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Japan encouraged to seize BRI opportunities

By JIANG XUEQING in Tokyo | China Daily Global | Updated: 2024-04-16 09:21
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Chinese Ambassador to Japan Wu Jianghao encourages people from all walks of life in Japan to objectively view the Belt and Road Initiative and seize more cooperation opportunities in joint BRI construction at a forum in Tokyo on April 11, 2024. [Photo provided to]

People from all walks of life in Japan can objectively view the Belt and Road Initiative and seize more cooperation opportunities, as joint BRI construction provides a pathway for building a community with a shared future for mankind, says Chinese Ambassador to Japan Wu Jianghao.

Any country committed to shared development can take part in the BRI as an equal partner and gain from it, regardless of their political system, history, culture or stage of development, Wu said.

Since the launch of the BRI in 2013, the joint construction of the initiative has entered a stage of high-quality development.

Over the past 11 years, the BRI has achieved fruitful results, becoming the widest-ranging and largest-scale international cooperation platform in the world, Wu told a forum organized by the Japan-China Belt and Road Initiative Promotion Association in Tokyo last week.

"The joint construction of the BRI practices true multilateralism, does not exclude or target any party, does not engage in geopolitical games, does not form closed and exclusive 'small circles', does not impose values and development models, and certainly does not form military alliances."

Therefore, the joint construction of the BRI can maximize consensus, overcome obstacles and become increasingly accepted by the international community, he added.

Developing countries have embraced the initiative as it aims to resolve their significant challenges, including infrastructure, funding, technology and expertise, Wu said.

Some Western countries have been accusing China of creating "debt traps" in developing countries, which is pure misinformation, he said.

Data from the World Bank showed Western commercial and multilateral institutions hold two-thirds of the debt obligations of low- and middle-income countries in the next seven years, while China only accounts for 14 percent of such debts.

Wu called on Japan to listen to the voices of its companies, as many are involved in Belt and Road cooperation and have benefited from it.

Many Japanese companies are using China-Europe freight trains and river-sea transportation to expand business opportunities. Collaborations between Chinese and Japanese companies and financial institutions in third-party markets have yielded positive results, spanning sectors such as infrastructure, eco-financing, logistics and clean energy.

"The facts prove that the BRI is an opportunity for Japan, not a threat," Wu said.

China is willing to work with all countries to achieve high-quality development of the BRI on a larger scope, in broader fields and at a deeper level, he said. As a close neighbor and key partner of China, Japan is welcome to take part in the joint construction of the BRI.

Attendees to the forum included the Japan-China Belt and Road Initiative Promotion Association's President Kazuyuki Hamada, and its representative Yoshikazu Ono. They said the association will vigorously promote a better understanding of the BRI among various sectors of Japanese society and actively take part in the joint construction of the initiative.

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