European Investment Bank supports China’s Belt and Road strategy

The European Investment Bank (EIB) has formally agreed to support China’s One Belt, One Road (OBOR) initiative, which aims to spend hundreds of billions of dollars on infrastructure schemes to facilitate east-west trade.

OBOR would "promote economic growth and strengthen international cooperation" the EIB said on the heels of the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing 14-15 May.

Chinese President Xi Jinping used the forum to pledge an extra $122bn for international infrastructure schemes.

Other development banks are getting involved. A Memorandum of Understanding was signed by representatives of the Asian Development Bank, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the New Development Bank, the World Bank, and the EIB.

"We … recognise the clear the leadership that China has shown to develop this key initiative," said Jean-EIB Director-General Christophe Laloux yesterday, adding that his bank would try and share "financial, technical and environmental experience gained across Europe and around the world to support the Belt and Road initiative".

Cooperation will will "enable increased dialogue and examination of individual infrastructure projects located in Asia, Europe and Africa", the EIB said.

Image: Chinese President Xi Jinping (centre), Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang (left) and Russian President Vladimir Putin attend a roundtable meeting of leaders at the Belt and Road international forum in Beijing, 15 May 2017 (Kremlin)

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