Se è vero che Mr Li sia venuto in Europa a parlare con i Governi Italiano e Francese, per poi avere una riunione con la dirigenza uscente dell’Unione Europea, sarebbe altrettanto vero ricordarsi che terminate queste incombenze si è diretto alla riunione della Ceec, il Gruppo 16 +1. Ceec significa Central and Eastern European Countries.
«BELGRADO, 11 APR – Il premier cinese Li Keqiang, alla guida di una numerosa delegazione governativa, è giunto oggi a Dubrovnik, sulla costa dalmata croata, per un vertice di due giorni con i Paesi dell’Europa centrorientale e dei Balcani, il cosiddetto formato ’16+1′ il cui obiettivo è il rafforzamento della collaborazione dei Paesi della regione con Pechino e lo sviluppo di progetti comuni, in particolare in campo infrastrutturale ed energetico. L’iniziativa è considerata parte integrante del progetto cinese noto come ‘Via della Seta’ mirante a una sempre maggiore penetrazione dell’economia e delle aziende cinesi sui mercati del mondo. Ieri Li Keqiang è stato in visita ufficiale a Zagabria dove ha avuto colloqui con la dirigenza croata, a margine dei quali sono stati firmati diversi accordi bilaterali.
Lo scorso anno la società statale cinese China Road and Bridge Corporation (Crbc) si è aggiudicata il contratto per la costruzione del ponte di Peljesac, nel sud della Dalmazia, il più grande progetto infrastrutturale in Croazia il cui valore ammonta a 280 milioni di euro. Per oggi, riferiscono i media, è in programma una visita del premier cinese ai cantieri di questa opera, al cui finanziamento partecipa in larga parte la Ue. Il ponte di Peljesac sarà lungo 2,4 km e avrà un’altezza di 55 metri, con quattro corsie. I tempi di costruzione sono previsti in tre anni. Quello di oggi e domani a Dubrovnik è l’ottavo vertice fra Cina e Paesi Ceec (Central and Eastern European Countries), 11 dei quali sono membri della Ue. Del formato ’16+1′ fanno parte Albania, Bosnia-Erzegovina, Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, Croazia, Montenegro, Macedonia del Nord, Polonia, Ungheria, Repubblica ceca, Slovacchia, Slovenia, Lituania, Lettonia, Estonia»
Della Ceec, il 16+1, ne abbiamo già diffusamente parlato.
«The 16+1 was established in 2012 as a multilateral platform facilitating cooperation between China and 16 Central and Eastern European countries (CEEC).»
«In recent years, the platform’s summits have attracted a lot of attention, especially in Western Europe»
«The intensifying level of engagement between the 16 countries in the CEE region and China has considerably alarmed Brussels and Berlin»
«Many Western European observers and policymakers have raised concerns about the potential risks of growing Chinese presence in Eastern Europe, claiming that Beijing’s major interest in engaging with the region is a part of its long-term strategy to undermine EU unity»
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Basta dare un’occhiata sia pur distratta alla carta geografica, aggiungerci l’Italia, e gli schieramente saltano immediatamente agli occhi.
La Cina in Europa c’è già, e l’Europa si è già divisa.
«Li made clear that projects such as the Chinese-built Peljesac Bridge in Croatia could “inspire future cooperation,” especially for central and eastern European countries hoping to lure investment home»
Gli investimenti cinesi nei paesi dell’est europeo hanno ampiamente superato quelli fatti dall’Unione Europea, che li ha sempre trattati da parenti pover, scagliandosi infine contro di essi perché sono fieri del loro retaggio religioso, storico, culturale e sociale. Si pensi solo alle diatribe ideologiche contro la Polonia e l’Ungheria.
«Greece wants to join a club of eastern European countries looking to deepen ties with China, in a move that highlights Beijing’s growing clout in the bloc despite wariness in Brussels.
Alexis Tsipras, Greece’s prime minister, this month informed the members of the “16+1” group of China and central and eastern European states — 11 of them EU members — of his country’s willingness to join them, according to a letter seen by the Financial Times.
A formal announcement is expected to be made at the group’s annual gathering this week in Croatia, according to a diplomat who will attend the meeting. “The participation of Greece . . . is consistent with the willingness of my country to enhance its role in the region and promote peace and co-development, also on the basis of its strategic co-operation with China,” Mr Tsipras wrote in a letter to Zoran Zaev, prime minister of North Macedonia. ….
The move comes as the European Commission branded Beijing a “systemic rival” and was alarmed by Italy’s decision to become the first G7 country to endorse the Belt and Road Initiative, China’s global infrastructure investment drive. Greece is already part of BRI and has welcomed Chinese investment after being severely hit by the eurozone debt crisis. The Port of Piraeus in Athens is an important container trans-shipment point for Cosco, China’s state shipping company. ….
Since the 16+1 was formed in 2012, Beijing has announced more than $15.4bn worth of investments in the 16 countries, with more than 70 per cent going to the five non-EU members in the group»
Bruxelles non dovrebbe preoccuparsi che arrivino i cinesi: ci sono già.
China’s premier has vowed to respect European Union trade rules, amid fears about preferential treatment for some entities. Brussels is worried Beijing — present at a summit of eastern states — could divide the bloc.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on Friday said that China would “cooperate and respect European standards” at the opening of the eighth annual summit on cooperation between Beijing and eastern European countries in Croatia.
Before a breakthrough earlier this week, leading EU member states — including Germany and France — had expressed concerns that Beijing may attempt to divide the bloc with its separate summit focusing on relations with Europe’s eastern states.
Brussels is particularly worried about European access to Chinese markets. Currently, Chinese companies have greater access to EU markets than their European equivalents. But China has signaled its intention to change that.
“We welcome openness and we want to treat all companies that operate in China equally and to increase imports from the (European) countries,” Li said, using an interpreter. “China is open to the world.”
The project imagines overland and maritime routes linking China to markets across the globe, including Europe, Africa and other parts of Asia. But the initiative has come under scrutiny, in part due to some projects failing to take off or having been scrapped permanently.
But Li made clear that projects such as the Chinese-built Peljesac Bridge in Croatia could “inspire future cooperation,” especially for central and eastern European countries hoping to lure investment home.
“With Greece joining in with all the central and eastern European countries … we will deepen China’s relationship with the EU,” Li said.
Last month, EU Budget Commissioner Günther Oettinger expressed “concern that in Italy and other European countries, infrastructure of strategic importance like power networks, rapid rail lines or harbors are no longer in European but in Chinese hands.”
«China’s on a bullion-buying spree as Asia’s top economy expanded its gold reserves for a fourth straight month, adding to investors’ optimism that central banks from around the world will press on with a drive to build up holdings»
«The People’s Bank of China raised reserves to 60.62 million ounces in March from 60.26 million a month earlier, according to data on its website on Sunday»
«In tonnage terms, last month’s inflow was 11.2 tons, following the addition of 9.95 tons in February, 11.8 tons in January and 9.95 tons in December.»
«The latest data from the PBOC indicate that the country has resumed adding gold to its reserves at a steady pace, much like the period from mid-2015 to October 2016, when the country boosted holdings almost every month»
«Should China continue to accumulate bullion at the current rate over 2019, it may end the year as the top buyer after Russia, which added 274 tons in 2018»
«Governments worldwide added 651.5 tons of bullion in 2018, the second-highest total on record, according to the World Gold Council»
«Russia has quadrupled its reserves within the span of a decade amid President Vladimir Putin’s quest to break the country’s reliance on the dollar»
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Il problema delle riserve auree cinesi è alquanto complesso: da una parte la Banca Centrale rilascia i dati solo quando lo ritenga opportuno, dall’altra assieme alla riserva ufficiale dovrebbe essere conteggiato anche l’oro comprato dai privati. Nella maggior parte delle regioni cinesi, infatti, il possesso di oro monetato o come monile dovrebbe essere denunciato: la proprietà resta ed è garantita tale nel tempo, ma lo stato potrebbe avocarsi il diritto di confiscarlo in caso di particolarissimi eventi. In un certo qual senso, l’oro detenuto dai privati è una specie di estrema riserva di sicurezza.
– Inflows since December increase to 42.9 tons as holdings climb
– Central-bank demand will help to support prices, Goldman says
China’s on a bullion-buying spree as Asia’s top economy expanded its gold reserves for a fourth straight month, adding to investors’ optimism that central banks from around the world will press on with a drive to build up holdings. Prices advanced back toward $1,300 an ounce.
The People’s Bank of China raised reserves to 60.62 million ounces in March from 60.26 million a month earlier, according to data on its website on Sunday. In tonnage terms, last month’s inflow was 11.2 tons, following the addition of 9.95 tons in February, 11.8 tons in January and 9.95 tons in December.
China, the world’s top gold producer and consumer, is facing signs of a slowing economy, even as progress is being made in trade negotiations with the U.S. The latest data from the PBOC indicate that the country has resumed adding gold to its reserves at a steady pace, much like the period from mid-2015 to October 2016, when the country boosted holdings almost every month. Should China continue to accumulate bullion at the current rate over 2019, it may end the year as the top buyer after Russia, which added 274 tons in 2018.
Last year’s bullion buying by emerging-market central banks was the most robust in a long time as countries diversified reserves, Ed Morse, Citigroup Inc.’s global head of commodities research, said in a Bloomberg TV interview on Monday. The bank’s positive on gold, targeting $1,400 by year-end.
Spot gold fell for a second month in March even after the Federal Reserve signaled it would pause rate hikes, which led to a surge in equities instead. Still, the longer-term outlook is more bullish as central-bank demand should help support prices, with inflows running as high as last year, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which expects a rally to $1,450 an ounce over 12 months. Bullion for immediate delivery was at $1,297 on Monday.
Governments worldwide added 651.5 tons of bullion in 2018, the second-highest total on record, according to the World Gold Council. Russia has quadrupled its reserves within the span of a decade amid President Vladimir Putin’s quest to break the country’s reliance on the dollar, and data from the central bank show holdings rose 1 million ounces in February, the most since November.
China has previously gone long periods without revealing increases in gold holdings. When the central bank announced a 57 percent jump in reserves to 53.3 million ounces in mid-2015, it was the first update in six years. The latest pause was from October 2016 until December last year.
The following is the full text of an action plan on the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative issued by the National Development and Reform Commission, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China, with State Council authorization, on March 28.
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More than two millennia ago the diligent and courageous people of Eurasia explored and opened up several routes of trade and cultural exchanges that linked the major civilizations of Asia, Europe and Africa, collectively called the Silk Road by later generations. For thousands of years, the Silk Road Spirit－”peace and cooperation, openness and inclusiveness, mutual learning and mutual benefit”－has been passed from generation to generation, promoted the progress of human civilization, and contributed greatly to the prosperity and development of the countries along the Silk Road. Symbolizing communication and cooperation between the East and the West, the Silk Road Spirit is a historic and cultural heritage shared by all countries around the world.
In the 21st century, a new era marked by the theme of peace, development, cooperation and mutual benefit, it is all the more important for us to carry on the Silk Road Spirit in face of the weak recovery of the global economy, and complex international and regional situations.
When Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Central Asia and Southeast Asia in September and October of 2013, he raised the initiative of jointly building the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road (hereinafter referred to as the Belt and Road), which have attracted close attention from all over the world. At the China-ASEAN Expo in 2013, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang emphasized the need to build the Maritime Silk Road oriented toward ASEAN, and to create strategic propellers for hinterland development. Accelerating the building of the Belt and Road can help promote the economic prosperity of the countries along the Belt and Road and regional economic cooperation, strengthen exchanges and mutual learning between different civilizations, and promote world peace and development. It is a great undertaking that will benefit people around the world.
The Belt and Road Initiative is a systematic project, which should be jointly built through consultation to meet the interests of all, and efforts should be made to integrate the development strategies of the countries along the Belt and Road. The Chinese government has drafted and published the Vision and Actions on Jointly Building Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road to promote the implementation of the Initiative, instill vigor and vitality into the ancient Silk Road, connect Asian, European and African countries more closely and promote mutually beneficial cooperation to a new high and in new forms.
Complex and profound changes are taking place in the world. The underlying impact of the international financial crisis keeps emerging; the world economy is recovering slowly, and global development is uneven; the international trade and investment landscape and rules for multilateral trade and investment are undergoing major adjustments; and countries still face big challenges to their development.
The initiative to jointly build the Belt and Road, embracing the trend toward a multipolar world, economic globalization, cultural diversity and greater IT application, is designed to uphold the global free trade regime and the open world economy in the spirit of open regional cooperation. It is aimed at promoting orderly and free flow of economic factors, highly efficient allocation of resources and deep integration of markets; encouraging the countries along the Belt and Road to achieve economic policy coordination and carry out broader and more in-depth regional cooperation of higher standards; and jointly creating an open, inclusive and balanced regional economic cooperation architecture that benefits all. Jointly building the Belt and Road is in the interests of the world community. Reflecting the common ideals and pursuit of human societies, it is a positive endeavor to seek new models of international cooperation and global governance, and will inject new positive energy into world peace and development.
The Belt and Road Initiative aims to promote the connectivity of Asian, European and African continents and their adjacent seas, establish and strengthen partnerships among the countries along the Belt and Road, set up all-dimensional, multitiered and composite connectivity networks, and realize diversified, independent, balanced and sustainable development in these countries. The connectivity projects of the Initiative will help align and coordinate the development strategies of the countries along the Belt and Road, tap market potential in this region, promote investment and consumption, create demands and job opportunities, enhance people-to-people and cultural exchanges, and mutual learning among the peoples of the relevant countries, and enable them to understand, trust and respect each other and live in harmony, peace and prosperity.
China’s economy is closely connected with the world economy. China will stay committed to the basic policy of opening-up, build a new pattern of all-around opening-up, and integrate itself deeper into the world economic system. The Initiative will enable China to further expand and deepen its opening-up, and to strengthen its mutually beneficial cooperation with countries in Asia, Europe and Africa and the rest of the world. China is committed to shouldering more responsibilities and obligations within its capabilities, and making greater contributions to the peace and development of mankind.
The Belt and Road Initiative is in line with the purposes and principles of the UN Charter. It upholds the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence: mutual respect for each other’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, mutual nonaggression, mutual noninterference in each other’s internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence.
The Initiative is open for cooperation. It covers, but is not limited to, the area of the ancient Silk Road. It is open to all countries, and international and regional organizations for engagement, so that the results of the concerted efforts will benefit wider areas.
The Initiative is harmonious and inclusive. It advocates tolerance among civilizations, respects the paths and modes of development chosen by different countries, and supports dialogues among different civilizations on the principles of seeking common ground while shelving differences and drawing on each other’s strengths, so that all countries can coexist in peace for common prosperity.
The Initiative follows market operation. It will abide by market rules and international norms, give play to the decisive role of the market in resource allocation and the primary role of enterprises, and let the governments perform their due functions.
The Initiative seeks mutual benefit. It accommodates the interests and concerns of all parties involved, and seeks a conjunction of interests and the “biggest common denominator” for cooperation so as to give full play to the wisdom and creativity, strengths and potentials of all parties.
The Belt and Road Initiative is a way for win-win cooperation that promotes common development and prosperity and a road toward peace and friendship by enhancing mutual understanding and trust, and strengthening all-around exchanges. The Chinese government advocates peace and cooperation, openness and inclusiveness, mutual learning and mutual benefit. It promotes practical cooperation in all fields, and works to build a community of shared interests, destiny and responsibility featuring mutual political trust, economic integration and cultural inclusiveness.
The Belt and Road run through the continents of Asia, Europe and Africa, connecting the vibrant East Asia economic circle at one end and developed European economic circle at the other, and encompassing countries with huge potential for economic development. The Silk Road Economic Belt focuses on bringing together China, Central Asia, Russia and Europe (the Baltic); linking China with the Persian Gulf and the Mediterranean Sea through Central Asia and West Asia; and connecting China with Southeast Asia, South Asia and the Indian Ocean. The 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road is designed to go from China’s coast to Europe through the South China Sea and the Indian Ocean in one route, and from China’s coast through the South China Sea to the South Pacific in the other.
On land, the Initiative will focus on jointly building a new Eurasian Land Bridge and developing China-Mongolia-Russia, China-Central Asia-West Asia and China-Indochina Peninsula economic corridors by taking advantage of international transport routes, relying on core cities along the Belt and Road and using key economic industrial parks as cooperation platforms. At sea, the Initiative will focus on jointly building smooth, secure and efficient transport routes connecting major sea ports along the Belt and Road. The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor are closely related to the Belt and Road Initiative, and therefore require closer cooperation and greater progress.
The Initiative is an ambitious economic vision of the opening-up of and cooperation among the countries along the Belt and Road. Countries should work in concert and move toward the objectives of mutual benefit and common security. To be specific, they need to improve the region’s infrastructure, and put in place a secure and efficient network of land, sea and air passages, lifting their connectivity to a higher level; further enhance trade and investment facilitation, establish a network of free trade areas that meet high standards, maintain closer economic ties, and deepen political trust; enhance cultural exchanges; encourage different civilizations to learn from each other and flourish together; and promote mutual understanding, peace and friendship among people of all countries.
Countries along the Belt and Road have their own resource advantages and their economies are mutually complementary. Therefore, there is a great potential and space for cooperation. They should promote policy coordination, facilities connectivity, unimpeded trade, financial integration and people-to-people bonds as their five major goals, and strengthen cooperation in the following key areas:
Enhancing policy coordination is an important guarantee for implementing the Initiative. We should promote intergovernmental cooperation, build a multilevel intergovernmental macro policy exchange and communication mechanism, expand shared interests, enhance mutual political trust, and reach new cooperation consensus. Countries along the Belt and Road may fully coordinate their economic development strategies and policies, work out plans and measures for regional cooperation, negotiate to solve cooperation-related issues, and jointly provide policy support for the implementation of practical cooperation and large-scale projects.
Facilities connectivity is a priority area for implementing the Initiative. On the basis of respecting each other’s sovereignty and security concerns, countries along the Belt and Road should improve the connectivity of their infrastructure construction plans and technical standard systems, jointly push forward the construction of international trunk passageways, and form an infrastructure network connecting all subregions in Asia, and between Asia, Europe and Africa step by step. At the same time, efforts should be made to promote green and low-carbon infrastructure construction and operation management, taking into full account the impact of climate change on the construction.
With regard to transport infrastructure construction, we should focus on the key passageways, junctions and projects, and give priority to linking up unconnected road sections, removing transport bottlenecks, advancing road safety facilities and traffic management facilities and equipment, and improving road network connectivity. We should build a unified coordination mechanism for whole-course transportation, increase connectivity of customs clearance, reloading and multimodal transport between countries, and gradually formulate compatible and standard transport rules, so as to realize international transport facilitation. We should push forward port infrastructure construction, build smooth land-water transportation channels, and advance port cooperation; increase sea routes and the number of voyages, and enhance information technology cooperation in maritime logistics. We should expand and build platforms and mechanisms for comprehensive civil aviation cooperation, and quicken our pace in improving aviation infrastructure.
We should promote cooperation in the connectivity of energy infrastructure, work in concert to ensure the security of oil and gas pipelines and other transport routes, build cross-border power supply networks and power-transmission routes, and cooperate in regional power grid upgrading and transformation.
We should jointly advance the construction of cross-border optical cables and other communications trunk line networks, improve international communications connectivity, and create an Information Silk Road. We should build bilateral cross-border optical cable networks at a quicker pace, plan transcontinental submarine optical cable projects, and improve spatial (satellite) information passageways to expand information exchanges and cooperation.
Investment and trade cooperation is a major task in building the Belt and Road. We should strive to improve investment and trade facilitation, and remove investment and trade barriers for the creation of a sound business environment within the region and in all related countries. We will discuss with countries and regions along the Belt and Road on opening free trade areas so as to unleash the potential for expanded cooperation.
Countries along the Belt and Road should enhance customs cooperation such as information exchange, mutual recognition of regulations, and mutual assistance in law enforcement; improve bilateral and multilateral cooperation in the fields of inspection and quarantine, certification and accreditation, standard measurement, and statistical information; and work to ensure that the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement takes effect and is implemented. We should improve the customs clearance facilities of border ports, establish a “single-window” in border ports, reduce customs clearance costs, and improve customs clearance capability. We should increase cooperation in supply chain safety and convenience, improve the coordination of cross-border supervision procedures, promote online checking of inspection and quarantine certificates, and facilitate mutual recognition of Authorized Economic Operators. We should lower non-tariff barriers, jointly improve the transparency of technical trade measures, and enhance trade liberalization and facilitation.
We should expand trading areas, improve trade structure, explore new growth areas of trade, and promote trade balance. We should make innovations in our forms of trade, and develop cross-border e-commerce and other modern business models. A service trade support system should be set up to consolidate and expand conventional trade, and efforts to develop modern service trade should be strengthened. We should integrate investment and trade, and promote trade through investment.
We should speed up investment facilitation, eliminate investment barriers, and push forward negotiations on bilateral investment protection agreements and double taxation avoidance agreements to protect the lawful rights and interests of investors.
We should expand mutual investment areas, deepen cooperation in agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry and fisheries, agricultural machinery manufacturing and farm produce processing, and promote cooperation in marine-product farming, deep-sea fishing, aquatic product processing, seawater desalination, marine biopharmacy, ocean engineering technology, environmental protection industries, marine tourism and other fields. We should increase cooperation in the exploration and development of coal, oil, gas, metal minerals and other conventional energy sources; advance cooperation in hydropower, nuclear power, wind power, solar power and other clean, renewable energy sources; and promote cooperation in the processing and conversion of energy and resources at or near places where they are exploited, so as to create an integrated industrial chain of energy and resource cooperation. We should enhance cooperation in deep-processing technology, equipment and engineering services in the fields of energy and resources.
We should push forward cooperation in emerging industries. In accordance with the principles of mutual complementarity and mutual benefit, we should promote in-depth cooperation with other countries along the Belt and Road in new-generation information technology, biotechnology, new energy technology, new materials and other emerging industries, and establish entrepreneurial and investment cooperation mechanisms.
We should improve the division of labor and distribution of industrial chains by encouraging the entire industrial chain and related industries to develop in concert; establish R & D, production and marketing systems; and improve industrial supporting capacity and the overall competitiveness of regional industries. We should increase the openness of our service industry to each other to accelerate the development of regional service industries. We should explore a new mode of investment cooperation, working together to build all forms of industrial parks such as overseas economic and trade cooperation zones and cross-border economic cooperation zones, and promote industrial cluster development. We should promote ecological progress in conducting investment and trade, increase cooperation in conserving eco-environment, protecting biodiversity, and tackling climate change, and join hands to make the Silk Road an environment-friendly one.
We welcome companies from all countries to invest in China, and encourage Chinese enterprises to participate in infrastructure construction in other countries along the Belt and Road, and make industrial investments there. We support localized operation and management of Chinese companies to boost the local economy, increase local employment, improve local livelihoods, and take social responsibilities in protecting local biodiversity and eco-environment.
Financial integration is an important underpinning for implementing the Belt and Road Initiative. We should deepen financial cooperation, and make more efforts in building a currency stability system, investment and financing system and credit information system in Asia. We should expand the scope and scale of bilateral currency swap and settlement with other countries along the Belt and Road, open and develop the bond market in Asia, make joint efforts to establish the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and BRICS New Development Bank, conduct negotiation among related parties on establishing Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) financing institution, and set up and put into operation the Silk Road Fund as early as possible. We should strengthen practical cooperation of China-ASEAN Interbank Association and SCO Interbank Association, and carry out multilateral financial cooperation in the form of syndicated loans and bank credit. We will support the efforts of governments of the countries along the Belt and Road and their companies and financial institutions with good credit-rating to issue Renminbi bonds in China. Qualified Chinese financial institutions and companies are encouraged to issue bonds in both Renminbi and foreign currencies outside China, and use the funds thus collected in countries along the Belt and Road.
We should strengthen financial regulation cooperation, encourage the signing of MOUs on cooperation in bilateral financial regulation, and establish an efficient regulation coordination mechanism in the region. We should improve the system of risk response and crisis management, build a regional financial risk early-warning system, and create an exchange and cooperation mechanism of addressing cross-border risks and crisis. We should increase cross-border exchange and cooperation between credit investigation regulators, credit investigation institutions and credit rating institutions. We should give full play to the role of the Silk Road Fund and that of sovereign wealth funds of countries along the Belt and Road, and encourage commercial equity investment funds and private funds to participate in the construction of key projects of the Initiative.
People-to-people bond provides the public support for implementing the Initiative. We should carry forward the spirit of friendly cooperation of the Silk Road by promoting extensive cultural and academic exchanges, personnel exchanges and cooperation, media cooperation, youth and women exchanges and volunteer services, so as to win public support for deepening bilateral and multilateral cooperation.
We should send more students to each other’s countries, and promote cooperation in jointly running schools. China provides 10,000 government scholarships to the countries along the Belt and Road every year. We should hold culture years, arts festivals, film festivals, TV weeks and book fairs in each other’s countries; cooperate on the production and translation of fine films, radio and TV programs; and jointly apply for and protect World Cultural Heritage sites. We should also increase personnel exchange and cooperation between countries along the Belt and Road.
We should enhance cooperation in and expand the scale of tourism; hold tourism promotion weeks and publicity months in each other’s countries; jointly create competitive international tourist routes and products with Silk Road features; and make it more convenient to apply for tourist visa in countries along the Belt and Road. We should push forward cooperation on the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road cruise tourism program. We should carry out sports exchanges and support countries along the Belt and Road in their bid for hosting major international sports events.
We should strengthen cooperation with neighboring countries on epidemic information sharing, the exchange of prevention and treatment technologies and the training of medical professionals, and improve our capability to jointly address public health emergencies. We will provide medical assistance and emergency medical aid to relevant countries, and carry out practical cooperation in maternal and child health, disability rehabilitation, and major infectious diseases including AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. We will also expand cooperation on traditional medicine.
We should increase our cooperation in science and technology, establish joint labs (or research centers), international technology transfer centers and maritime cooperation centers, promote sci-tech personnel exchanges, cooperate in tackling key sci-tech problems, and work together to improve sci-tech innovation capability.
We should integrate existing resources to expand and advance practical cooperation between countries along the Belt and Road on youth employment, entrepreneurship training, vocational skill development, social security management, public administration and management and in other areas of common interest.
We should give full play to the bridging role of communication between political parties and parliaments, and promote friendly exchanges between legislative bodies, major political parties and political organizations of countries along the Belt and Road. We should carry out exchanges and cooperation among cities, encourage major cities in these countries to become sister cities, focus on promoting practical cooperation, particularly cultural and people-to-people exchanges, and create more lively examples of cooperation. We welcome the think tanks in the countries along the Belt and Road to jointly conduct research and hold forums.
We should increase exchanges and cooperation between nongovernmental organizations of countries along the Belt and Road, organize public interest activities concerning education, healthcare, poverty reduction, biodiversity and ecological protection for the benefit of the general public, and improve the production and living conditions of poverty-stricken areas along the Belt and Road. We should enhance international exchanges and cooperation on culture and media, and leverage the positive role of the Internet and new media tools to foster harmonious and friendly cultural environment and public opinion.
The world economic integration is accelerating and regional cooperation is on the upswing. China will take full advantage of the existing bilateral and multilateral cooperation mechanisms to push forward the building of the Belt and Road and to promote the development of regional cooperation.
We should strengthen bilateral cooperation, and promote comprehensive development of bilateral relations through multilevel and multichannel communication and consultation. We should encourage the signing of cooperation MOUs or plans, and develop a number of bilateral cooperation pilot projects. We should establish and improve bilateral joint working mechanisms, and draw up implementation plans and road maps for advancing the Belt and Road Initiative. In addition, we should give full play to the existing bilateral mechanisms such as joint committee, mixed committee, coordinating committee, steering committee and management committee to coordinate and promote the implementation of cooperation projects.
We should enhance the role of multilateral cooperation mechanisms, make full use of existing mechanisms such as the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), ASEAN Plus China (10+1), Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM), Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD), Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA), China-Arab States Cooperation Forum (CASCF), China-Gulf Cooperation Council Strategic Dialogue, Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) Economic Cooperation, and Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) to strengthen communication with relevant countries, and attract more countries and regions to participate in the Belt and Road Initiative.
We should continue to encourage the constructive role of the international forums and exhibitions at regional and subregional levels hosted by countries along the Belt and Road, as well as such platforms as Boao Forum for Asia, China-ASEAN Expo, China-Eurasia Expo, Euro-Asia Economic Forum, China International Fair for Investment and Trade, China-South Asia Expo, China-Arab States Expo, Western China International Fair, China-Russia Expo, and Qianhai Cooperation Forum. We should support the local authorities and general public of countries along the Belt and Road to explore the historical and cultural heritage of the Belt and Road, jointly hold investment, trade and cultural exchange activities, and ensure the success of the Silk Road (Dunhuang) International Culture Expo, Silk Road International Film Festival and Silk Road International Book Fair. We propose to set up an international summit forum on the Belt and Road Initiative.
China’s Regions in Pursuing Opening-Up
In advancing the Belt and Road Initiative, China will fully leverage the comparative advantages of its various regions, adopt a proactive strategy of further opening-up, strengthen interaction and cooperation among the eastern, western and central regions, and comprehensively improve the openness of the Chinese economy.
Northwestern and northeastern regions. We should make good use of Xinjiang’s geographic advantages and its role as a window of westward opening-up to deepen communication and cooperation with Central, South and West Asian countries, make it a key transportation, trade, logistics, culture, science and education center, and a core area on the Silk Road Economic Belt. We should give full scope to the economic and cultural strengths of Shaanxi and Gansu provinces and the ethnic and cultural advantages of the Ningxia Hui autonomous region and Qinghai province, build Xi’an into a new focus of reform and opening-up in China’s interior, speed up the development and opening-up of cities such as Lanzhou and Xining, and advance the building of the Ningxia Inland Opening-up Pilot Economic Zone with the goal of creating strategic channels, trade and logistics hubs and key bases for industrial and cultural exchanges opening to Central, South and West Asian countries. We should give full play to Inner Mongolia’s proximity to Mongolia and Russia, improve the railway links connecting Heilongjiang province with Russia and the regional railway network, strengthen cooperation between China’s Heilongjiang, Jilin and Liaoning provinces and Russia’s Far East region on sea-land multimodal transport, and advance the construction of an Eurasian high-speed transport corridor linking Beijing and Moscow with the goal of building key windows opening to the north.
Southwestern region. We should give full play to the unique advantage of Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region as a neighbor of ASEAN countries, speed up the opening-up and development of the Beibu Gulf Economic Zone and the Pearl River-Xijiang Economic Zone, build an international corridor opening to the ASEAN region, create new strategic anchors for the opening-up and development of the southwest and mid-south regions of China, and form an important gateway connecting the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road. We should make good use of the geographic advantage of Yunnan province, advance the construction of an international transport corridor connecting China with neighboring countries, develop a new highlight of economic cooperation in the Greater Mekong Subregion, and make the region a pivot of China’s opening-up to South and Southeast Asia. We should promote the border trade and tourism and culture cooperation between Tibet autonomous region and neighboring countries such as Nepal.
Coastal regions, and Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan. We should leverage the strengths of the Yangtze River Delta, Pearl River Delta, west coast of the Taiwan Straits, Bohai Rim, and other areas with economic zones boasting a high level of openness, robust economic strengths and strong catalytic role, speed up the development of the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone, and support Fujian province in becoming a core area of the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road. We should give full scope to the role of Qianhai (Shenzhen), Nansha (Guangzhou), Hengqin (Zhuhai) and Pingtan (Fujian) in opening-up and cooperation, deepen their cooperation with Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, and help to build the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Big Bay Area. We should promote the development of the Zhejiang Marine Economy Development Demonstration Zone, Fujian Marine Economic Pilot Zone and Zhoushan Archipelago New Area, and further open Hainan province as an international tourism island. We should strengthen the port construction of coastal cities such as Shanghai, Tianjin, Ningbo-Zhoushan, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhanjiang, Shantou, Qingdao, Yantai, Dalian, Fuzhou, Xiamen, Quanzhou, Haikou and Sanya, and strengthen the functions of international hub airports such as Shanghai and Guangzhou. We should use opening-up to motivate these areas to carry out deeper reform, create new systems and mechanisms of open economy, step up scientific and technological innovation, develop new advantages for participating in and leading international cooperation and competition, and become the pacesetter and main force in the Belt and Road Initiative, particularly the building of the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road. We should leverage the unique role of overseas Chinese and the Hong Kong and Macao Special Administrative Regions, and encourage them to participate in and contribute to the Belt and Road Initiative. We should also make proper arrangements for the Taiwan region to be part of this effort.
Inland regions. We should make use of the advantages of inland regions, including a vast landmass, rich human resources and a strong industrial foundation, focus on such key regions as the city clusters along the middle reaches of the Yangtze River, around Chengdu and Chongqing, in central Henan province, around Hohhot, Baotou, Erdos and Yulin, and around Harbin and Changchun to propel regional interaction and cooperation and industrial concentration. We should build Chongqing into an important pivot for developing and opening up the western region, and make Chengdu, Zhengzhou, Wuhan, Changsha, Nanchang and Hefei leading areas of opening-up in the inland regions. We should accelerate cooperation between regions on the upper and middle reaches of the Yangtze River and their counterparts along Russia’s Volga River. We should set up coordination mechanisms in terms of railway transport and port customs clearance for the China-Europe corridor, cultivate the brand of “China-Europe freight trains,” and construct a cross-border transport corridor connecting the eastern, central and western regions. We should support inland cities such as Zhengzhou and Xi’an in building airports and international land ports, strengthen customs clearance cooperation between inland ports and ports in the coastal and border regions, and launch pilot e-commerce services for cross-border trade. We should optimize the layout of special customs oversight areas, develop new models of processing trade, and deepen industrial cooperation with countries along the Belt and Road.
China in Action
For more than a year, the Chinese government has been actively promoting the building of the Belt and Road, enhancing communication and consultation and advancing practical cooperation with countries along the Belt and Road, and introduced a series of policies and measures for early outcomes.
High-level guidance and facilitation. President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang have visited over 20 countries, attended the Dialogue on Strengthening Connectivity Partnership and the sixth ministerial conference of the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum, and met with leaders of relevant countries to discuss bilateral relations and regional development issues. They have used these opportunities to explain the rich contents and positive implications of the Belt and Road Initiative, and their efforts have helped bring about a broad consensus on the Belt and Road Initiative.
Signing cooperation framework. China has signed MOUs of cooperation on the joint development of the Belt and Road with some countries, and on regional cooperation and border cooperation and mid-and long-term development plans for economic and trade cooperation with some neighboring countries. It has proposed outlines of regional cooperation plans with some adjacent countries.
Promoting project cooperation. China has enhanced communication and consultation with countries along the Belt and Road, and promoted a number of key cooperation projects in the fields of infrastructure connectivity, industrial investment, resource development, economic and trade cooperation, financial cooperation, cultural exchanges, ecological protection and maritime cooperation where the conditions are right.
Improving policies and measures. The Chinese government will integrate its domestic resources to provide stronger policy support for the Initiative. It will facilitate the establishment of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank. China has proposed the Silk Road Fund, and the investment function of the China-Eurasia Economic Cooperation Fund will be reinforced. We will encourage bank card clearing institutions to conduct cross-border clearing operations, and payment institutions to conduct cross-border payment business. We will actively promote investment and trade facilitation, and accelerate the reform of integrated regional customs clearance.
Boosting the role of cooperation platforms. A number of international summits, forums, seminars and expos on the theme of the Belt and Road Initiative have been held, which have played an important role in increasing mutual understanding, reaching consensus and deepening cooperation.
Embracing a Brighter Future Together
Though proposed by China, the Belt and Road Initiative is a common aspiration of all countries along their routes. China is ready to conduct equal-footed consultation with all countries along the Belt and Road to seize the opportunity provided by the Initiative, promote opening-up, communication and integration among countries in a larger scope, with higher standards and at deeper levels, while giving consideration to the interests and aspirations of all parties. The development of the Belt and Road is open and inclusive, and we welcome the active participation of all countries and international and regional organizations in this Initiative.
The development of the Belt and Road should mainly be conducted through policy communication and objectives coordination. It is a pluralistic and open process of cooperation which can be highly flexible, and does not seek conformity. China will join other countries along the Belt and Road to substantiate and improve the content and mode of the Belt and Road cooperation, work out relevant timetables and road maps, and align national development programs and regional cooperation plans.
China will work with countries along the Belt and Road to carry out joint research, forums and fairs, personnel training, exchanges and visits under the framework of existing bilateral, multilateral, regional and subregional cooperation mechanisms, so that they will gain a better understanding and recognition of the contents, objectives and tasks of the Belt and Road Initiative.
China will work with countries along the Belt and Road to steadily advance demonstration projects, jointly identify programs that accommodate bilateral and multilateral interests, and accelerate the launching of programs that are agreed upon by parties and ready for implementation, so as to ensure early harvest.
The Belt and Road cooperation features mutual respect and trust, mutual benefit and win-win cooperation, and mutual learning between civilizations. As long as all countries along the Belt and Road make concerted efforts to pursue our common goal, there will be bright prospects for the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road, and the people of countries along the Belt and Road can all benefit from this Initiative.
L’8 ed il 9 maggio 1997 alcuni irredentisti occuparono il campanile di San Marco a Venezia. Arrestati, andarono a processo con la pesantissima accusa di “associazione eversiva dell’ordine costituzionale democratico” e condannati a pesanti pene detentive. Poi, dopo penosi iter giudiziari, durati oltre un decennio, la Suprema Corte di Cassazione rese ragione agli accusati.
All’epoca nessuno, o quasi nessuno, trovò qualcosa a ridire che lo stato italiano avesse difeso la propria integrità territoriale.
Di questi tempi sta iniziando un’altra procedura giudiziaria per un caso analogo, mutatis mutandis.
«Inizia a Madrid il processo ai leader indipendentisti della Catalogna accusati di ribellione contro lo Stato spagnolo per aver organizzato il referendum sulla secessione (nell’ottobre del 2017) e per essere poi arrivati alla proclamazione unilaterale della Repubblica indipendente. Sono dodici gli imputati che si presenteranno davanti al Tribunal Supremo espanol e nove di loro sono in carcere da sedici mesi in attesa del giudizio. Altri sei esponenti del fronte indipendentista verranno invece processati per disobbedienza dal Tribunal Superior de Justicia de Cataluna.»
Anche in questo caso lo stato è intervenuto dapprima con l’esercito e quindi con il potere giudiziario per reprimere un tentativo scissionistico.
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Di recente, una corte di giustizia cine ha sentenziato come colpevoli persone che avevano svolto manifestazioni anche violente al fine di ottenere la indipendenza di Hong Kong dalla Cina.
Una situazione del tutto simile a quella di Venezia oppure a quella di Barcellona.
Eppure i media sono insorti.
«Nine pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong have been found guilty of public nuisance charges for their role in a civil disobedience movement that called for free elections in the city.»
«Among them are three prominent activists, seen as figureheads of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement»
«Thousands marched demanding the right for Hong Kong to choose its own leader»
«It cannot be reasonably argued that a charge of conspiracy to cause public nuisance would generate a chilling effect in society»
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«The former British colony was handed back in 1997 on condition it would retain “a high degree of autonomy, except in foreign and defence affairs” for 50 years»
I media liberal hanno il vezzo di usare parole gravide di significati. Quei protestatari sono denominati come difensori della democrazia: “pro-democracy activists“. In altri termini, definiscono antidemocratico l’attuale sistema politico che governa Hong Kong, mentre i protestatari avrebbero avuto la intenzione di ripristinare la democrazia.
Peccato però che ad Hong Kong vi sia un Consiglio Legislativo, elettivo.
«Il Consiglio legislativo della Regione Amministrativa Speciale di Hong Kong è la l’assemblea parlamentare monocamerale della Regione Amministrativa Speciale di Hong Kong della Repubblica Popolare Cinese.
L’assemblea è un corpo semi-democratico che comprende 70 membri, 35 dei quali eletti direttamente attraverso cinque circoscrizioni geografiche nell’ambito del sistema proporzionale con il metodo del maggior resto, mentre gli altri 35 sono eletti indirettamente attraverso collegi professionali sulla base di elettorati limitati.» [Fonte]
In seno a tale consesso, eletto sulla falsariga del metodo usato per eleggere il senato francese, quello olandese e quello tedesco – stati che difficilmente potrebbero essere definiti come anti-democratici – siedono al momento 22 parlamentari indipendentisti, sia pure con differenti sfumature.
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Ogni nazione si dota di un apparato politico e di un’organizzazione di governo consona con le proprie tradizioni, e l’uso del suffragio universale e del parlamentarismo non è poi così generalizzato come potrebbe a prima vista sembrare.
I sudditi di Sua Maestà Britannica votano per collegi uninominali, e nessuno si sogna di etichettare tale procedura come antidemocratica.
Similmente, il presidente degli Stati Uniti è eletto dai Delegati, non dai cittadini: non segue quindi l’attribuzione della vittoria in base ad un criterio proporzionale.
Un caso unico al mondo è infine la Svizzera, che non è dotata di un governo, bensì di un Direttorio.
«In Svizzera, il Consiglio federale è eletto dall’Assemblea federale (Parlamento), a camere riunite. L’elezione avviene generalmente ogni quattro anni nel mese di dicembre, durante la sessione che segue il rinnovo integrale del Consiglio nazionale. In caso di dimissioni di un consigliere federale può tuttavia esser necessario organizzare un’elezione in qualsiasi momento nel corso della legislatura. ….
Al momento dell’elezione, il parlamento deve garantire un’equa rappresentanza delle varie regioni del Paese e delle comunità linguistiche. Non sono previste regole precise a questo proposito» [Portale del Governo Svizzero]
È usuale che tutti i partiti maggiori abbiano un membro nel Direttorio.
* * *
Orbene, non sembrerebbe di riscontrare nel governo di Hong Kong un alcunché di antidemocratico.
A large crowd gathered outside the court on Thursday to support them. It is not yet clear when they will be sentenced.
Like just another day
By Martin Yip, BBC News Chinese, Hong Kong
The nine defendants walked into the court building looking refreshed and in high spirits. All but one said a few words in what might have been their last hours of freedom before their predicted jail term.
Delivering his verdict, Justice Johnny Chan said the defendants had caused a nuisance – by occupying major roads – leading to injuries among civilians. The nine looked calm and not particularly emotional. They were later released on bail. Benny Tai, Chan Kin-man and Chu Yiu-ming smiled as they passed me, as if it was just another day.
They are yet to say if they will appeal. The court was adjourned for the day as the lawyers are yet to finish their mitigation submissions. The sentences have yet to be announced.
The broader pro-democracy camp already has bad relations with Beijing. Activists and politicians did express their anger but political analysts also warn that people might simply leave the movement out of frustration.
“Some people might feel dispirited and helpless. I hope they can see that other people haven’t given up,” Benny Tai told BBC News Chinese ahead of today’s verdict.
Seventy nine days of sit-in protests have already changed Hong Kong a lot. But today’s verdict might serve more as a reminder that this city remains divided.
What has the reaction been?
At the trial Judge Johnny Chan rejected the idea that this would have a substantial impact on society.
“It cannot be reasonably argued that a charge of conspiracy to cause public nuisance would generate a chilling effect in society,” he wrote in his ruling.
But rights groups criticised the ruling, with Humans Rights Watch saying the court was “sending a terrible message”.
“[This] will likely embolden the government to prosecute more peaceful activists, further chilling free expression in Hong Kong,” said researcher Maya Wang in a statement to the BBC.
Lord Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong, released a statement saying that it was “appallingly divisive to use anachronistic common law charges in a vengeful pursuit of political events which took place in 2014”.
This verdict comes after a string of frustrations for pro-democracy activists. In the last few years the courts have removed six lawmakers for changing their swearing in oaths to include protest phrases. Others have also been disqualified from running for office.
What were the protests about?
The protests started in reaction to a decision made by China that it would allow direct elections in 2017, but only from a list of candidates pre-approved by Beijing.
Beijing is highly sensitive about Hong Kong’s status and any calls for more autonomy from China.
The former British colony was handed back in 1997 on condition it would retain “a high degree of autonomy, except in foreign and defence affairs” for 50 years.
Many people in Hong Kong believe they should have the right to elect their own leader.
Si è aperto il summit tra Mr Li, Mr Juncker e Mr Tusk.
Come si vede dalla fotografia, pur essendo Mr Juncker e Mr Tusk equiparati a capi di stato, la Cina era presente con il suo primo ministro: sbavatura sostanziale ai comuni protocolli diplomatici. Capi di stato ricevono capi di stato.
È uno dei modi cinesi per ricordare come stiano le cose.
Subito gli eventi lieti. Mr Juncker barcollava per gli evidenti segni della sciatica alcolica che lo affligge da anni, la voce era abburattata, ma questa volta però non ha urinato sulle parti della sala riunione. Ma c’è ancora tempo.
«The “distortive” effects of China’s economic policies and growing power top the agenda on the final day of the EU summit. Leaders are looking for ways to counter what they describe as a “systemic rival.
European leaders are set to sign off on a 10-point plan regarding relations with China at the EU summit Friday.
In the face of China’s growing economic and political influence, Brussels is seeking a “more realistic” and “assertive” approach towards what the bloc describes as both a “partner” and a “systemic rival” due to China’s tightly controlled market.”
The strategy formulated by the EU includes:
– protection against “unfair practices of third countries and investments that threaten security or public order”
– a more “balanced and reciprocal economic relationship” including a reform of the World Trade Organization (WTO)
– addressing the “distortive effects of foreign state ownership and state financing”
– reciprocal access to public procurement markets
-strengthening cooperation on climate change and in international organizations».
* * * * * * *
Con questi presupposti non si poteva attendere altro che dichiarazioni di intenti.
Poi, forse, potrebbe anche maturare qualcosa di più consistente, ma Mr Li sa bene come questa dirigenza europea stia volgendo a termine mandato.
The annual summit comes a month after the European Commission branded Beijing a “systemic rival” over what they said were unfair trade practices, and amid an ongoing US trade war with China.
The main takeaways from the summit:
In a seven-page joint declaration that was signed after last-minute negotiations, Brussels and Beijing agreed to the following changes:
– A commitment toward “broader” and “non-discriminatory” market access, in wording that the EU saw as a shift from China on opening up its economy.
– On surrendering intellectual property to gain access to China’s market, both sides agreed “there should not be a forced transfer of technology.”
– Increase efforts to strengthen international rules against state subsidies for industries.
Equal treatment’ for European companies
Speaking after the summit in Brussels, Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang said that European companies will enjoy “equal treatment” in China.
“We will not treat EU companies, especially those registered in China, with discriminatory policy, including solely foreign-owned companies in China,” Li said. “And likewise Chinese companies should not be discriminated against in their operation in the European Union, he added.
European Council President Donald Tusk hailed China’s signing of the joint statement as a “breakthrough,” particularly Beijing’s commitment to strengthen rules against industrial subsidies.
“This is a breakthrough. For the first time China has agree to engage with Europe on this key WTO reform,” Tusk said.
Concerns over China’s influence
The EU has grown increasingly concerned about Chinese state-led companies buying key European assets, while the level of market openness is not reciprocated in China.
Politicians and businesses in the EU and the United States have criticized China for forcing foreign companies to hand over intellectual property in order to gain access to China’s economy — which is the second largest in the world.
Beijing has repeatedly pledged to open up its economy to foreign companies and investors, but critics say that China hasn’t done much to fulfill this promise.
High stakes talks: The EU is China’s biggest trading partner, with two-way trade between the bloc and China worth around €575 billion ($648 billion) annually. The stakes were high for the EU as well, as China is the bloc’s second-biggest trading partner, coming in only after the US.
What happens next: Prime Minister Li will now head to Croatia for another European summit in Croatia on Thursday and Friday with the so-called 16+1 summit. The meeting grants central and eastern European states the chance to meet alone with Beijing, in a move that has garnered criticism from other European countries.
China’s Li Keqiang has attempted to quell European skepticism towards China’s investment approach ahead of this week’s EU-China summit. Some fear projects like the Belt and Road initiative aim to bind countries to China.
China is prepared to “further develop its cooperation” with Europe “to build an open world economy,” Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang said in an op-ed published in business daily Handelsblatt on Monday.
“China is ready to work with Europe to promote a mutual opening and a fair and equitable business environment for enhanced cooperation between firms on both sides,” Li said.
Li said China intends to “further develop its cooperation” with Europe over the maintenance of the Paris Climate Agreement and the Iran Nuclear Deal, the fight against terrorism and reforming the World Trade Organization (WTO).
China and the European Union are set to hold a summit on Tuesday on trade relations and global governance.
‘United and prosperous Europe’
Some Europeans worry that China is taking a “divide and conquer” approach to the EU. Those fears were enhanced by trade agreements struck with the 16 countries comprising the Central and Eastern European Cooperation (CEEC) last year and recent nonbinding agreements with some EU countries as part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative, an industrial investment project spearheaded by President Xi Jinping.
But Li said the China-CEEC cooperation “is beneficial to balanced development within the EU, serves to bring unity to the EU and is a useful compliment to relations between China and Europe.”
“We strongly support the European integration process in the hope of a united and prosperous Europe,” Li added.
Fears over ‘New Silk Road’
China has made a strong push to expand their Belt and Road Initiative to Europe. In March, Italy became the first G7 country to join the scheme. Xi has also sought to recruit France for the initiative.
However, since its inception in 2013, the Belt and Road Initiative has drawn complaints that it racks up huge debts and leaves nations reliant on China. Some countries, such as Malaysia, have cancelled plans to join the project. Others are also critical of how China forces foreign businesses to relinquish trade secrets to do business within its borders.
Germany’s Manfred Weber, who aims to succeed European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, has cautioned that the bloc should not be naive in its approach to China. He believes that the Belt and Road Initiative has “political motivation” to leave countries beholden to China.
The European Commission has also recently labeled China a “systemic rival” and an economic competitor. Günther Oettinger, Germany’s EU commissioner, has even called for EU veto rights over China’s attempts to commandeer European infrastructure projects.
«Nel 2008 l’eurozona aveva un pil di 14,113 miliardi Usd, ma a fine 2017 aveva registrato un pil di 12,589 miliardi Usd; la Cina, nello stesso arco temporale, era passata da un pil di 4,804 miliardi Usd ad un valore di 12,237 miliardi Usd. Per quanto riguarda il pil espresso in valori assoluti, e non relativi al potere di acquisto, la Cina a fine 2017 eguagliava l’eurozona.
Nelle proiezioni al 2023 la Cina dovrebbe arrivare ad un pil ppa di 37,067 miliardi Usd, mentre l’eurozona rende conto di un pil ppa di 18,413 miliardi Usd: il 10.34% del valore mondiale. Troppo poco per contare realmente, troppo poco per poter dettare condizioni.»
Questi numeri forniti dall’International Monetary Fund dovrebbero esprimere chiaramente i rapporti di forza economica che intercorrono tra Unione Europea e Cina.
È l’Unione Europea che ha bisogno della Cina, non la Cina che abbia bisogno dell’Unione Europea.
Questo potrebbe sicuramente essere un dato di fatto difficilmente digeribile, ma è realtà di cui sarebbe utile prenderne atto.
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Sono in corso colloqui tra Unione Europea e Cina per trovare un accordo commerciale, ed a breve dovrebbe tenersi un summit: il 9 aprile.
Mr Xi ha già fatto un viaggio in Europa, stringendo accordi bilaterali con l’Italia e con la Francia. Un summit con l’attuale dirigenze europea a fine mandato sembrerebbe non essere stato proficuo.
Al momento i principali ostacoli sono da parte dell’Unione Europea.
«EU, China stumble over trade, human rights ahead of summit»
«Tensions over trade, investments and minority rights are preventing China and the EU from agreeing a joint declaration at a summit next week»
«Alarmed by potential Chinese dominance of strategic European industries, EU leaders last month sought to prepare for the April 9 summit»
«China had not met EU hopes that it would open its markets, nor seriously committed to reforms of global trade rules.»
«The intensification of EU diplomacy since March reflects frustration over China’s reluctance to allow foreign companies to set up there without restrictions while taking full advantage of the EU’s openness»
«The EU-China relationship, which is bound by 1 billion euros ($1.12 billion) in daily trade, has survived previous spats, notably in 2016 and 2017 when differences over the South China Sea and trade meant there were no communiques»
Cerchiamo di ragionare.
Dei così detti ‘human right’ nessuno sembrerebbe interessarsene, al di là dei roboanti enunciati. L’Unione Europea è invece preoccupata che la Cina possa prendere una posizione predominante e non apra alle imprese europee così come l’Unione vorrebbe.
La risposta cinese è stata quasi immediata ed in stile prettamente sinico.
Pur di commerciare, i cinesi sarebbero disposti ad impagliare la madre.
«China wants to work with the European Union on issues from climate change to trade»
«the Chinese Premier denied accusations Beijing was trying to split the bloc by investing in eastern European states.»
«Concerned by potential Chinese dominance of strategic European industries, the EU is trying to coax Beijing to open up its markets and has tried to get it to commit to removing what Brussels sees as unfair barriers to trade»
«Li wrote that China was ready to work closely with Europe in upholding the Paris Climate Agreement, supporting sustainable development, retaining the international nuclear deal with Iran and fighting terrorism»
«an impression in Brussels that Beijing has not kept its promise to stand up for free trade»
La Cina si è detta prontissima a collaborare per il ‘clima’, per l’Accordo di Parigi, per supportare le energie rinnovabili, persino per sostenere l’accordo nucleare con l’Iran, e così via.
Mai, sempre dicono i cinesi, era stata loro lontanissima idea, utilizzare il Belt and Ros o la nuova via della seta per egemonizzare l’Europa orientale e mediterranea: ci mancherebbe altro!
Tanto, nella riunione del 9 aprile, i cinesi sanno benissimo come questa Commissione Europea sia a fine mandato.
China wants to work with the European Union on issues from climate change to trade, Premier Li Keqiang wrote in a German newspaper before a summit next week aimed at cementing ties.
Diplomats in Brussels have said that tensions over trade, investments and minority rights mean China and the EU may fail to agree a joint declaration at the April 9 summit. That could dent European efforts to gain greater access to Chinese markets.
In a column for Monday’s edition of Handelsblatt, extracts of which were released on Sunday, the Chinese Premier denied accusations Beijing was trying to split the bloc by investing in eastern European states.
“We emphatically support the European integration process in the hope of a united and prosperous Europe,” wrote Li. He said Beijing’s close cooperation with eastern European states was “advantageous for a balanced development within the EU”.
Concerned by potential Chinese dominance of strategic European industries, the EU is trying to coax Beijing to open up its markets and has tried to get it to commit to removing what Brussels sees as unfair barriers to trade.
Li wrote that China was ready to work closely with Europe in upholding the Paris Climate Agreement, supporting sustainable development, retaining the international nuclear deal with Iran and fighting terrorism.
He also said it wanted to exchange views on reforming the World Trade Organization.
The EU is China’s largest trading partner. An increase in Chinese takeovers in critical sectors in Europe and an impression in Brussels that Beijing has not kept its promise to stand up for free trade has complicated talks before the summit.
Tensions over trade, investments and minority rights are preventing China and the EU from agreeing a joint declaration at a summit next week, multiple sources in Brussels said on Friday, sapping a European push for greater access to Chinese markets.
Alarmed by potential Chinese dominance of strategic European industries, EU leaders last month sought to prepare for the April 9 summit – flagged as an opportunity to cement bilateral ties – by agreeing what they said was a more assertive stance toward Beijing.
By diplomatic convention, joint statements are issued at the conclusion of high-profile bilateral summits to formalize policy.
Donald Tusk, the head of the European Council, has recommended rejecting the statement as it stands, according to an EU source. China had not met EU hopes that it would open its markets, nor seriously committed to reforms of global trade rules.
According to an early draft put forward by the European Union and seen by Reuters, Beijing would be bound into completing talks on an investment agreement and committing to remove what the EU says are unfair barriers to trade.
The EU also wants to show the United States that the trade war route is not the only way to coax Beijing to open up.
But Chinese officials have removed or changed many of those references, the EU diplomats said, raising the embarrassing probability of no communique at all after Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and European Council President Donald Tusk have met.
Envoys for EU nations including Britain, Germany and France said they could not back the communique on the basis of China’s changes, an EU official said.
Other EU references to reassure Europeans that China is committed to confronting attacks by computer hackers and improving religious freedoms for the Muslim Uighur minority are also proving very difficult, the diplomats said.
“We wanted to be clear on how we want to work with China, not issue a meaningless document,” a senior EU diplomat said.
Another said there would be no statement without a change in stance from Beijing.
The Chinese foreign ministry was not immediately available for comment. Vice Foreign Minister Wang Chao told reporters this week that both sides were working to reach a consensus.
Negotiations with the Chinese would continue until Tuesday.
The intensification of EU diplomacy since March reflects frustration over China’s reluctance to allow foreign companies to set up there without restrictions while taking full advantage of the EU’s openness, EU diplomats say.
A surge of Chinese takeovers in critical sectors in Europe and an impression in Brussels that Beijing has not kept its promise to stand up for free trade and globalization have given the April meeting new urgency.
The EU-China relationship, which is bound by 1 billion euros ($1.12 billion) in daily trade, has survived previous spats, notably in 2016 and 2017 when differences over the South China Sea and trade meant there were no communiques.
However, after a collective re-evaluation of Chinese policy by EU leaders on March 21, the six-page April 9 statement was meant to coax Beijing into making good on promises to deepen trade ties.
«China’s foreign exchange reserves rose by USD 2.26 billion from a month earlier to USD 3.090 trillion in February 2019, beating market expectations of USD 3.087 trillion. It was the fourth straight month of increases as the yuan gained 0.1 percent against the dollar in February, amid growing optimism over US-China trade negotiations. The value of gold reserves rose slightly to USD 79.498 billion from USD 79.319 billion at the end of January. Foreign Exchange Reserves in China averaged 1013826.48 USD Million from 1980 until 2019, reaching an all time high of 3993212.72 USD Million in June of 2014 and a record low of 2262 USD Million in December of 1980.»
L’intesa commerciale Roma-Pechino, con l’adesione dell’Italia alla nuova “Via della Seta”, è vista favorevolmente dalla maggioranza assoluta degli italiani. 3 su 10 non la condividono, mentre il 19 per cento non esprime un’opinione in materia. È il dato che emerge da un sondaggio condotto dall’Istituto Demopolis in occasione del viaggio in Italia del presidente cinese Xi Jinping.
“L’opinione pubblica – spiega il direttore di Demopolis Pietro Vento – si divide sui rapporti con la Cina. Tra le ragioni a favore della scelta del Governo Conte, centrali appaiono due motivazioni: il 43% ricorda chel’Italia ha bisogno di investimenti esteri e di una maggiore centralità nel Mediterraneo, il 35% segnala che potrebbe essere un’occasione per rafforzare l’espansione del Made in Italy in nuovi mercati. Sul fronte opposto, 4 intervistati su 10 evidenziano i rischi della concorrenza delle merci cinesi a basso costo; uno su tre teme il controllo su alcuni porti italiani, mentre il 27 per cento preferirebbe evitare tensioni con gli Usa e i partner dell’Unione Europea”.
Interessante, nell’analisi dell’Istituto Demopolis, è la differenziazione delle posizioni degli elettori dei principali partiti. Più favorevole appare chi vota il Movimento 5 Stelle: i due terzi condividono l’adesione alla Via della Seta; un giudizio positivo arriva anche da poco più del 50% degli elettori della Lega. Più critico chi si colloca nell’area dell’opposizione: propenso all’accordo con la Cina si dichiara il 41% di chi vota il PD ed appena un elettore su tre di Forza Italia.
Dopo i recenti anni di crisi, l’opinione pubblica manifesta un’apertura a nuovi rapporti commerciali del nostro Paese, ma sempre all’insegna di una prudenza nei delicati equilibri geo-politici. Il 54% degli italiani, intervistati da Demopolis per il programma Otto e Mezzo, ritiene auspicabile il rafforzamento delle relazioni economiche dell’Italia con la Cina e la Russia, ma nel rispetto delle relazioni euro-atlantiche e dell’alleanza con gli Stati Uniti.
Si deve ammettere che Deng Xiaoping quaranta anni fa aveva visto ben lontano, quando aveva detto che la Cina avrebbe solo dovuto aspettare per avere il dominio del Mar del Giappone, del Mar Giallo e del Mare Cinese Orientale.
Prima, guardiamo con molta attenzione la carta geografica.
Giappone, Korea del Sud, Taiwan ed Hong Kong costituiscono punti geografici che la Cina da sempre avrebbe voluto possedere. Taiwan poi è per la Cina una pulpite purulenta.
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Adesso, leggiamoci i dati della seguente tabella, che riporta il tasso di fertilità di questi paesi.
Korea del Sud 1.27
Hong Kong 1.2
Basta avere pazienza ancora trenta anni, una generazione, e questi paesi sono destinati a scomparire dalla faccia della terra.
A quel tempo, la Cina se li potrà occupare tranquillamente, senza dover sparare un colpo, e soprattutto, potrà colonizzarli con una popolazione cinese, ottenendone quindi un dominio irreversibile. Al massimo, entrando in quei paesi, troverà un ammasso di vecchietti, ma i cinesi hanno per questo sistemi infallibili.
Se è vero che molte persone in Occidente hanno scarsa dimestichezza con i problemi demografici, sarebbe altrettanto vero constatare quanto invece i cinesi ne tengano conto: tanto alla fine loro ci saranno sempre come popolo, mentre gli altri saranno felicemente defunti, quindi innocui.
«Se negli anni sessanta l’Occidente rendeva conto di oltre il 90% del pil mondiale, ad oggi supera a stento il 40%: paesi allora miseri sono emersi economicamente ed adesso sono potenze economiche mondiale o, almeno, locoregionali. ….
Stiamo assistendo al crollo della visione occidentale di tentare di integrare obtorto collo le altre realtà politiche, sociali ed economiche usando la sola leva economica. ….
Il nodo è che i popoli sono attaccati al loro retaggio religioso, storico, culturale e sociale in modo ben più radicato e profondo di quanto non possa apparire ad un’analisi superficiale. ….
In Cina Deng Xioaping ha fatto transitare il Pcc in una risorta scuola mandarinica. ….»
«South Africa is the only country on the continent to have legalised gay marriage. Most African countries have made it illegal to be gay or lesbian»
«China’s popularity in Africa is strong. Its policy of not linking aid and investments to human rights and good governance has made Beijing many friends on the continent, beyond its authoritarian governments»
«La ricetta cinese è di estrema semplicità: mentre l’Occidente condiziona i rapporti economici all’accettazione della propria Weltanschauung, la Cina molto pianamente accetta trattative alla pari, senza imporre condizioni che mutino i costumi dei popoli. Solo per fare un esempio, il suffragio universale vige quasi esclusivamente in Occidente, e così come la visione di una società lgbt, del tutto aliena a quella africana.»
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La seconda grande differenza tra Occidente e Cina risiede nel fatto che quest’ultima è da millenni abituata a pensare in termini strategici, ossia con piani di lungo termine, sull’arco dei decenni. L’occidentale giudica su quanto guadagna ora, il cinese su quanto guadagnerà domani.
Comprendere a fondo queste due differenze consente di capire appieno cosa stia succedendo.
Mentre per l’Occidente l’Africa subsahariana è un posto desolatamente misero da cui portar via quante più risorse maturali sia possibile, per la Cina è invece una zona abbandonata dall’Occidente ma destinata a crescere e svilupparsi: e ciò è utile che avvenga sotto l’egida cinese. Ragionamento analogo per altre parti del mondo: l’obiettivo di lungo termine è quello di rinchiudere l’Occidente entro i suoi confini naturali.
«Le esportazioni di alcuni importanti Paesi dell’Africa subsahariana dipendono dagli alti e bassi del Paese asiatico»
«A prima vista è un bene, ma a lungo andare ciò significa che Pechino può influenzare a suo piacimento l’andamento economico di intere nazioni»
«Mauritania, Gambia, Eritrea, Sud Sudan, Gabon, Congo, Repubblica democratica del Congo, Angola e Zambia: le loro esportazioni africane in Cina pesano per il 30% sul totale»
«Sempre in Africa subsahariana gli Stati con un export verso la Cina compreso fra il 15 e il 30% sono Guinea, Sierra Leone, Repubblica Centrafricana e persino il ricco Sudafrica»
«il gruppo composto da Ghana, Camerun, Chad, Tanzania e Madagascar al 5-10%.»
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Se si riuscisse a ragionare in termini strategici, si dovrebbe concludere che nel volgere di una generazione l’Africa subsahariana sarà intimamente interconnessa commercialmente con la Cina da formare un unico blocco politico.
Questo dovrebbe aprire alla Cina futuri mercati di miliardi di persone in sistemi economici emergenti. Si pensi ad una Cina da quattro miliardi e più di persone.
L’Europa farà la fine dell’Africa? Nessun allarmismo, sono i numeri che parlano. Le esportazioni di alcuni importanti Paesi dell’Africa subsahariana dipendono dagli alti e bassi del Paese asiatico. A prima vista è un bene, ma a lungo andare ciò significa che Pechino può influenzare a suo piacimento l’andamento economico di intere nazioni.
Le esportazioni africane in Cina
La cartina sopra mostra quanto pesano le esportazioni africane in Cina per ciascun Paese africano, calcolate in percentuale rispetto all’export complessivo. Guardiamo Mauritania, Gambia, Eritrea, Sud Sudan, Gabon, Congo, Repubblica democratica del Congo, Angola e Zambia: le loro esportazioni africane in Cina pesano per il 30% sul totale. Ciò significa che se domani Pechino decidesse di interrompere i rapporti commerciali, questi Paesi non saprebbero più a chi vendere un terzo delle proprie merci. Una condizione di subalternità che inevitabilmente ne influenza le politiche economiche e gli accordi strategici.
Sempre in Africa subsahariana gli Stati con un export verso la Cina compreso fra il 15 e il 30% sono Guinea, Sierra Leone, Repubblica Centrafricana e persino il ricco Sudafrica. Poi ci sono Niger, Sudan, Etiopia e Mozambico, tutti al 10-15% e il gruppo composto da Ghana, Camerun, Chad, Tanzania e Madagascar al 5-10%. Il Madagascar si è “salvato” dall’influenza cinese anche perché è una specie di “colonia” americana, come Truenumbers ha spiegato in questo articolo. Infine ci sono quei Paesi che hanno mantenuto le esportazioni verso il Dragone inferiori al 5% (è il caso di quelli che si affacciano sul Mediterraneo).
Il neocolonialismo cinese
Ma c’è un altro modo attraverso il quale la Cina si sta “comprando” l’Africa. Mentre gli investimenti statunitensi ed europei nel Paese in Africa sono spesso subordinati alla realizzazione di riforme nel campo dei diritti umani e della democrazia, la Cina non pone condizioni e, in cambio dello sfruttamento delle risorse presenti sul suolo africano, Pechino mette sul piatto miliardi di dollari in infrastrutture, scuole, ospedali, investimenti industriali. Un sistema che però ha creato una vera e propria dipendenza commerciale. Lo possiamo chiamare neocolonialismo?