China’s flagship Belt and Road initiative represents a grand ambition to boost trade and economic growth across Eurasia through investment in infrastructure across land and sea. While some companies see significant opportunities, the proposals have generated some confusion over the details, and scepticism about whose interests it will serve.
- What does Beijing hope to achieve through the Belt and Road initiative and over what timescale?
- Does the initiative represent a strategic challenge to Europe?
- What opportunities could Belt and Road create for the EU and European companies, and how might these be exploited?
- Does the growing centralization of political power in China make Beijing a more difficult partner for Europe?
- Do diplomatic efforts like the 16+1 process indicate a Chinese strategy to divide Europeans? Given China’s economic weight, how successful might this approach be?