China’s vision of a “Silk Road Economic Belt”

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Mr. Xi proposed the Silk Road Economic Belt, one of the effort’s pillars, on a Central Asia visit in September 2013. He called for building a transport corridor connecting the Pacific Ocean to the Baltic Sea and linking East Asia to South Asia and the Middle East to serve a combined market of some three billion people.

On that trip, he oversaw the signing of deals valued at $30 billion in Kazakhstan, including oil and gas projects, and agreed to pump $3 billion into loans and infrastructure in Kyrgyzstan.

During a trip in Indonesia the following month, he put forward another pillar, a maritime trade corridor he called the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road. It entails building or expanding ports and industrial parks across Southeast Asia and in places including Sri Lanka, Kenya and Greece, along with a goal of expanding bilateral trade with Southeast Asia to $1 trillion by 2020—more than double its level last year.

from a WSJ Asia article here (paywalled).

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