Zhang Yesui, spokesperson for the first session of the 13th National People’s Congress (NPC), confirmed that the Belt and Road Initiative has yielded fruitful results during the past five years. According to Zhang: “This year marks the fifth anniversary of the Belt and Road Initiative proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping. Thanks to joint efforts from all parties, this initiative is being turned into actions from a concept, and being translated into reality from a vision”.
Zhang also stressed that the most obvious results are: greater infrastructure connectivity and a strengthening of cooperation mechanisms. In fact, the aim of the initiative is not geostrategic, but that of stimulating cooperation. “To say that the Belt and Road Initiative is a geo-strategic tool, in my view, this is a misinterpretation of the initiative” Zhang said.
The Belt and Road Initiative is focuses on connectivity and aims at achieving win-win outcome, not only for China, but also for all countries. Zhang said: “Being an open and inclusive platform, it doesn’t exclude or target any country, but opens to all those who are interested”.
Another challenge that the Belt and Road Initiative must overcome, it’s the legal one. Zhang Yesui assure that to provide strong legal support, the NPC Standing Committee has made decisions to ratify treaties and agreements signed between China and countries along the Belt and Road routes. “It is natural for the initiative to face challenges in its early stage” said Zhang.
The Belt and Road Initiative is open to the collaboration of several parties and China welcomes all parties to work together to pursue shared benefits through dialogue and collaboration. The only ones who may be left out of this great project are Australia, US, India and Japan, and these four countries are talking about establishing a joint regional infrastructure scheme as an alternative to China’s project.