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China welcomes willingness of France to participate in Belt and Road Initiative

French President Emmanuel Macron paid a state visit to China in January. China News Service

China welcomes the willingness demonstrated by the French side to participate in the Belt and Road initiative, foreign ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said on Tuesday in Beijing.

Geng made the remarks on June 19 when asked to comment on a report released by the French Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Armed Forces concerning the Belt and Road initiative (BRI).

The report, written by senator Pascal Allizard and entitled ‘Is BRI a simple economic label or new world order for France?’, suggested France view China’s policies with a “neither naïve nor aggressive” attitude and take a more active part in the initiative and play an important guiding role at the EU-China leintroducTRADEINVESTME among countries along the ancient Silk Road trade routes from Asia to Europe and Africa.

There report features three parts, introducing the background of BRI, offering an outlook for the future, and finally the ambiguous and suspicious contents in the proposal.

The report was described by Xinhua, a Chinese state-run news agency, as, “objective and rigorous on the whole," and not playing on notions such as the "China threat”.

“We are willing to explore the specific ways to conduct cooperation with France and other European countries under the framework of the BRI, effectively synergise development strategies, expand converging interests and better achieve mutual benefit and win-win outcomes,” the spokesperson said.

In April it was reported that national EU ambassadors to Beijing had compiled a critical report on China’s BRI in preparation for the upcoming EU-China summit in July.

The report described the project as designed to hamper free trade and further Chinese interests. Beijing branded the report as inaccurate.

The Belt and Road Initiative was proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2013 to boost trade links and infrastructure investment among countries along the ancient Silk Road trade routes from Asia to Europe and Africa.


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