Remarks at the Press Conference of the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation
H.E. Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China
Beijing, 27 April 2019
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Friends from the Media,
Welcome to the press conference of the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation (BRF). Since it was put forth over five years ago, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has caught much media attention. All of you have been following and covering the second BRF since its opening, recording memorable moments, spreading key messages, and reporting on the fruitful outcomes of Belt and Road cooperation. On behalf of the Chinese government and delegates from all participating countries, I wish to express our appreciation to all of you for your support and hard work!
This year’s BRF, the second China has hosted, is larger and more substantive than the first one, attracting more countries and producing more results. This year, delegates and business representatives from over 150 countries have participated in the opening ceremony, the high-level meeting, 12 thematic forums and a CEO conference. The Leaders’ Roundtable held today was attended by leaders from 38 countries as well as the United Nations (UN) and the International Monetary Fund.
The theme of this year’s Forum is “Belt and Road Cooperation: Shaping a Brighter Shared Future”. Earlier today, leaders of participating countries and international organizations held in-depth discussions on “Boosting Connectivity to Explore New Sources of Growth”, “Strengthening Policy Synergy and Building Closer Partnerships” and “Promoting Green and Sustainable Development to Implement UN 2030 Agenda”. We reached extensive consensus on promoting high-quality Belt and Road cooperation with refined principles, clear priorities and stronger mechanisms. The leaders’ common views are reflected in the Joint Communiqué adopted by consensus at the Leaders’ Roundtable and will guide our efforts as we advance Belt and Road cooperation in years to come.
– We spoke positively of the progress and value of Belt and Road cooperation. We shared the view that Belt and Road cooperation has created opportunities for common prosperity. Since the BRI was proposed over five years ago, and especially after the first BRF, countries concerned have made concerted efforts to expand policy communication, upgrade infrastructure connectivity, advance economic, trade and investment cooperation, enhance financial cooperation, and facilitate people-to-people exchange. The “early harvests” of Belt and Road cooperation achieved so far have opened up greater space for national and global economic growth, provided a platform for enhancing international cooperation, and made a fresh contribution to building a community with a shared future for mankind.
– We enriched the concept of Belt and Road cooperation and jointly reaffirmed our commitment to its high-quality development. Guided by the principle of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits, the parties have conducted consultation as equals, jointly shouldered responsibilities and enjoyed the benefits together. All interested countries are welcome to join us. We are committed to supporting open, clean and green development and rejecting protectionism, and are working hard to develop a clean and green Silk Road for the new era. We have agreed to act on the principles of high standard, people-centered and sustainable development, align our cooperation with universally accepted international rules and standards, follow the philosophy of people-centered development, and pursue coordinated progress in economic, social and environmental dimensions. These common views have pointed the way for Belt and Road cooperation toward our common goal, that is, to realize more effective connectivity between countries, promote stronger economic growth and closer international cooperation, and deliver better lives to our peoples.
– We set clear priorities for Belt and Road cooperation and decided to strengthen all-round and multi-tiered cooperation. We will continue to promote land, sea, air and cyber connectivity and develop high-quality, sustainable, resilient, affordable, inclusive and accessible infrastructure. We will advance the development of economic corridors and economic and trade cooperation zones, enhance the alignment between markets, regulations and standards, and encourage the development of digital infrastructure. In all Belt and Road cooperation projects, the government will provide guidance, enterprises will act as the main players and market principles will apply. This will make the projects more sustainable and create a fair and non-discriminatory environment for foreign investors. We will continue to diversify financing channels, reduce financing costs, and welcome the participation of multilateral and foreign financial institutions in investment and financing cooperation. We have also agreed to conduct extensive and multi-faceted people-to-people and cultural exchanges, and launch more cooperation projects for the benefit of our peoples. We all want to make Belt and Road cooperation development-oriented, and all support global development, particularly the implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and will strive for clean, low-carbon and sustainable development. It is also necessary to help developing countries break bottlenecks to development and better partake in and benefit from global value, industrial and supply chains.
– We all supported the idea of building a global partnership on connectivity and agreed to strengthen mechanisms for Belt and Road cooperation. To this end, we will find greater complementarity between the economic development initiatives and plans of interested countries and international organizations, step up bilateral cooperation and cooperation in third markets, and continue to develop the China-Europe Railway Express, the New International Land-Sea Trade Corridor and other international transportation and trade links, in order to help more countries improve connectivity. We reviewed the report of the BRF Advisory Council, and look forward to more intellectual support from the Advisory Council for Belt and Road cooperation and the BRF. We will uphold multilateralism, and work to foster a framework led by the BRF and underpinned by multilateral and bilateral cooperation in various areas. The goal is to see that our cooperation is guided by an overall vision, followed up by actions and supported by concrete institutions. The leaders share the view that the BRF is an important platform for multilateral cooperation and support holding the Forum on a regular basis.
– We all supported more results-oriented cooperation and more concrete outcomes. In the run-up to and during the course of this Forum, the parties reached 283 deliverables, including inter-governmental cooperation agreements, practical cooperation projects, the initiation of multilateral dialogue and cooperation platforms in specific areas, and the release of a Belt and Road cooperation progress report as well as the report of the BRF Advisory Council. As the host of the Forum, China will release a deliverables list. A great many business representatives participated in the CEO conference and signed project cooperation agreements worth over US$64 billion. All of this shows that Belt and Road cooperation is in sync with the times, widely supported, people-centered and beneficial to all.
Yesterday, I announced a series of major reform and opening-up steps that China will take. They are seen by all sides as good news for both China and the world at large and important opportunities for Belt and Road cooperation and development of the world economy.
This year’s Forum sends a clear message: more and more friends and partners will join in Belt and Road cooperation, and the cooperation will enjoy higher quality and brighter prospects. I have noted on many occasions that while the BRI was launched by China, its opportunities and outcomes are shared by the world. Belt and Road cooperation is a long-term endeavor and a common cause of all its cooperation partners. China will work with all parties to implement the consensus reached at this year’s Forum, advance results-oriented implementation of projects in the spirit of an architect refining the blueprint, ensure substantive, steady, sustained and high-quality development and usher in a brighter future of Belt and Road cooperation. I hope our friends from the media will continue to actively support Belt and Road cooperation.