belt and road initiative
China has begun using the One-Belt-One-Road project, rechristened the Belt-and-Road Initiative (BRI), for expanding diplomatic engagement and securing strategic mileage. India might find itself strategically cramped as several countries from Asia and Europe get more committed to the Chinese connectivity plan, leaving India isolated. In a major public diplomacy exercise, China has announced scholarships for at least 3,000 students from countries and regions around BRI.
Much work was concluded in Beijing of late by Singapore ministers and their Chinese counterparts, related to the bilateral government-to-government projects in Suzhou, Tianjin and Chongqing. [...] Yet for all that, there is an abiding sense of realism that even old ties are subject to the vicissitudes of geopolitical changes. That was borne out in past months when diplomatic friction surfaced between the two countries.
Two thousand years ago, merchants and caravans began moving between east and west along the Silk Road, trading goods, philosophy and technology. Now a modern Silk Road, rekindling trade and achieving common prosperity, is in the making. The Belt and Road Initiative, proposed by Chinese president Xi Jinping, has gained traction in the last three years, scholars and officials said.
"Singapore plays a pivotal role in building the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, and over 20 forums themed on the Belt and Road Initiative have been held here in 2016, which highlights all walks of life in Singapore attach great importance to the initiative with forward thinking," said Chinese Ambassador to Singapore Chen Xiaodong in a forum focused on educational exchange between the two countries in December.
A total of 20 young leaders from China and Austria have engaged in close discussions and exchanges in a four-day agenda from Nov. 30 to Dec. 3, in Beijing, Guangzhou and Shenzhen to enhance mutual understanding and friendship between the two countries. [...] Revolving around topics including cultural inheritance and China-EU interconnectivity, delegates from the two sides have engaged in lively discussions.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang's just-concluded eight-day Eurasia trip, encompassing Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, and Russia, from November 2 to 9 is highly significant in enhancing Chinese economic diplomacy on the international stage. Li's trip gives a strong signal to the rest of the world that China is ready to play a leading role in regional and international affairs.
The 2016 Sino-Thai Culture and Tourism Friendship Caravan was co-organized by the China International Culture Association and Thailand Tourism Bureau, in order to promote “Belt and Road” Initiative-guided cultural construction, and give a boost to cultural exchange and cooperation between China and Thailand.
The China-proposed “Belt and Road” initiative has moved the first concrete steps in Italy, whose authorities and experts see a range of win-win opportunities for both countries.