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Remarks by Ambassador Liu Jieyi at the Opening of the Exhibition on the Belt and Road Initiative

2017/05/08

Deputy-Secretary-General Amina Mohammed,

Excellencies,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Thank you for joining us at the photo exhibition on the Belt and Road Initiative.

The Belt and Road Initiative, or "the Silk Road Economic Belt" and "the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road", was proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping in the autumn of 2013. Its objective is to achieve common development through connectivity and cooperation. In just three years, this ground-breaking initiative has moved to operation with wide participation.

Today, the Chinese Mission to the United Nations, together with Xinhua News Agency North America, are presenting to you this exhibition entitled "Strengthening International Cooperation for Win-Win Development". These photographs showcase the thinking behind the Belt and Road Initiative, its achievements so far, and the prospects it promises.

The Belt and Road Initiative has deep roots in the historical and cultural heritage of the ancient Silk Road more than two millennia ago. Our forefathers opened up trade routes and cultural links among major civilizations in Asia, Europe and Africa, which were the early footprints of globalization by mankind. Same as the Silk Road, the Belt and Road Initiative builds on the paradigm of "peace and cooperation, openness and inclusiveness, learning from each other, mutual benefits and win-win". However, it is not a simple revival or upgraded version of the ancient Silk Road. It bears the hallmarks of the 21st century, an era centered on the imperatives of peace and development. It is a joint endeavor by China and other participating countries to give fresh momentum to common development, a new approach to address global challenges and more energy to foster a community of shared future for mankind.

The Belt and Road Initiative is an international public good that benefits all parties. With its focus on various aspects of connectivity regarding policy, infrastructure, trade, finance, people-to-people etc., the Initiative widens and deepens partnerships in multi-dimensional and multi-layered networking. Openness, inclusiveness and mutual benefits are central to the Initiative and the source of its strong support. "Extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits" are its guiding principle. The Initiative does not replace existing regional platforms or mechanism, but seeks to achieve synergy among various strategies and take common development further through closer international cooperation.

Since its inception, the Initiative has received wide recognition and active participation from across the world. Over 100 countries and international organizations have come on board. More than 40 of them have concluded cooperation agreements with China. This concerted effort has registered steady progress. The economic corridor development is making headway. Trade and investment are growing substantially. Key joint projects are well underway. To use a musical metaphor, it is not China's solo, but a symphony performed by all relevant countries.

The Belt and Road Initiative strongly reinforces the undertakings of the United Nations. It embodies international cooperation, one of the purposes and principles enshrined in the UN Charter. Regional economic integration and interconnectivity features prominently in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Belt and Road Initiative works hand in hand with the 2030 Agenda. It is no coincidence that both the UN General Assembly and Security Council have adopted resolutions supporting the implementation of the Initiative. UN agencies such as the ESCAP and UNDP have signed cooperation documents with China on the Initiative. It is our strong belief that the Belt and Road Initiative will contribute greatly to and generate extensive support for the implementation of SDGs and other work of the UN.

The Belt and Road Initiative proposed by China is owned by all participants in different parts of the world. Next week, China will hold the high level Belt and Road Forum for International cooperation in Beijing. Leaders from nearly 30 countries and various international organizations, including Secretary-General António Guterres and the President of the GA, Peter Thomson, as well as business and academic communities will attend the Forum. Its agenda is to review current progress, plan ahead, and with collective wisdom, seek for solutions to challenges in global economy. We believe this Forum will be successful. Its success will be one for multilateralism and our global cause of joint development.

Thank you!

(Photo by Liao Pan, China News Service)

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