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B&R Key Words (6): Economic Corridors (Part I)

Editor: Qian Ding 丨CCTV.com

05-02-2017 15:09 BJT

Editor's Note: Keywords to Understand China: the Belt and Road Initiative is a selection of "China Keywords" entries included in an eponymous multilingual platform to help readers better understand China's B&R Initiative. It is one of the major projects implemented by the China International Publishing Group and the China Academy of Translation.

China-Mongolia-Russia Economic Corridor

The idea of a China-Mongolia-Russia Economic Corridor (CMREC) was proposed by President Xi Jinping on September 11, 2014 during the first trilateral meeting of the three heads of state in Dushanbe, capital of Tajikistan, and was welcomed by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj.

On June 23, 2016, the three countries put pen to paper on a development plan for the proposal, the first multilateral cooperation plan to form part of the Belt and Road Initiative.

As an important component of the Silk Road Economic Belt, the CMREC aims to align China's Belt and Road Initiative with Russia’s proposal for a Eurasian Union and Mongolia's Steppe Road program.

It creates an overarching platform to tap the potential and strengths of the three parties to expand development opportunities beneficial to all, promote regional economic integration, and enhance their collective competitiveness in the international market.

The CMREC has two key traffic arteries: One extends from China's Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region to Hohhot and on to Mongolia and Russia; the other extends from China's Dalian, Shenyang, Changchun, Harbin and Manzhouli to Russia's Chita.

Seven major areas of cooperation are envisaged: transport infrastructure and connectivity; port construction, and customs and border inspection and quarantine services; industrial capacity and investment; trade; cultural and people-to-people exchanges; environmental protection; and cooperation with adjacent regions. Transport is the main focus.

New Eurasian Land Bridge

The New Eurasian Land Bridge (NELB) is an international passageway linking the Pacific and the Atlantic. As distinct from the Siberian Landbridge, which goes from Russia's eastern port of Vladivostok through Siberia to Moscow and onward to West European countries, this "second" bridge goes from China's coastal cities of Lianyungang and Rizhao to Holland's Rotterdam and Belgium's Antwerp.

The 10,800-kilometer-long rail link runs through Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Poland and Germany, and serves more than 30 countries and regions.

Opened in the early 1990s, the NELB is gaining new impetus from the Belt and Road Initiative. It greatly facilitates trade and other exchanges between the countries along the route and between Asia and Europe.

To date, several transcontinental rail routes, which showcase the potential of the Belt and Road Initiative, have entered service. These include the Chongqing-Xinjiang-Europe Railway (reaching Germany's Duisburg via Poland), the Chengdu-Xinjiang-Europe Railway (reaching Poland), and the Yiwu-Xinjiang-Europe Railway (reaching Madrid). The construction of associated highways, power transmission lines, and ports is progressing in a steady manner.

China-Central Asia-West Asia Economic Corridor

The China-Central Asia-West Asia Economic Corridor (CCWAEC) links China and the Arabian Peninsula. The vast region it covers generally follows the trajectory of the ancient Silk Road.

The corridor starts from China's Xinjiang and traverses Central Asia before reaching the Persian Gulf, the Mediterranean Sea and the Arabian Peninsula. It crosses five Central Asian countries (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan) and 17 countries and regions in West Asia (including Iran, Saudi Arab and Turkey, etc.). It is an important component of the Silk Road Economic Belt.

Central and West Asia are rich in resources, but many factors – backward infrastructure and lack of funds in particular – hinder local development. The CCWAEC will facilitate economic and trade cooperation and flow of capital to these regions, boosting local economic and social development.

(The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Panview or CCTV.com)


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