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Tajik leader hails broad benefits of Belt, Road

By REN QI | China Daily | Updated: 2019-04-26 10:13
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Tajikistan's President Emomali Rahmon arrives at Beijing airport ahead of the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing, China, April 25, 2019. [Photo/Xinhua]

Tajik President Emomali Rahmon said the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative has a historic meaning for the region and the world.

BRI-related projects in Tajikistan have been implemented in many fields, and the Central Asian country has reaped the fruit of the bilateral cooperation, Rahmon said.

Tajikistan, one of the first participants after China proposed the initiative in 2013, also was one of the first members of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank. The mountainous, landlocked country is coordinating its National Development Strategy of Tajikistan for the period up to 2030 with the BRI.

The BRI is dedicated to pushing economic globalization as well as the liberalization of trading and the improvement of the global governance system, Rahmon said.

"Tajikistan will continue to push deep coordination between our national strategy and the BRI and actively strengthen our regional cooperation, thus reaching more projects."

The president made the remarks in an interview with Chinese media ahead of the opening of the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, which started on Thursday and runs though Saturday in Beijing.

He said the forum provides an important platform for constructive dialogue and discussion on sustainable development among all participating countries, and will help to enhance international cooperation.

Tajikistan's government responded to the Silk Road Economic Belt as soon as it was proposed by President Xi Jinping in September 2013.

Rahmon said that Xi's proposal to create the Silk Road Economic Belt was the legacy and development of the concept of the ancient Silk Road. The BRI provides tremendous opportunities for boosting the common growth of countries and regions involved by enhancing and improving multilateral cooperation mechanisms.

He said infrastructure construction is one of the most important areas of Sino-Tajik cooperation. In the past two decades, China participated in over 50 large projects in Tajikistan, including the Lolazor-Khatlon and North-South power transmission lines, road construction projects and the construction of a tunnel under the Shar-Shar Pass on the road between Dushanbe and Kuljab.

"The BRI efficiently connects the involved countries and regions, and helps landlocked Tajikistan access international markets and realize rapid economic growth," Rahmon said.

"The initiative benefits Tajikistan as well as the rest of Central Asia. Countries in this region are all landlocked and are limited in their access to seaports. Infrastructure construction under the BRI will produce more railways and highways, break the transportation bottleneck for regional development and connect Central Asian countries with the world market," he said.

The two countries also can expand cooperation to more sectors, including agriculture, energy and technology development during the joint building of the Belt and Road, Rahmon added.

He agreed with China's proposal to build a community with a shared future for mankind. He said the proposal shows the positive contribution of China in maintaining global peace and stability as well as pushing development of the international community.

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