Commentary: Belt and Road forum gains global applause, refutes smears

| 2017-05-19 15:43:43|Editor: MJ
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BEIJING, May 19 (Xinhuanet) -- The Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, which concluded Monday in Beijing, has drawn wide applause from the international community and refuted smears in some Western media reports prior to the forum.

Recently, some Western media reports arbitrarily politicalized the Belt and Road Initiative, alleging it is not mutually beneficial as China proposes and accusing the country of "seeking to dominate" and taking a grab at "global leadership".

And some Western commentators look at the Initiative with Cold War prejudice, calling it a modern-day version of the U.S.-led Marshall Plan.

However, the success of the forum and the wide praise it has received globally is sound evidence to disprove these remarks.

Officials who attended the forum highly commented on the inspiration of the initiative.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said that he salutes China's "large-scale" Belt and Road Initiative and called for greater Eurasian partnership at the opening ceremony of the forum.

Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni said the forum had sent a positive signal to the world economy and international trade. Italy is willing to participate in cooperation under the Belt and Road framework, particularly in the field of infrastructure, Gentiloni said.

"A phrase we often hear from China is 'win-win cooperation,' and there are those who are skeptical when they hear it. But we in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) can see the truth in the game-changing infrastructure projects resulting from the Belt and Road Initiative," said Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak.

Myanmar State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi commended the Belt and Road Initiative as one that will bring peace, reconciliation and prosperity to the region and the world at large.

Australian Trade Minister Steve Ciobo said that the Belt and Road Initiative is a way to unite global economies for trade in a new era. Australia would only benefit by embracing the initiative, as it would allow the Australian government to take advantage of new opportunities to help grow the local economy, Ciobo added.

Experts from various institutions also lauded the initiative and the forum.

"As a region that relies heavily on free trade, we need China to uphold free trade and push for the finalizing of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership," senior fellow from Singapore's Nanyang Technological University Oh Ei Sun noted.

Ahmed Sallam, former media consultant at the Egyptian embassy in Beijing, said that President Xi has proposed "a roadmap for the initiative, especially that he provided a comprehensive vision of what the initiative could achieve and how it could contribute to the world development in general."

Participants in the Leaders Roundtable of the forum adopted a joint communique on Monday.

The communique and the positive response to the forum demonstrate that the initiative features peace and cooperation, openness and inclusiveness, mutual learning and mutual benefit. It is not a China-centered plan.

The skeptics have failed to see the fact that China doesn't harbor a zero-sum mentality, but encourages win-win thinking.

Living in a close-knit community of shared future, efforts must be redoubled to develop global connectivity and enable all countries to achieve growth and shared-prosperity.