Tuesday, May 23 2017 20:19
Alina Hovhannisyan

Expert: within the framework of the BRI concept, Armenia can have a significant role in the development of digital infrastructures

ArmInfo. Within the framework of  One Belt One Way (BRI) concept, Armenia can have a significant role  in the development of digital infrastructures.This opinion was  expressed by Eurasian Forum representative and the Council of the  Swedish Industry on International Affairs Henrik Hallgren during Silk  Way Economic Belt seminar  organized on May 23 by the Armenian office  of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation together with the Yerevan Press  Club.

In this regard, the European representative noted that the IT segment  of Armenia is pretty  developed, and the knowledge of Armenian  experts  in this field can be used in the markets of other countries.  He stressed:  "The Chinese say little about the digital  infrastructure, and this segment is very important for the bilateral  connection of the states within this initiative." At the same time,  he noted the role of Armenia in the framework of trilateral  cooperation (EU-Armenia-China), which the country can profitably use,  led by its interests. What is to  China cooperation with the EEU  through Armenia, he noted that the member countries have limited  economy, except Russia and Kazakhstan, at the same time he stressed   that the volume of domestic trade and trade with third countries is  low. To develop China cooperation with EEU, according to Hallgren,  Armenia should have strong positions in terms of dialogue, and for  this, first of all, Armenia itself must be a strategically strong  country. At the same time, as negative factors, the expert noted the  lack of infrastructures and the dependence of the situation on energy  security from just one nuclear power plant.

To recall, in fall 2013, Chinese President Xi Jinping presented the  Concept of the One Belt, One Road Project, including establishment of  the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road.  Implementation of the first phase is planned for 2016-2020, but  already in 2015 the financial basis was established in the form of  the Silk Road Fund and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.  The  goal of the One Belt, One Road Project is to develop  transit-transport system connecting China with the countries of the  Eurasian continent and Africa.  The Concept presupposes not only  construction and development of transport- logistical infrastructure,  huge zone of free trade but also a unique financial system uniting  regional development banks thus creating conditions for the targeted  capital movement and ensuring payments in term of national  currencies, first of all in yuans. For the implementation of the New  Silk Road Project Beijing has established a $40-billion Fund of Silk   Road as well as $100 billion Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank  (AIIB), which launched operation on 29 June, 2015.


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