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Maritime Silk Road benefits countries involved, upholds multilateralism: Experts

Xi Jingping at the Belt and Road Forum. Photo by The Straits Times. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

BEIJING, Oct 3, 2020, Xinhua. The 21st-century Maritime Silk Road proposed by China in 2013 benefits countries and people along the route and brings them peace and development opportunities, several experts have said recently, Xinhua reported.

In promoting the construction of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), China has advocated multilateralism, emphasized win-win and mutual benefits, and shown a strong driving force in global governance, they said.

Cavince Adhere, a Kenya-based international relations researcher with a focus on China-Africa relations, said that by bringing together countries across different continents, the BRI “expands the space of multilateralism.”

In a global governance system in which some major powers are “increasingly looking inside with strong economic nationalism, and show disregard for the established rules, the Maritime Silk Road is another opportunity by China to galvanize progressive countries and shape a more beneficial, equal and inclusive international system,” he said.

“The number of countries that have subscribed to the Maritime Silk Road is a testament to the utility of the initiative as a new frontier of global governance and development,” he added.

Karim al-Omda, professor at the Arab Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport, said that China has paid close attention to the BRI by facilitating trade between the participating countries, and has prioritized mutual benefits in cooperating with other countries.

“China transfers its experience and technology and makes great progress in the mobile networks and the 5G technologies which will improve the world growth rates and increase the trade volume that suffered a decline during the COVID-19 period,” he said.

Cambodian People’s Party spokesman Suos Yara said that it’s vital for countries along the route to jointly build the Belt and Road, “especially to maintain an open and liberal international economic architecture,” and promote “win-win cooperation.”

The BRI is “evolving to become a key pillar in global governance,” said Yara, adding that he is convinced that the BRI will create more economic development opportunities for Cambodia and safeguard regional and global peace and development.

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