The report submitted to the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China on Oct 16 said that as a collaborative endeavor, the Belt and Road Initiative has been welcomed by the international community both as a public good and a cooperation platform, and that China will promote the high-quality development of the initiative.
As such, the initiative is expected to be further promoted as part of China's opening-up policy and play an ever greater role on the global stage.
As a rising world power, China is more willing and capable of providing public goods for global development, and the Belt and Road Initiative, as a medium of providing those public goods, will play a more important role in five areas.
First, the Belt and Road Initiative aims to promote connectivity across the world, and many countries consider connectivity and infrastructure development as vital drivers of economic recovery in the post-pandemic era. So the initiative will especially focus on connectivity.
Second, cooperation and exchanges under the Belt and Road Initiative framework have given rise to new technologies, new forms of businesses and new models of trade. And Belt and Road projects will create both opportunities and challenges which have to be cashed in on and overcome through new rules and mechanisms, because the existing global multilateral mechanisms cannot provide full support for the Belt and Road projects.
Third, a large number of seminars, exhibitions, expos and summits on the Belt and Road Initiative will be held globally, helping boost economic development and financial cooperation.
Fourth, the integration of the Belt and Road Initiative and various industries will give rise to new forms of business.
And fifth, the Belt and Road Initiative will propose new plans and projects to drive global economic recovery in the post-pandemic era.
The initiative, which aims to promote global economic cooperation and improve connectivity, follows the principle of realizing shared growth through collaboration, cooperation and mutual consent, contributing to global governance and helping build a community with a shared future.
In order to expand the cooperation area of the Belt and Road Initiative, China will continue to promote policy coordination, infrastructure connectivity, open trade, financial integration and people-to-people exchanges. The initiative will also prioritize small, high-standard projects to quickly enhance the sense of gain of the people in Belt and Road partners.
Besides, the initiative will help develop a new global cooperation model, making greater contributions to global governance and economic globalization.
China has been working with partner economies to promote regional economic development, so that the initiative's commitment to enhancing policy, improving infrastructure, promoting trade, boosting financial cooperation and increasing people-to-people connectivity among countries benefits new models of global economic development and governance.
The Belt and Road Initiative reflects China's people-oriented policy, which is in line with the common interests of the world.
The initiative has institutional guarantee because it has become an important component of China's national development policy, and has helped the country play a bigger role in promoting globalization.
The initiative also follows the spirit of openness and inclusiveness. It is an initiative for peaceful development and economic cooperation rather than a tool to gain geopolitical advantage or build any military alliance. It is a platform promoting open, inclusive and common development, not an exclusionary bloc or a "China club". It neither differentiates between countries due to their political systems or the ideology they follow nor believes in zero-sum games. And countries are welcome to join it only if they want to.
The Belt and Road Initiative is a complete development policy because it considers both domestic and international situations, promotes policy coordination, facilitates connectivity and trade, boosts financial integration and deepens people-to-people bonds. It also integrates China's "dual circulation" development paradigm and the United Nations' 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, in a bid to promote regional and global development.
The initiative calls for not only infrastructure development but also resource integration around the world. And it takes into account both domestic and international situations, helps safeguard security, and steadfastly forges ahead on the back of cooperation.
The author is a professor of the School of International Studies and deputy director of the Institute of Area Studies at Peking University.