2023: China to expand its soft influence through big BRI push

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Terming these projects as milestones of progress, China shifted the focus of its foreign policy from internal development to external influence. And so, a fresh BRI push has begun…reports Asian Lite News

China is trying to expand its soft influence by strengthening its diplomatic and economic ties with 140 partner nations through the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) push in 2023, reported The Singapore Post.

Like in 2022, in 2023 as well China proposes to make efforts to increase the transport capacity of the trains. In November 2022, the first full-time schedule China-Europe freight train was dispatched and arrived to Duisburg, Germany after an 11-day journey.

China used the last couple of pandemic years to test how much freight can be carried through BRI transport projects from China to Europe, reported The Singapore Post.

More than 109,000 tons of anti-pandemic products have been sent to Europe through the trains to date, along with auto parts, electronic products, and raw materials, effectively guaranteeing the stability of international industrial and supply chains.

“The train has created a new passage between China, Central Asia, East Asia, Southeast Asia, and the European continent. It is also building a new landscape in global trade that will lead to win-win cooperation with countries and regions along the BRI,” Liang Haiming, dean of the Belt and Road Institute at Hainan University, told the Global Times recently.

China expects that once the freight services become successful and regular, many trading companies might for the train if the cargo was sent from Japan, South Korea, and Southeast Asia and heading to Mongolia, and central Asia, according to industry insiders.

In the new year, China expects the China-Europe freight trains to open up new markets and deepen China’s trade ties. This is seen as a counter to the United States’ trade monopoly with Europe, reported The Singapore Post.

The People’s Daily reports that as an important public product provided by China to improve global governance, the high-quality joint construction of the “Belt and Road” will continue to innovate and take the initiative, emphasizing “seeking common ground while reserving differences, inclusiveness, and promoting the incremental reform of the existing international order and international rules”.

The expectation is that the BRI freight project successes will enable China to sit more prominently on global forums like the United Nations, the G20, APEC and other regional organizations, and thus have a say on important consensus points on global governance, reported The Singapore Post.

It is such propaganda that encourages China to even consider hosting the third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation this year to inject new impetus into global development and prosperity, reported The Singapore Post.

Terming these projects as milestones of progress, China shifted the focus of its foreign policy from internal development to external influence. And so, a fresh BRI push has begun.

As analysts observed, the BRI has largely been successful “not in terms of concrete projects only but in ways that have helped China strengthen its diplomatic and economic ties with 140 partner nations and position itself as the champion of globalization”.

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