China’s Belt-Road initiative to strengthen integration

Washington—China’s Belt and Road Initiative will establish a large Asia-Europe economic zone, providing opportunities for dozens of countries along the “Belt and Road” routes integrating into the global economy, a former World Bank official has said.
The initiative, proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2013, refers to the Silk Road Economic Belt that links China with Europe through central and western Asia by inland routes, and the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road connecting China with southeast Asia, Africa and Europe by sea routes.
“I think the main rationale (for such initiative) is to link Asia and Europe basically to one large economic zone,” Simeon Djankov, visiting fellow at the Washington-D.C. based Peterson Institute for International Economics and former chief economist on finance and private sector affairs at the World Bank, told Xinhua in a recent interview.
Djankov said the links between the Europe and Asia could be “significantly weakened” and some parts of Asia.—Xinhua

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