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China’s new Silk Road ‘very important contribution’ to global economy, IMF says

China’s new Silk Road ‘very important contribution’ to global economy, IMF says
The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has benefited the world in fostering infrastructure in low-income countries, Changyong Rhee, director of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Asia and Pacific Department, has said.

He told Xinhua News the China-proposed trade route is a “very important contribution” to the global economy while promoting regional cooperation and connectivity in trade investment, human mobility and finance.

The official said: “The IMF is in very close collaboration with the Chinese authorities on sharing the best international practices, especially regarding fiscal sustainability and capacity building,” not only for Chinese officials, but also for officials from low-income countries that have joined in the BRI.

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According to Rhee, the fund has opened the China-IMF Capacity Development Center in Beijing in order to provide personnel training, support institution building, and boost communication for countries along the Belt and Road.

China’s BRI megaproject (dubbed the new Silk Road) which was announced six years ago by President Xi Jinping covers 152 countries in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, and Africa. It is expected to significantly boost global trade, and cut trading costs by half for the countries involved.

China’s contribution to the world’s economy will increase, according to Rhee, who noted the country is expected to account for more than 30 percent of global growth this year.

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“We welcome the Chinese government’s recent announcement of a growth target in the form of a range, not a point target,” Rhee said. “I think that is quite consistent with the authorities’ emphasis on the quality of growth rather than just maintain high quantity growth.”

The IMF has projected that China’s economy will grow by 6.3 percent this year, higher than the previous forecast of 6.2 percent.

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