World Economy

EEC Outlines Cooperation Within Silk Road Belt

EEC Outlines Cooperation Within Silk Road BeltEEC Outlines Cooperation Within Silk Road Belt

Economics ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization have outlined key areas to integrate the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) with China’s Silk Road Economic Belt initiative, the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC) trade minister told Sputnik on Wednesday.

“First and foremost, it is the transport infrastructure, which is thought to be much broader than the western China-western Europe transport corridor,” Andrei Slepnev said.

Beyond the east-west international transit corridor, Slepnev said colleagues from India, Iran and Pakistan called for a formal cooperative network, including the North-South corridor and access to the Southwest Asia.

The EEC minister in charge of trade listed technological, investment, financial markets and industrial cooperation, along with “building the economy of the future” among other fields of partnership.

“I hope that the steps taken in this session will be reflected in the EEU’s agreement with China as key economic centers of the entire region,” Slepnev said.

The trade minister cited the China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the Silk Road Fund and other financial institutions as main financiers behind the joint projects.

Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed in 2013 the construction of a new Silk Road to facilitate the direct flow of goods from the Pacific Ocean to the Baltic Sea. The megaprojects are intended to connect China with Europe and strengthen economic ties between Asia, Europe and the Persian Gulf Arab states.

The 2015 Euro-Asia Economic Forum is scheduled to take place in the central Chinese city of Xian September 24-25.

The SCO is a political, economic and military alliance composed of six member states, including Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, as well as five observer states and three dialogue partners.

Russia, China and Kazakhstan established an interstate Silk Road Eurasian Cultural Cooperation Organization at the Second Silk Road International Cultural Forum held in Moscow this week.