Reflection Forum: “The Western Balkans in the European Union: Perspectives of a region in Europe?”
July 3, 2017
Round-table “After Trieste Summit: Albania’s achievements and challenges on its road to EU” with Keynote Speaker MEP and Rapporteur for Albania in the EP Mr. Knut Fleckenstein.
September 19, 2017

The Belt and the Road (BRI), the modern name of the old Silk Road, is a Chinese initiative connecting China to Europe. It is composed by a mostly rail connection that goes through Asia, and a sea link that connects China ports to Pakistan, India, Africa and then through the Suez canal enters the Mediterranean Sea (its main landing station is not far away from Albania, in the Piraeus port).

This initiative aims to promote connectivity and economic cooperation amongst China and the countries that it goes through. Moreover the Belt and the Road supports the coordination of policies of the impacted sectors, increases the financial exchanges and puts a special attention to the people relations.

Europe is the terminus of this initiative and as such it plays a strategic role. For China, Europe is the most important trade partner, the main source of foreign investments, a key supporter of the Chinese economy and the focus of the BRI. This initiative aims to create stronger ties amongst those two old civilizations and markets, and to increase the concrete collaboration amongst China and Europe.

The book we are posting today, is authored by Professor Liu Zuoikoi, Director of the China – CEEC Think Tanks Exchange and Cooperation Network Office, at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. This publication has been presented in Beijing on 30 June 2017. The book provides an comprehensive and innovative analysis of technical and political factors, the perception of the European elites on the this initiative, presents the challenges and the related risks, and end providing recommendations on the public policies and necessary measures to maximize the benefits for all the partners.

In the presentation event of the book, together with research institutions and scholars from CEEC and WB6, was invited also Cooperation & Development Institute. CDI moderated the panel “The Belt & Road and 16+1 Cooperation Initiative: Risks, Challenges and Potential Scenarios”.

CDI assesses that BRI is a key factor that impacts the connectivity amongst WB6 countries as well as the connectivity amongst the WB6 region and the EU. In this optic, and thanking Professor Liu for his kind permission to publish the book, CDI offers to the interested stakeholders in Albania and to its partners involved in WB6 regional cooperation, this very relevant analysis coming from the most eminent Chinese researcher of the 16+1 cooperation initiative, and of BRI. Only a very few days before the Trieste Summit, this analysis will offer to the readers the point of view of research colleagues and scholars from China on regional cooperation, on connectivity, and on their impact on the economic growth and prosperity of participating countries.

“Europe and the “Belt and Road” Initiative: Responses and Risks”
Author: Liu Zuokui, China – CEEC Think Tank Book Series, Ed. China Social Sciences Press, Beijing 2017.

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