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China says it's not thrusting Belt and Road

China has played down the US criticism of the Belt and Road project, especially the controversial China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) artery, and denied that Beijing is trying to foist the project.

Oct 7, 2017
By Gaurav Sharma
 
China has played down the US criticism of the Belt and Road project, especially the controversial China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) artery, and denied that Beijing is trying to foist the project.
 
The Chinese Foreign Ministry told IANS that the CPEC, which goes through Pakistan-administered Kashmir that is claimed by India, was an economic project that does not target New Delhi. Beijing also said that it "adhered to the 'discuss, build, share' concept and followed reasonable and transparent international economic and trade investment rules system".
 
US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis had criticised China's Belt and Road initiative and backed India's stance that the project passed through disputed territory.
 
"In a globalized world, there are many belts and many roads, and no one nation should put itself into a position of dictating 'one belt, one road'," Mattis told members of the Senate Armed Services Committee during a Congressional hearing.
 
"That said, the One Belt One Road also goes through disputed territory, and I think, that in itself shows the vulnerability of trying to establish that sort of a dictate," Mattis said, referring to India's concern over CPEC.
 
To this, China said that while the initiative was indeed its, more and more countries were willing to join the project.
 
China has an ambitious plan to connect Asia, Africa and Europe through a maze of roads and waterways.
 
Analysts, however, say it is not just an economic project and there is more to it than meets the eye. India has openly opposed the Belt and Road, whose CPEC cuts through Pakistan-administered Kashmir. India in May skipped the Belt and Road Initiative conference organised by China in Beijing to protest the move.

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