What are six economic corridors under Belt and Road Initiative?

Belt & Road

The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) constains the following six international economic corridors.

China.org.cnUpdated: August 4, 2020

The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) constains the following six international economic corridors.

China-Mongolia-Russia Economic Corridor

The idea of the China-Mongolia-Russia Economic Corridor (CMREC) was proposed by President Xi Jinping on September 11, 2014 during the first trilateral meeting of the three heads of state in Dushanbe, capital of Tajikistan, and was welcomed by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj. On June 23, 2016, the three countries put pen to paper on a development plan for the proposal, the first multilateral cooperation plan to form part of the Belt and Road Initiative.

As an important component of the Silk Road Economic Belt, the CMREC aims to align China's Belt and Road Initiative with Russia's proposal for the Eurasian Union and Mongolia's Steppe Road program. It creates an overarching platform to tap the potential and strengths of the three parties to expand development opportunities beneficial to all, promote regional economic integration, and enhance their collective competitiveness in the international market.

The CMREC has two key traffic arteries: one extends from China's Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region to Hohhot and on to Mongolia and Russia; the other extends from China's Dalian, Shenyang, Changchun, Harbin and Manzhouli to Russia's Chita.

Seven major areas of cooperation are envisaged: transport infrastructure and connectivity; port construction, and customs and border inspection and quarantine services; industrial capacity and investment; trade; cultural and people-to-people exchanges; environmental protection; and cooperation with adjacent regions. Transport is the main focus.

New Eurasian Land Bridge

The New Eurasian Land Bridge (NELB) is an international passageway linking the Pacific and the Atlantic. As distinct from the Siberian Landbridge, which goes from Russia's eastern port of Vladivostok through Siberia to Moscow and onward to West European countries, this "second" bridge goes from China's coastal cities of Lianyungang and Rizhao to Holland's Rotterdam and Belgium's Antwerp. The 10,800-kilometer-long rail link runs through Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Poland and Germany, and serves more than 30 countries and regions.

Opened in the early 1990s, the NELB is gaining new impetus from the Belt and Road Initiative. It greatly facilitates trade and other exchanges between the countries along the route and between Asia and Europe.

To date, several transcontinental rail routes, which showcase the potential of the Belt and Road Initiative, have entered service. These include the Chongqing-Xinjiang-Europe Railway (reaching Germany's Duisburg via Poland), the Chengdu-Xinjiang-Europe Railway (reaching Poland), and the Yiwu-Xinjiang-Europe Railway (reaching Madrid). The construction of associated highways, power transmission lines, and ports is progressing in a steady manner.

China-Central Asia-West Asia Economic Corridor

The China-Central Asia-West Asia Economic Corridor (CCWAEC) links China and the Arabian Peninsula. The vast region it covers generally follows the trajectory of the ancient Silk Road.

The corridor starts from China's Xinjiang and traverses Central Asia before reaching the Persian Gulf, the Mediterranean Sea and the Arabian Peninsula. It crosses five Central Asian countries (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan) and 17 countries and regions in West Asia (including Iran, Saudi Arab and Turkey). It is an important component of the Silk Road Economic Belt.

Central and West Asia are rich in resources, but many factors – backward infrastructure and lack of funds in particular – hinder local development. The CCWAEC will facilitate economic and trade cooperation and flow of capital to these regions, boosting local economic and social development.

China-Indochina Peninsula Economic Corridor

China and the Indochina Peninsula are connected by land and sea, with close geographical, cultural, and people-to-people ties. The Indochina Peninsula is an important link on the Belt and Road.

The China-Indochina Peninsula Economic Corridor (CICPEC) extends from China's Pearl River Delta westward along the Nanchong-Guang'an Expressway and the Nanning-Guangzhou High-speed Railway via Nanning and Pingxiang to Hanoi and Singapore.

This land bridge links China with the Indochina Peninsula and crosses the heart of Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Myanmar and Malaysia. It is expected to boost China's cooperation with the ASEAN countries.

The CICPEC project aims to better connect cities in this region with a network of railways and highways to facilitate the flow of people, goods, capital and information. It will open up new opportunities for strategic cooperation, and create a regional economy bolstered by complementary strengths to ensure sound regional development. By creating new regional growth drivers, it will help achieve common prosperity on the peninsula, and strengthen the China- ASEAN community of a shared future.

China-Pakistan Economic Corridor

The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was proposed by Premier Li Keqiang during a visit to Pakistan in May 2013.

The 3,000-kilometer-long corridor starts from China's Kashi and ends at Pakistan's Gwadar, and connects the Silk Road Economic Belt in the north and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road in the south. It is a trade network of highways, railways, pipelines and optical cables, and a flagship project under the Belt and Road Initiative.

China and Pakistan developed a long-term plan for the construction of transport and power facilities along the corridor in April 2015. These facilities are expected to spur the launch of other major projects in infrastructure, energy, water conservancy, and information and communications, including industrial parks and free trade zones. With an investment totaling US$45 billion, construction of the CPEC is scheduled to be completed by 2030.

President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif were present at the ground-breaking ceremony for five major projects on April 20, 2015, when over 30 agreements and memoranda in relation to CPEC cooperation were signed.

The CPEC is designed to enhance bilateral exchanges and cooperation in transport, energy and maritime shipping, foster connectivity between the two countries, and promote common development. It will also help enhance connectivity across the whole of South Asia, and expand cooperation in economic and energy sectors between the countries in South and Central Asia, North Africa and along the Persian Gulf, thus forming an economic radius benefiting nearly 3 billion people.

Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor

The proposal for the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor (BCIMEC) was unveiled by China and India during Premier Li Keqiang's visit to India in May 2013, with the objective of linking the two huge markets of China and India and enhancing regional connectivity. Bangladesh and Myanmar welcomed the proposal.

In December 2013, the first BCIMEC joint study group meeting was held in Kunming, and a joint study plan was signed by all parties, leading to the establishment of a mechanism for cooperation among the four governments.

When meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in India in September 2014, President Xi Jinping suggested that China and India spearhead a joint effort to accelerate the construction of the BCIMEC under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative.

At its second meeting in Cox's Bazaar, Bangladesh in December 2014, the BCIMEC joint study group discussed the vision, priorities, and direction of future development of the BCIMEC. In addition to bringing benefits to the four countries directly involved, the corridor is also expected to spur growth in South, Southeast and East Asia as well.

In April 2017, the BCIMEC joint study group met for the third time in India's Kolkata, and discussed the research report that had been jointly compiled by the four countries. The parties agreed that the report reflected their consensus on exchanges and cooperation in a number of key sectors including connectivity, energy, investment and financing, facilitation of trade and investment in goods and services, sustainable development, and cultural and people-to-people exchanges.

In addition to direct benefits to the four countries, the BCIMEC is expected to boost the integrated development of the three economic plates of South, Southeast and East Asia.