At least $64 billion worth of deals were signed during the summit for China’s Belt and Road Initiative this week, Chinese President Xi Jinping said on Saturday, as quoted in a report by Reuters.
In his closing remarks for the summit, Xi said market principles will apply in all Belt and Road cooperation projects, the report added.
The summit was attended by 37 foreign heads of state and government, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde.
The Chinese president called for joint efforts of all parties to promote the high-quality development of the Belt and Road Initiative.
“I’m confident that with all of us working together, we can build more consensus and produce more outcomes at today’s roundtable, which will help promote the international cooperation on Belt and Road Initiative, bring greater benefits to our peoples and contribute more to building a community with a shared future for mankind,” Xi said.
This year’s forum, which takes the theme “Belt and Road Co-operation, Shaping a Brighter Shared Future,” was held from Thursday to Saturday in Beijing.
The BRF is a top-level platform for international cooperation within the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative which was first proposed by President Xi in 2013, aimed at building a trade and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe, Africa and beyond based on ancient trade routes.
The Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-century Maritime Silk Road or The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is a development strategy proposed by the Chinese government that focuses on connectivity and cooperation between Eurasian countries, primarily the People's Republic of China (PRC), the land-based Silk Road Economic Belt (SREB) and the ocean-going Maritime Silk Road (MSR).
The initiative was known in English as the One Belt and One Road Initiative (OBOR) until 2016.
The Chinese government calls the initiative “a bid to enhance regional connectivity and embrace a brighter future,” while critics call it a push by China to take a larger role in global affairs with a China-centered trading network.