa.

He said: "Under concerted efforts, we believe the Belt and Road can be built to be peaceful, thriving, pioneering, innovative, and civilised".

Xi urged global organisations, including the EU and the African Union, to sign up to his "Belt and Road" agenda, according to Chinese state news agency Xinhua.

The premier also proposed enhancing defence and law-enforcement cooperation and strengthening exchanges in areas including education, tourism, protection of historical relics, medicine and health. "It is not directed at any third party, not relevant to disputes over territorial sovereignty and does not affect China's position on the Kashmir issue", it said.