China Earmarks USD 40 Bn for Silk Road Fund

China plans to invest USD 40 billion to establish a Silk Road Fund, as announced by the country’s president Xi Jinping at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference last week, Xinhua news agency reported.

The meeting was attended by representatives from Bangladesh, Cambodia, Laos, Mongolia, Myanmar, Pakistan and Tajikistan along with the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

The fund is intended to revive maritime and land trade links between Asian countries by financing construction of infrastructural solutions and industrial and financial cooperation to reduce bottlenecks, Xunhua said.

The fund, controlled by the Chinese government, would be open to investors from both Asia and abroad.

The Chinese president introduced the “Belt and Road” initiatives to build a Silk Road Economic Belt and a 21st Century Maritime Silk Road in 2013, in an attempt to  revive the historic trade routes between China and other Asian nations.

China is already investing strenuous efforts to bring stability to its sluggish shipbuilding and shipping industry, predominantly state-owned, by encouraging mergers and foreign investment.

Within the framework of boosting its shipping industry China has also established two banks: the New Development Bank and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.

World Maritime News Staff; Image: EU

 

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