HANOI, March 1 (Xinhua) -- "Vietnam will certainly be joining the upcoming Belt and Road Summit" that will be held in China's capital city of Beijing for the first time in May, Vietnamese experts told Xinhua recently.
Do Tien Sam, editor-in-chief of the China Research Journal published by the Institute for Chinese Studies in Vietnam Academy of Social Science, made the remark in an exclusive interview with Xinhua.
According to Sam, "As founding members of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), Vietnam and other countries support China's Belt and Road Initiative."
"In the joint communiques between two parties' chiefs during their respective visits to each country, Vietnam and China have determined that strategic connectivity between China's Belt and Road and Vietnam's 'Two Corridors and One Economic Circle' should be boosted," Sam said.
The expert said in addition to joining the summit, "Vietnam will contribute its ideas towards the success of the meeting".
Similarly, Tran Viet Thai, deputy director of the Institute for Foreign Policy and Strategic Studies under Vietnam's Ministry of Foreign Affairs' Diplomatic Academy, said that Vietnam will join the summit "even at a high level" as "the country has always said it is interested in the initiative."
Showing his eagerness about the first summit, Sam added "the meeting will be China's biggest diplomatic event during the year."
Ahead of China deciding which topics might be traversed during the meeting, Sam said the summit should involve discussions about sharing.
"Despite being a developing country, China has rapidly advanced more than other countries. China should share its development opportunities and accomplishments with other countries," said the scholar, who has spent a significant amount of time studying China-related affairs.
He went on to explain that "Following China's terms of 'connectivity in five areas', namely, connectivity of policy, transportation, trade, currency and the heart of the peoples, the summit should stress the importance of economic sharing,' which is also in line with China's neighborly diplomacy that brings favorable opportunities and results to neighboring countries."
The expert also said he believes that the summit will help bolster the national reputation of China in the world and in the region, especially in the context of rising trade protectionism.
While suggesting that the content of the Belt and Road initiative should be made clearer to even laypeople as well as enterprises, Sam said, "If people find it beneficial and it creates more jobs and provides higher incomes, then they will voluntarily join the initiative."
Echoing Sam, Thai said holding a summit is "the right step for China in its efforts to institutionalize the Belt and Road initiative and make it a regular high-level mechanism in the region."
Thai also said he expected that the upcoming summit will clarify the strategy, content and yield concrete results so that regional countries will be further encouraged and engage more actively in the forum.
"In the world today, before joining any mechanisms, countries must fully asses the potential benefits. I believe that the forum will succeed in communicating the myriad advantages," said the Vietnamese official.
On how to boost economic development in the countries along the Belt and Road, Thai said "Building a street or a seaport is not enough. The most important thing is to provide socio-economic solutions to the people and local authorities where the infrastructures are located so that they can see the total benefits."
When China does this, the value of the Belt and Road initiative as well as other Chinese proposals will grow exponentially, the expert emphasized.
Looking forward, Sam highlighted three important words: "Practical. Effective. Balanced."
The scholar said "To maintain economic development among countries along the Belt and Road, economic sharing should be stressed so that all sides will benefit and win-win outcomes will be seen. The projects should not be formalistic but must bring practical, effective and well-balanced benefits to local people".