The Belt and Road Initiative
First announced by Chinese President Xi Jingping in September 2013, the Belt and Road Initiative (formerly ‘One Belt One Road’ (‘OBOR’; Yi Dai, Yi Lu; 一带一路)), now sets out China’s ambitious foreign policy objective for the 21st century. It embodies an integrated development framework consisting of a continental ‘Silk Road Economic Belt’ and littoral ‘Maritime Silk Road’. Through the guidance of these economic corridors it provides a comprehensive framework of regional cooperation and development programs spanning from China to Western Europe. In totality BRI provides a vision encompassing over 60 countries with a combined population exceeding 4 billion people throughout Central Asia, the Indian Ocean Littoral and Europe. Under the initiative, Beijing takes the lead in the cooperative promotion of local and trans-continental infrastructure development; policy coordination; trade facilitation; and cultural exchange. As a comprehensive, multi-tiered project, BRI builds on a series of multilateral and bilateral funding schemes and state policy loans to both public and private sector partners. OBOR sets out an ambitious vision with profound economic, political and social potential impact.
BRI sets out a grand vision. However, in order to successfully realize a project of such scale and ambition, a framework for effective policy development and topical expertise is indispensable. The Stockholm China Center at ISDP provides this framework. Recognising that the world is increasingly multi-polar, ISDP considers international engagement the only viable strategy and policy direction. The Belt and Road Initiative provides Europe with a unique opportunity from which to take up this challenge and become part of inclusive solutions across Eurasia and the Indian Ocean littoral. As a hub for China-oriented research, with extensive networks throughout the Central- and East Asian political environment, the Stockholm China Center at ISDP is the portal preparing Sino-European relations for the The Belt and Road era.
Amid Reports on Chinese Expansion of Bases, Sri Lanka Unveils SOP: Need for a Reality Check?
India has realized it cannot possibly balance China’s growing influence on its own, nor can it afford to have the U.S. leave the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) given China’s significant […]
China in Eurasia: Revisiting BRI amidst the Russia-Ukraine Crisis
This paper discusses China’s trade and connectivity plans under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in the Eurasian region and the impact of the Russian invasion of Ukraine on Chinese […]
Kenya and the Indo-Pacific: The Rationale for an “Outlook” and Why Kenya (and East Africa) Matters
This issue brief argues that Kenya should carefully consider promulgating an Indo-Pacific outlook given the seismic shifts in global distributions of power and the resulting great power rivalry. The future […]
Revitalizing INSTC: Analyzing Geopolitical Realignments and the China Factor
In recent years, the rise of Asia as the geoeconomic and geostrategic fulcrum has not only realigned global geopolitics but also reasserted the need for regional connectivity. For example, the […]
EU’s global gateway strategy and building a global consensus vis-a-vis BRI
Abstract: The Belt and Road Initiative paved the way for China to establish far-reaching trade relations and greater political influence across continents. Dominating the Indo-Pacific region by building up the […]
Belt and Road Initiative: China’s Lending Hands Come with Claws
Abstract: With the economic crisis unfolding in Sri Lanka, there is a renewed interest in better understanding and analyzing the Belt and Road Initiative to prevent nations from both falling […]