G7’s $4o trillion plan to counter China's Belt And Road Initiative14 June 2021
The seven richest democracies in the world, known as G7, has unveiled a $40 trillion global infrastructure plan called "Build Back Better World (B3W) to counter China's multi-trillion-dollar Belt And Road Initiative (BRI). The adoption of the US-inspired B3W plan came after President Joe Biden and other leaders met at the 47th G7 summit in Cornwell in the UK on Saturday to address what they said strategic competition with China and commit to concrete actions to help meet the tremendous infrastructure needs in low and middle-income countries.
Western media reports said, the B3W plan will be a values-driven, high-standard and transparent infrastructure partnership to collectively analyze hundreds of billions of dollars of infrastructure investment in poorer nations by 2035. In a veiled criticism of China's approach to financing BRI projects, a senior official of Biden's administration said the B3W investments would be led by "a responsible and market-driven private sector, paired with high standards and transparency in public funding".
The summit was participated by the leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the US, and representatives from the European Union.
It is to be noted that China's Belt and Road Initiative scheme, which president Xi Jinping launched in 2013, involves development and investment initiatives that would stretch from Asia to Europe and beyond. More than 100 countries have signed agreements with China to cooperate in BRI projects like railways, ports, highways and other infrastructure.
Critics say Mr. Xi's plan to create a modern version of the ancient Silk Road trade route to link China with Asia, Europe and beyond is a vehicle for the expansion of Communist China. Beijing says such doubts betray the "imperial hangover" of many Western powers that humiliated China for centuries.
We hope US President Joe Biden will work with the US Congress to supplement existing development financing and collectively catalyse hundreds of billions of dollars of infrastructure investment for the poor countries.