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24 April 2024

Chinese President stresses high-quality development of Belt and Road

Photo: AFP

By Wam

Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday announced a package of proposals to advance high-quality development of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) at a key forum widely considered a milestone in promoting win-win cooperation.

The international community should join hands to work out a "meticulous painting" of the BRI to continuously promote its high-quality development toward a bright future, Xi said in a keynote speech at the opening of the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation (BRF).

The principle of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits should be upheld, said Xi, stressing open, green and clean approaches, as well as goals of high-standard, livelihood-improving and sustainable development.

"The BRI will not become an exclusive club," Xi said as quoted by state news agency, Xinhua.

Proposed by Xi in 2013, the BRI has opened up new space for world economy with better-than-expected results. In less than six years, the BRI has been extended from Asia and Europe to Africa, Americas and Oceania. The collective action under the BRI is unprecedented in history.

"We should forge a global connectivity partnership to achieve common development and prosperity," Xi said. "As long as we work together to help each other, even if thousands of miles apart, we will certainly be able to find a mutually beneficial and win-win road."

Addressing B&R concerns, Xi announced a series of ambitious and concrete measures, including building infrastructure of high quality, sustainability, risk resilience, reasonable pricing, inclusiveness and accessibility.

China will also negotiate and sign high-standard free trade agreements with more countries and support massive personnel exchanges among B&R countries, according to Xi.

About 5,000 participants from more than 150 countries and 90 international organizations attended the event. Among them were nearly 40 heads of state and government.

So far, more than 150 countries and international organizations have signed BRI cooperation documents with China. From 2013 to 2018, the trade volume between China and other B&R countries surpassed 6 trillion U.S. dollars, and China's investment in B&R countries exceeds 90 billion dollars.