Big Deal For China

The BRI is not just aimed at solving current economic and trade challenges but also it goes to secure the future for China. It is imperative to state that a number of arguments and counterarguments have been made on the critical factors that motivated China to engage in such a massive plan. We can broadly see this from the economic, political, and technology perspectives.

In terms of economic perspective, China aims at optimizing the excess capacity of its industry, and to achieve this, it requires access to new markets for which it will be able to sell its products. Linking the least developed provinces in China is another driving economic factor, China aim at using the BRI to link not only the regions of the world but so as to link its provinces together and then connect its provinces to the global market, thereby enhancing the level of development in the less developed provinces in China. Employment creation is another economic force, given the huge population size of China, for example, construction of rail lines in member countries is conducted by Chinese firms using Chinese labor.

Political factors are also crucial for china. For example, the trade war between China and the United States is not only a show of economic strength but that of political strength as well, while the United States is trying to restrict its trading with China due to the cheapness of Chinese products. China aims to increase its trading with other regions of the world, thereby increasing the strength of its political alliance with these countries. This provides a platform for China to promote its political interest and ideology on a global scale. The sea port along the BRI is structured to enable them to perform dual functions: economic and military. Thus BRI also will provide China with the opportunity of showcasing and expanding its military intervention globally, thereby increasing its military and political stance globally.

China also wants to enhance influence in the technology industry, by fostering the acceptance of Chinese standards. A common saying in China is “Third-tier companies make products, second-tier companies make technology and first-tier companies make standards.  The Chinese campaign to market its high-speed railway technology is a means of establishing Chinese standards in the sector.

Chinese provinces and Chinese rail construction workers. Source: Wikipedia and Globaltimes

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