The two-day Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing, which opens tomorrow May 14, is poised to consolidate the “new paradigm” in international relations, based on “win win” cooperation as opposed to the zero sum game of traditional Western geopolitics. Over 110 countries will be represented, including 29 heads of state and government, and some 60 international organizations.
Since the New Silk Road (now called the Belt and Road Initiative – BRI) was put on the agenda by President Xi Jinping three years and eight months ago, it has led to an incredible explosion of development, unprecedented in history. Over 130 bilateral and regional transport agreements have already been signed under the BRI, 356 international road routes have been opened; 4,200 direct flights connect China with 43 of the participating countries; and 39 China-Europe freight train routes are now in operation, departing daily from Chongqing to a European destination.
The Belt and Road Forum itself has been termed an “historic event” by Helga Zepp-LaRouche, the founder and international chairwoman of the Schiller Institute, who herself has been known in China as “the New Silk Road lady” since the late 1990s. She has also given hundreds of speeches and interviews internationally on the subject, which are available on the Schiller Institute website.
Just recently, she gave the keynote speech to a conference titled “The Future of Ibero-America Lies in the New Silk Road,” which was broadcast to audiences gathered in Mexico City, Hermosillo and Querétaro (in Mexico); Lima and Pucallpa (in Peru); and Guatemala City, as well as being webcast live over the internet.
On that occasion, she went through six major industrial development corridors along the Belt and Road and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road:
- The corridor from China to Central and Western Asia which is intended to be extended through Iraq, Syria, Turkey, into Europe and into Africa;
- A corridor from China to Western Europe which goes from such cities as Chengdu, Chongqing, Yiwu, Lianyungang, up to to Duisburg, Hamburg, Rotterdam, Lyon, and Madrid.
- The Mongolia- China-Russia corridor which involves 32 large projects.
- The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), in which China has invested $46 billion, and which should create 700,000 new jobs in Pakistan.
- The Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar (BCIM) corridor, bridging the Southeast Asia region.
- The China-Indochina Peninsular corridor.
Moreover, an entire railway network is to be built in Eastern and Central Africa. In fact, Africa is a major focus for the Chinese initiatives. In 2016, China was the single largest contributor of foreign direct investments and also of new jobs in Africa.
This prompted Helga Zepp-LaRouche to comment in her speech to Ibero-Americans:
“after literally centuries of suffering colonialism and poverty and underdevelopment, for the very first time, through this Chinese initiative, we have the prospect for developing countries to overcome poverty, hunger, underdevelopment and to realize their true potential.”
A sampling of Helga Zepp-LaRouche’s international interventions can be viewed here.
Read EIR’s authoritative report on “The New Silk Road Becomes the World Land-Bridge“