President Xi Jinping called for joint efforts to build the Belt and Road into a road for peace, prosperity, openness, innovation and civilization on Sunday.
Xi made the remarks when delivering a keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the two-day Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation. More than 1,500 representatives across the world are attending the forum. The Belt and Road Initiative is "a project of the century" that will benefit people across the world, Xi said."Spanning thousands of miles and years, the ancient silk routes embody the spirit of peace and cooperation, openness and inclusiveness, mutual learning and mutual benefit," Xi told the audience."The Silk Road spirit has become a great heritage of human civilization," he added. In his speech, Xi announced to scale up financing support for the Belt and Road Initiative by contributing an additional 100 billion yuan ($14.5 billion) to the Silk Road Fund."The China Development Bank and the Export-Import Bank of China will set up special lending schemes respectively worth RMB 250 billion equivalent and RMB 130 billion equivalent to support Belt and Road cooperation on infrastructure, industrial capacity and financing," Xi said. The Belt and Road Initiative, put forward by Xi in 2013, aims to boost interconnection and trade between Asia and the rest of the worldA total of 29 foreign heads of state and government leaders are attending the forum, including Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Other delegates include officials, entrepreneurs, financiers and journalists from over 130 countries, and representatives of key international organizations, such as UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, and Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde.
The opening ceremony of the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation is held in the National Convention Center in Beijing on May 14, 2017. [Photo/Xinhua]
Belt and Road should be road of opening upPresident Xi Jinping said the Belt and Road Initiative should be an open one that will achieve both economic growth and balanced development."We should build an open platform of cooperation and uphold and grow an open world economy," Xi said while delivering a keynote speech at the opening of the two-day Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing. He compared a country's opening up to the "struggle of a chrysalis breaking free from its cocoon", which has short-term pains but creates a new life."We should jointly create an environment that will facilitate opening up and development, establish a fair, equitable and transparent system of international trade and investment rules and boost the orderly flow of production factors, efficient resources allocation and full market integration," he said. China welcomes efforts made by other countries to grow open economies, participate in global governance and provide public goods, he said."Together we can build a broad community of shared interests," he said. President Xi Jinping said the Belt and Road Initiative focuses on the Asian, European and African countries, but is also open to all other countries. Xi said in pursuing the Belt and Road Initiative, China has no intention to form a small group detrimental to stability."What we hope to create is a big family of harmonious co-existence," Xi said. Pursuit of the initiative will not resort to outdated geopolitical maneuvering, he said. "What we hope to achieve is a new model of win-win cooperation."Xi also called for upholding the multilateral trading regime, advancing free trade areas and promoting liberalization and facilitation of trade and investment.
China involved in major Belt and Road connectivity projectsChina has engaged in the construction of several major projects to improve infrastructure connectivity under the Belt and Road Initiative, President Xi Jinping said. China, in cooperation with relevant countries, has accelerated the building of Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway, China-Laos railway, Addis Ababa-Djibouti railway and Hungary-Serbia railway, and upgraded Gwadar and Piraeus ports. A large number of connectivity projects are also in the pipeline, Xi said. He noted that a multi-dimensional infrastructure network is taking shape, underpinned by economic corridors such as China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, China-Mongolia-Russia Economic Corridor and the New Eurasian Continental Bridge. The network features land-sea-air transportation routes and information expressway and is supported by major railway, port and pipeline projects, Xi said. China will set up a liaison office for the follow-up activities of the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, said Xi. Xi urged strengthening international counter-corruption cooperation so that the Belt and Road will be a road with high ethical standards. China to contribute additional 100 billion yuan to Silk Road FundChina will contribute an additional 100 billion yuan (about $14.5 billion) to the Silk Road Fund, said President Xi Jinping. China encourages financial institutions to conduct overseas RMB fund business with an estimated amount of 300 billion yuan (about $43.5 billion). China will provide assistance worth 60 billion yuan ($8.7 billion) to developing countries and international organizations participating in the Belt and Road Initiative to launch more projects to improve people's well-being, said President Xi Jinping. China to set up 50 joint laboratories along B&RChina will set up 50 joint laboratories with countries participating in the Belt and Road Initiative to enhance cooperation on innovation, President Xi Jinping said."We will launch the Belt and Road Science, Technology and Innovation Cooperation Action Plan," Xi said. The action plan consists of the Science and Technology People-to-People Exchange Initiative, the Joint Laboratory Initiative, the Science Park Cooperation Initiative and the Technology Transfer Initiative. In the next five years, China will offer young foreign scientists 2,500 short-term research visits to China and train 5,000 foreign scientists, engineers and managers. China will also set up a big data service platform on ecological and environmental protection, and proposes the establishment of an international coalition for green development on the Belt and Road and will provide support to related countries in adapting to climate change. The Belt and Road Initiative aims at building a trade and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe and Africa along ancient trade routes. To build Belt and Road into road for peace, prosperityPresident Xi Jinping said the Belt and Road should be built into a road for peace, as the pursuit of the initiative requires a peaceful and stable environment. "The ancient silk routes thrived in times of peace, but lost vigor in times of war. The pursuit of the Belt and Road Initiative requires a peaceful and stable environment," said Xi. "We should foster a new type of international relations featuring win-win cooperation; and we should forge partnerships of dialogue with no confrontation and of friendship rather than alliance," he said. All countries should respect each other's sovereignty, dignity and territorial integrity, each other's development paths and social systems, and each other's core interests and major concerns, said Xi. "Some regions along the ancient Silk Road used to be a land of milk and honey. Yet today, these places are often associated with conflict, turbulence, crisis and challenge. Such state of affairs should not be allowed to continue," said Xi. He called for fostering the vision of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security, and creating a security environment built and shared by all. Xi also urged the Belt and Road to be built into a road of prosperity." In pursuing the Belt and Road Initiative, we should focus on the fundamental issue of development, release the growth potential of various countries and achieve economic integration and interconnected development and deliver benefits to all," he said. He said, "We should establish a stable and sustainable financial safeguard system that keeps risks under control, create new models of investment and financing, encourage greater cooperation between government and private capital and build a diversified financing system and a multi-tiered capital market. "Stressing infrastructure connectivity, Xi called for promoting land, maritime, air and cyberspace connectivity, focusing on key passageways, cities and projects, and connecting networks of highways, railways and sea ports.
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