The idea of the 21st century Silk Road Belt and Maritime Silk Road by China is shortly known as Belt and Road Initiative (BRI)and BRI was introduced by the president Xi Jinping of China in 2013.
Belt Road Initiative(BRI)
An innovative idea of China by reconstructing the historic Silk Road concept in collaboration with other countries of the world so that the economically weak countries may also flourish.
The idea is that connecting Asia Europe and Africa by land and water ways so that all may attain regional intergration, flourished trade and improvement in economic growth.
On contrary, many believe that, this initiative is done with the idea of China being the core of trade or businesses around the world and it’s economic flow is constant globally.
A brief note on the ancient Silk route is given below
Ancient Silk Route and how it helped China
The name silk route implies that China silk was very famous among the Western countries. This silk route that connected China to the Roman civilization was in use from 130 BC to 18th century. The Chinese traders used the silk route to sell their goods to the countries that were in the silk route. The silk route was about 6400 km long including Europe, India, many provinces in China, and many African European landmasses
A part of silk Road still exists connecting Pakistan and China. Not only silk, the silk road helped to spread many lifestyles, religions, culture, food habits through the ancient silk Road.
Why the ancient Silk Route dropped?
- The Roman Empire lost its power in Asia.
- The bubonic plague was considered to be brought through silk route.
- It took almost 2 years to travel through the other side via silk Road.
- Due to insecure traveling and threats to the goods and life of travellers many avoided silk Road.
- After many friendly kingdoms fell the silk route became less chosen one.
Smart moves and benefits of China by BRI
Meanwhile, this effort or idea of China is going to shape the 21st century’s global economy. By this initiative China will get a benefit of access to
- 60 % of world population
- 70 % of global GDP
- 75%of energy resources
Also there are other side projects related to the main initiative to impress the respective government to allow China to install their amenities in their country. These amenities will help in installing the modern maritime silk Road strong. Experts call this as Win-Win strategy. For example
- Chinese-UK rail link
- In Sri Lanka, the Magampura Mahinda Rajapaksha port built by Chinese companies and was funded by China. But Sri Lanka was unable to pay the debts, hence the port was leased for 99 years to China.
- By the same way on debt Maldives gave it’s Feydhoo Finholu island for a long term lease to China
The attitude of China with other countries is in the same way. It has never left even a small chance of any relationship with other countries and the China is clearly trying to become world super power
Silk Road Belt spots and BRI projects around the World
- New Eurasian land bridge
- China, Central Asia and west Asia corridor
- China Pakistan economic corridor
- North China to Russian far east corridor
- China and indochina peninsula corridor
Maritime Silk Road spots and BRI projects around the World
- Chinese ports like Guangdong.
- Hanoi, Jakarta, Singapore via Strait of Malacca
- Sri Lankan Colombo
- Male, capital of Maldives which is very near to India
- East African Mombasa
- Red Sea via Suez Canal
- Mediterranean sea via Haifa, Istanbul and Athens
- Trieste, the North Italian hub
- Rail connections to Central Europe and North Sea
Subsequently, by the win-win strategy, China has taken leases in parts of various countries to build China’s economic zones there. The lease details till today are as follows
- Gwadar Pakistan 40 years
- Kyaukpyu Myanmar 50 years
- Kuantan Malaysia 60 years
- Obock Djibouti 10 years
- Malacca Gateway 99 years
- Hambantota Srilanka 99 years
- Muara Brunei 60 years
Views on BRI project
Finally, these activities after thisthe BRI project announced in 2013, the Chinese president Xi Jinping has gained global attention all over the world. Additionally, he motive of the project may be to increase the economic efficiency of China and to stimulate global economy
But there are opposition for this project as well politically and from people side as well. Additionally many experts are appreciating the effort of China’s part in bringing up the world economy.
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