Friday, 19 October, 2018

Germany demands more free trade guarantees on China Silk Road plan - minister

Kenny Thornton | 14 May, 2017, 22:42

President Xi Jinping greeted leaders from 29 nations for the two-day summit in Beijing after USA and South Korean military officials confirmed that Pyongyang had launched a ballistic missile.

The new Silk Road project is central to president Xi's ambition to place China as a champion of globalisation in contrast to the "America First" protectionist approach advocated by U.S. president Donald Trump.

The project is seen as a practical solution to relieve China's industrial overcapacity.

Ciobo also condemned North Korea's latest firing of a ballistic missile early on Sunday, but would not be drawn on whether North Korea's attendance at the summit - at Beijing's invitation - sent the wrong message at a time when the world was trying to pressure Pyongyang over its repeated nuclear and missile tests.

Huang Rihan, researcher with the Beijing-based Centre for China and Globalisation, said the forum was, however, likely to give some guidance on the direction of future worldwide cooperation.

Speaking to an audience that included Russian president Vladimir Putin and leaders of 29 other countries, Mr Xi outlined the project to build ports, railways and other facilities.

The president also announced additional Chinese financing for "Belt and Road" totalling 780 billion yuan ($113 billion). He said his government will provide aid worth 60 billion yuan to developing countries and global organisations.

Now a catchphrase both domestically and overseas, the Belt and Road Initiative is essentially a new inclusive platform on which countries in Eurasia and beyond can strengthen economic and cultural cooperation to achieve common prosperity.

Leaders and officials from various countries including Russia, US, Japan, UK, Germany and France are attending the meeting.

Hafiz Saeed detained on terror charges, produced before Pakistan judicial board
The judge also asked the counsel of Hafiz Saeed if he was presented before the review board before extension of his detention. His organisations took part in welfare work and audit of its financial matters was carried out for transparency, he said.

"No country can accept a project that ignores its core concerns on sovereignty and territorial integrity", External Affairs Ministry spokesman Gopal Baglay said in the statement.

"US firms can offer the best-value goods and services required over the life of a project", said Pottinger, who is special assistant to Trump and the National Security Council's senior director for East Asia.

Xi billed the B&R initiative as "a project of the century" that will benefit people around the world.

Jonathan Hillman, director of the Reconnecting Asia Project at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies, said´╝Üthe initiative was a double-edged sword.

Delegates in Beijing will hold a series of sessions on Sunday to discuss the plan in more detail, including trade and finance.

The initiative would provide some of the $7 trillion of investment in infrastructure the Asian Development Bank says the region needs this decade.

Without referring to India's objections to the China-Pakistan-Economic Corridor (CPEC), Xi said, "all countries should respect each other's sovereignty, dignity and territorial integrity, each other's development paths and social systems, and each other's core interests and major concerns".

Xi announced that China will contribute an additional 100 billion yuan (about Dollars 14.5 billion) to the USD 40 billion Silk Road Fund to scale up financial support for the Belt and Road Initiative.

Wary of Islamist militants, Pakistan has set up a new army division to protect the economic corridor. It "would not form a small group to undermine stability but would instead create a harmonious family", he said.


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