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The Challenges Facing China’s Belt And Road Initiative

By DIIS - Danish Institute for International Studies

China’s Belt and Road Initiative remains a grandiose and abstract wish list rather than a coherent blueprint of interconnected international investments. Once it is set into motion many of the infrastructure projects will encounter financial uncertainties as well as political and security risks.

China’s “Belt and Road Initiative” is President Xi Jinping’s signature foreign policy initiative. First announced in 2013, the land-based “Silk Road Economic Belt” and its maritime twin, the “21st Century Maritime Silk Road” are ambitious plans aimed at placing China at the heart of regional trade networks and restoring it to a prominent geopolitical position in Asia. The combined Belt and Road envisage new transport infrastructure, industrial corridors, power lines, railways, ports and trade routes that will enable a two-way flow of goods, people and ideas that stretches from China to the Middle East and Europe……


  • Western governments should engage China on global issues in order to shape rules jointly, rather than attempting to socialize Beijing or fearing newly created institutions.
  • Western governments should engage Beijing in specifying how the Belt and Road Initiative will advance the interests of potential foreign partners.
  • China and the international community can draw lessons on political and security risk, and labor and environment issues, from Chinese overseas investments in the past two decades……

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