Wednesday, 25 November 2020
Chinese president Xi Jinping Chinese president Xi Jinping

Croatia could be part of a new Silk Road

By  May 16, 2017

The two-day summit ''The Belt and Road'' which is being held in Beijing from the 14th to the 16th of May is the most important diplomatic event of the year.

On opening the summit, the Chinese president Xi Jinping said that China would invest $124 billion in the project ''The New Silk Road''. Although some world countries are sceptical about this project due to China's global influence and non-transparency, the summit has attracted 29 national leaders and representatives from 110 countries from four continents. The State secretary Marija Pejcinovic-Buric is leading the Croatian delegation.
The Chinese president Xi Jinping launched one of the most ambitious projects of today in 2013. The New Silk Road or One Belt is designed to reconnect continents, and the East and the West.

The project anticipates the construction of the fast railway, and the road network in a length of 13,000 kilometres. China has already invested $50 billion and announced to increase the investments for $14,5 billion.

On this occasion, Xi Jinping emphasized the importance of his new plan, which would create a path of peace, inclusiveness and free trade, and invited all present guests ''to leave old models based on rivalry and diplomatic games''.

As far as Croatia is concerned, it is questionable whether the country will become part of the New Silk Road or not. Last year in Riga, Croatia signed a memorandum with China on investment in ports and port infrastructure, however, the Chinese investment was never realized. ''China has invested in several project in Croatia so far, however, we hope that Croatia will ensure a better investment climate for China's investment, as investors are turning to more attractive locations'', commented Hu Zhaoming, the Chinese ambassador to Croatia.

The trade exchange between China and Croatia is around $1,5 billion, but Croatia has not yet made the most of the potential of the Chinese market, which has been growing and opening to the world.

The Voice of Dubrovnik


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